Public presentations on the findings and recommendations of the project were held on November 6, 2018 in Longlac and Geraldton - approximately 30 attendees were present.
The report highlights the study purpose, assessment and inventory methodology, survey results, recommendations and suggested actions, and next steps. Attendees were pleased to hear that there will be continuity in the project, with Municipality of Greenstone’s new project focused on some of the actions.
The inventory at time of publication is comprised of the 56 businesses that completed the questionnaires; this was over a 50% response rate of businesses approached. The initial “target list” of businesses was derived from the GEDC Business Directory and drilled down to within the project scope; in addition to those who were referred to us or requested to be part of the project. It was reiterated in the presentations that the inventory would be a live public document and updated periodically; this includes changes by existing businesses on the list or new ones who wish to be added. Some felt that the inventory was not applicable to them but it was noted that every business could benefit. For example: for every direct dollar spent in a construction phase there is typically an additional $3 spent in spin-off/in-direct expenses.
The inventory includes a summary of services and resources that were outlined in the questionnaires; which provides “a local insight level” of information for companies looking for certain resources and services. In addition, it outlines businesses/organizations who indicated an interest in partnering. Stephen Lindley, the consultant and presenter, discussed the benefits of partnering and the importance of allowing time to build relationships for partnering - waiting until the contracts come out to tender can be late to prepare. Partnering can include “business to business locally” and “business locally to business regionally” for example. Partnering can increase your capacity without necessarily increasing your risk, and link synergies between different types of businesses/organizations. The importance of aligning training programs and providers to future needs was also noted, which could include partnerships. A show of hands indicated the benefit and interest level of a “Partnering 101” workshop.
The Business Capacity Inventory project was a partnership between Greenstone Economic Development Corporation (GEDC), Greenstone Gold Mines, AV Terrace Bay Inc. and the Municipality of Greenstone.
The report and inventory will be available in both official languages on the GEDC website www.gedc.ca along with other updates and contact information.