Matrix spearheaded the development of this economic development strategic plan (EDSP) for Oakland County, Michigan. In addition to public engagement and facilitation, Matrix performed various analyses, including an economic target cluster analysis, workforce assessment, asset review, and organizational review. These in-depth evaluations, coupled with visioning sessions, shaped recommendations for the County to consider when implementing the EDSP.
In order to facilitate engagement, Matrix developed a web-based StoryMap that allowed stakeholders to view charts, maps, and analyses tied to economic target clusters in an easy to understand format. Clusters included financial services, information technology, and the mobility and automotive industry. Embedded within each cluster analysis section of the StoryMap were summary dashboards and time-enabled web mapping applications to summarize and interact with project data. In particular, the tool allowed users to see how each cluster contributed to the local economy and how performance compared to regional, state, and national levels. Additionally, Matrix completed a robust workforce analysis that highlighted gaps in skills and provided an interactive map of local academic institutions with programs teaching those skills — creating opportunities to improve and enhance the overall workforce in the county.
This interactive, actionable data visualization tool was made available to all interested stakeholders. The information accessed through the StoryMap will help shape the implementation of the EDSP and is a valuable tool for facilitating better understanding of economic development factors in the Oakland County. Further, this tool positions the County to foster a deeper and more nuanced understanding of the various clusters and opportunities for enhancement and to strategically advance the workforce accordingly.