Live here, work there? Live there, work here? Take the Laborshed survey

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The city of Perry and Perry Economic Development Inc. are partnering with the Iowa Workforce Development and the Iowa Economic Development Authority to complete a Laborshed employment study for the Perry area.

The study will geographically define which communities contribute to Perry’s workforce, regardless of political boundaries. This defined area is called a Laborshed area and is based upon commuting patterns.

“The purpose of this Laborshed study is to measure the availability and characteristics of Perry area workers,” said Perry Community and Economic Development Director Mike Fastenau. “Laborshed studies are useful tools for economic development teams and existing or prospective employers to understand the local labor market, make informed expansion and site selection decisions and maintain or recruit a high quality workforce.”

Fastenau said the city will send letters to employers in Perry, asking that they provide us with aggregate counts of their employees’ residential ZIP codes. This will allow the city and its partners to determine what the scope and scale of Perry’s Laborshed area is and better understand where Perry’s workforce resides.

A confidential survey of residents will also be conducted to collect workforce characteristic information specific to the area, Fastenau said. Residents will receive a letter directing them how to take the survey online, he said with the survey questions covering topics such as: employment status, current and desired wages, current and desired benefits, education level, and type of occupation among other things.

Fastenau emphasized that the Iowa Workforce Development, which developed the Laborshed survey questions, does not ask survey takers for identifiable information, such as their name, social security number or date of birth.

He said the Iowa Workforce Development conducts similar Laborshed studies across the State every year. The results of each analysis are publicly available online. For more information about the Laborshed project, contact Katie Lippold with Iowa Workforce Development at 515-281-3035 or Mike Fastenau with the city of Perry at 515-465-2481.

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