In addition to established, structured labor market information from public sources like the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are various sources of proprietary labor data that aggregate online job postings and resumes and can offer more timely, granular insights.
Labor market information, particularly from a cross-section of sources, is extremely valuable to the location decision process. Labor accounts for 60 per¬cent to 80 percent of corporate expenses. To sustain operations and support financial growth, businesses need to know where to be to attract and keep employees at every level of their organization.
As a result, the demand for fast and accurate answers to labor-driven research questions has be-come an important core competency for most organizations. Great labor analytics begins with great data, but labor data can be hard to find for many reasons:
- Government-sourced labor market information is typically outdated.
- Specific labor requirements or specialized skills rarely map to the general labor categories or job titles most commonly listed by the BLS.
- When labor data is available, it is rarely at the city or street level of detail needed to make evidenced-based labor decisions or real-world market comparisons.
- Corporations, even in the same industry, have unique labor requirements from market to market.
- Assess labor on not only cost and availability, but sustainability. Corporations that are expand¬ing, moving, or consolidating operations are in need of talent. Labor cost, availability, and sustainability analysis will help these corporations accelerate their long-term productivity while avoiding costly transitional mistakes.
- Blend labor market indicators such as earnings, education, and population growth with socio-economic information such as demographics, cost of living, crime, and transportation networks to identify and demonstrate unique community strengths.
- Recognize that site selection is a science. Understanding business and community ecosystems takes more than pulling a few numbers. The competitive nature of site selection is evolving toward highly complex data modeling that eliminates errors or assumptions that often emerge with the random scoring and ranking of markets.