Strategy Consulting

Growth Decisions Require Global Thinking

The economy is changing. Businesses’ growth decisions are global, not local. Talent is more mobile than ever. Without a strategic plan, you cannot effectively compete over time. Ady Advantage understands how businesses make location decisions. This means we have the first-hand knowledge to assist clients with economic development strategy that is grounded in real-world business drivers and crafted with an eye toward implementation. We assist economic development organizations in planning for the future, refining their recruitment efforts and understanding their competition and translating that strategy to targeted communications and marketing.

The way to compete in today’s economic development environment is to have the best strategy. 

Economic Development Strategic Planning

Today’s economic development has been redefined. Simply put, we’ve gone from an “if you build it, they will come” framework to one that says, “if you have the people, the businesses will come.” The traditional “three legs of the stool” – business retention/expansion, business recruitment, and business start-up – have now become business development, talent development and placemaking. At Ady Advantage, we’ve developed an economic development framework known as Economic Development 360™ that addresses these three core components. This framework creates a comprehensive approach to economic development strategic planning. By organizing our approaches in these three areas, goals and strategies are targeted and tailored to each “leg” of the stool. Economic Development 360™ leads to outcome-driven goals through an integrated and holistic approach.

Economic Resiliency Strategies

Recent global disruptions showed that every corner of the world is vulnerable to disasters. In truth, economic resiliency should always be a top priority for communities because no one can predict when the next natural disaster or economic disruption will happen. Ady Advantage conducts research on trends and disruptions that will have a lasting impact on economic development. We also study and distill the implications for economic developers. We help communities answer questions like:

  • What are the impacts of global trends and disruptions on my community, businesses, workforce, etc.?
  • What are the critical needs of my business community (outreach, support, programming, talent, funding, etc.)?
  • How can we best address short-term and long-term economic development impacts and aid in recovery?

Mock RFI and RFI Best Practices

Do you wonder why you are not closing more projects? It might be that you are being eliminated because of your Request For Information (RFI) response. Our team conducts RFI audits, as well as mock RFI projects, for numerous utility, state and regional groups to help you improve the capacity of your own organization’s response or those of all the EDOs in your region or state. Learn specific tips, tricks, and best practices to enhance your likelihood of moving on in the process.

Mock Site Visit

A visit by a site selector can be one of the highest stake moments of a project deal process. You do everything you can in advance to ensure the visit goes as smoothly, but it can be hard to know what to expect when your community is a finalist. Whether the site visit is in-person, virtual, or a hybrid, we can help you ace the process. That’s why we offer mock site visits, mimicking the formal process of a site selector looking to consider your community for a prospective business looking to relocate or expand. This allows our clients to get real-world practice and help ensure they put their best foot forward when the real deal comes your way.

FDI Strategies

Foreign direct investment (FDI) is a key area of opportunity for communities across the country to create jobs and improve economic growth. However, while the principles of business attraction remain the same as for those of domestic companies, there is an additional layer of nuance and complexity to business recruitment efforts targeting foreign-owned companies. Ady Advantage creates strategies for your community to attract foreign direct investment.

Resource Allocation

Communities have an unprecedented opportunity with the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding becoming available. With such a big influx of cash coming from ARPA, communities will have many decisions to make about where to allocate it all. Ady Advantage can provide objective, outside expertise on the highest priorities of use for the funding is to make the greatest impact on the goals of your community. We will help ensure the process is evidence-based and grounded with strong stakeholder engagement and input. ARPA provides an amazing opportunity, and Ady Advantage can help your community make the most of it.

Community Competitiveness Assessment

If a prospect were to come to your community tomorrow, would you be able to secure the project? Learn what site selectors look for each step of the way during a community visit, from community readiness through the readiness of specific sites and buildings, and the community response. This is a great way to educate stakeholders on their role in the process, strengthen alignment and readiness, and shed light on what makes your community different.  Each Community Competitiveness Assessment includes a wrap-up brief with recommended next steps.

Policy and Program Review and Recommendations

Great strategy is important, but so is great implementation. One of the core tools in a community economic development toolbox are your policies and programs. This includes your incentives, zoning, tax abatements and tax credits, etc. We can help assess your current policies and programs, and provide you with recommendations to tailor these tools to match your overarching strategies and goals.

 

Strategic Plan Implementation Support

Completing a strategic planning process can feel very rewarding and exciting, but also very intimidating. It can feel like there is an overwhelming amount of priorities and action items when getting started on implementation. That’s why Ady Advantage offers strategic plan implementation support – to help our clients prioritize and put their plans into action, instead of letting it become another plan that collects dust on the shelf.

Supply Chain Strategies

Nearly every industry that creates physical products requires the input of other materials and goods. This means that for every industry there are opportunities related to supply chain for those communities that can capitalize and develop on them.  The reverse is also true, as deficiencies in supply chains can be a key factor inhibiting full potential growth, especially as it relates to your target industries. Ady Advantage creates strategies for your community to optimize the supply chains of employers in your region.

Incentives Policy

If your resources were limitless, you wouldn’t need an investment policy, but of course that is not the case. We will lead you through a process to identify the types of projects that your community should be most aggressive in pursuing – and those you should not pursue. We include a number of scenarios tailored to available incentives in your community, help you draft your formal incentives policy, and provide you with a model for assessing incentives impact for future projects.

 

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