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Community Competitiveness Initiative

The Community Competitiveness Initiative (CCI) is designed to enhance competitiveness by focusing communities on economic development capacity and readiness at the local level.

Guiding Success and Collaboration

The Community Competitiveness Initiative raises awareness of the processes of economic development and the necessary factors to achieve success. It provides community leaders with clear direction on specific resources needed to foster successful economic development while increasing collaboration between municipal, parish, regional and state economic development practitioners.

Twenty indicators can gauge the economic development readiness of each community. These indicators were identified using economic development best practices along with input from the International Economic Development Council (IEDC). For each indicator, communities can be identified by one of three stages of development: emerging, developing or achieving. With this information, the initiative can maintain an ongoing understanding of the economic development capacity of communities and identify potential improvements.

The information used to determine the economic development capacity of communities is primarily used for planning, allocating resources and developing policies to enhance economic development in Louisiana. Not only can this process help communities identify opportunities for improvement, but it can also help to determine where LED should focus efforts and resources to help strengthen economic development capacity throughout the state.

CCI visits are now available virtually. For additional resources to prepare for investment, growth and sustainability, visit the LCN Community Development Toolkit.

To assess your community’s economic development capacity on the indicators listed below, click the link to download the Community Competitiveness Assessment Form.

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Organization Staffing – determines whether an organization has an adequate staff with pertinent skills to carry out economic development efforts

Organization Budget – gauges ability to identify and manage financial resources needed to carry out a plan of work

Economic Development Plan – measures the existence and effectiveness of a working document that articulates goals, guides activities tied to specific objectives and matches current strengths to strategic targets

Target Industry Analysis – measures whether an appropriate degree of analysis and planning has been completed to support successful recruitment of new investment, cultivation of existing expansion opportunities and identification of opportunities for improvement

Regional Economic Development Organization Engagement – measures involvement with key working partner(s)

Leadership Training/Stakeholder Education – determines the level of activity in building program awareness and a reservoir of talent that can assist with sustainability

Available Sites – measures activity associated with the identification of properties that can serve to attract investment by meeting critical project location needs

Available Buildings – measures the activity of maintaining an inventory of all available space and matching that space with investor requirements

Workforce/Labor – gauges activity in developing awareness of the current state of the workforce in a given community and taking steps to improve the quantity and quality of available workers

Infrastructure Capacity – measures the level of knowledge related to current infrastructure capacity, future needs based on business and industry growth and planning for meeting future needs

Understanding of Local Competitiveness – gauges awareness of competitors (for investment), identification of those factors that define local competitiveness (e.g. taxes, permitting) and ongoing work towards improvement

Marketing Plan – determines whether a roadmap for communicating and carrying out an entity’s plan of work is in place

Economic Development Partnerships – measures level of involvement with key allies, leveraging resources and developing collaborations

Prospect Hosting – measures the process of educating potential investors about the readiness of a community for business investment and job opportunities

Promotion Collateral – measures the use of best practices in promoting a community

Inventory of Unique Selling Points – gauges community awareness of the value of its assets and how they are used in positive promotion

Parish-wide Emergency Preparedness Plan – measures the existence and effectiveness of a working plan that has been assessed and reviewed, and provides for emergency preparedness, including disaster mitigation, response and recovery processes

Disaster Preparedness – gauges a community’s understanding and preparedness for various disasters and their role in relief efforts

Business Retention and Expansion – identifies and measures a retention plan designed to quickly and effectively assist businesses with post-disaster economic recovery

Constituent Communication and Engagement – gauges the use of various methods within a communication strategy to support constituent outreach and engagement