2024 Employer Survey Results,

Housing Committee Meeting

2024 Employer Survey Results and Analysis

The 495/MetroWest Partnership has released an analysis of results from our 2024 495/MetroWest Employer Survey, which was undertaken in conjunction with Framingham State University’s MetroWest Economic Research Center (MERC). The survey, now in its 11th year, is an annual project gauging the outlook and intentions of business leaders across the region.

The survey focuses on employers with physical plants located in the 495/MetroWest region, defined as the 36 cities and towns served by the 495/MetroWest Partnership. Owners, leaders, or individuals with regional hiring authority for private, public, or nongovernmental organizations that have a presence in the 495/MetroWest region were invited to take part. The survey was conducted online during April and May 2024.

176 total respondents took part, a 14% increase in participation over the 2023 survey.

Click here to access the full survey analysis.

Highlights from the survey results include:

  • More than twice as many respondents (44%) feel the economy in the 495/MetroWest region will improve over the coming year than those who expect it will decline (20%). 36% expect conditions to remain the same. The percentage of respondents who expect regional economic conditions to improve increased to 44% from 37% in our 2023 survey; the percentage expecting a decline dropped from 32% to 20%.

  • A strong majority of respondents (61%) expect their organization’s revenues to improve this year over the previous year, up from 51% last year. Only 15% expect a decline, down from 21% last year. 24% expect about the same revenue performance.

  • 27% of respondents feel business conditions in 495/MetroWest are better than they were a year ago, with 60% feeling they are about the same. Only 13% feel conditions are worse.

  • 46% of employers taking the survey expect to grow their workforce in the 495/MetroWest region over the course of the coming year, up from 41% last year. Only 7% are contemplating a staffing reduction, with 1% planning a reduction. 13% do not intend any changes in staffing levels, with 33% unsure.

  • Only 10% of respondents stated that inflationary pressures had not impacted profitability this year. However, the percentage saying the negative impact was significant dropped from 33% last year to 18% in 2024.

  • When asked what their overall biggest concerns were over the course of the coming year, more than half selected both Workforce/ Hiring and Inflation.

  • 52% of respondents say they have encountered difficulties in hiring qualified staff this year. This marks a pronounced drop from 2023, when 65% of respondents reported having difficulties.

  • When asked the single most important challenge in the 495/MetroWest region facing their organization today, 48% cited one of three labor/ workforce issues: Labor costs were the choice of 19%, Labor availability 15%, and Labor quality/ skillsets 14%. However, Housing Costs moved into first place, compared with 3rd place in 2023.

Click here to access the survey analysis.

Draft Housing Vision and Priorities Statement;

Housing Committee Meeting June 28th

The state's housing crunch carries significant economic risk for the 495/MetroWest region. The Housing Committee of the 495/MetroWest Partnership is leading the development of a consensus "Vision and Priorities" statement for the organization, which will establish the Partnership's vision and core beliefs on the subject of housing, as well as outline specific actions that should be taken to address the situation.

Our draft Housing Vision and Priorities statement is available for review at this link. The draft was developed by the Housing Committee's Co-Chairs, working in tandem with Partnership staff. Your feedback is sought and welcomed; the document has not yet been acted upon by the Board of Directors of the 495/MetroWest Partnership, and at this time does not represent the organization’s formal position. Your feedback will help inform the organization's position prior to ratification by the Board.

You are invited to offer comments on the draft, which you can do by completing this online form; comments may also be submitted via email to Executive Director Jason Palitsch via email at Jason@495Partnership.org. Please note that anonymous comments will not be considered.

The Housing Committee of the 495/MetroWest Partnership will meet virtually on Friday, June 28th at 9:00 AM to review and discuss the proposed draft; feedback received during the discussion will be taken under advisement. This meeting is open to any interested 495/MetroWest stakeholder; click here to register

As always, please do not hesitate to reach out if the Partnership can be of any assistance to you:
Jason Palitsch, Executive Director
(774) 760-0495

Thank you for your continued commitment to strengthening our region.
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