Silverlode helped an electric utility company and its member communities to significantly improve their business attraction efforts.
American Municipal Power (AMP) is a nonprofit corporation that owns and operates electric generation and transmission facilities and provides energy to over 125 communities in Ohio and nearby states. AMP also provides economic development coordination services to those communities, which vary greatly in their abilities to implement business attraction projects. AMP wanted to assess the economic development readiness of thirteen of these Ohio communities and test their ability to respond to site selection inquiries. These urban, suburban, rural and Appalachian communities varied widely in their industrial composition, population, and socio-economic characteristics. Silverlode was engaged by AMP to conduct a simulated site selection.
Silverlode developed and distributed Requests for Information (RFI) for two hypothetical site selection projects so that the participating communities could test their ability to respond to such inquiries. We summarized our assessments of these RFI responses in a report which analyzed the economic development readiness, location factors, and website content of each community. The report included actionable recommendations on the collection, relevance, and presentation of community data as well as strategies for coordinating response efforts and improving responses (such as highlighting local assets and strategically addressing shortcomings). Silverlode's work elevated the communities' ability to respond to business inquiries and increased the likelihood of success for the member communities as well as for AMP.