Project Overview


To support local organizations in attracting and developing a robust and diverse workforce in the Windsor-Essex region, the LEPC will create a toolkit for local organizations to develop regional talent attraction and retention strategies and author blog posts featuring individuals who have chosen to relocate to Windsor-Essex for work.

Project Timeline

April 1, 2019 to March 31, 2020

Project Status – IN PROGRESS

On February 3, 2020, the Local Employment Planning Council (LEPC) launched the Strategies for Talent Attraction and Retention Toolkit for Windsor-Essex (#STARTYQG), which contains the following resources:

  • Attracting and Retaining Talent in Windsor-Essex – An essential guide: A new publication providing foundational research findings on migration patterns, the type and kind of talent our region needs, best practices from other regions, survey findings of 921 local respondents, advice on tailoring attraction and retention messages by audience, and what investments and policies will be most effective in attracting and retaining talent.
  • WEmap Sectors: An online mapping tool that interactively displays data for over 4000 local companies by sector and by occupations offered. The tool will be useful to employers, jobseekers, employment agencies, students, educators, and government, displaying what sectors are hiring, where industry clusters are located, what employers are hiring which occupations, and more.
  • WEmap Talent: An online mapping tool that allows local employers to browse occupation data for other countries and to pinpoint regions with the talent pools they are seeking to attract.

The LEPC will now be sharing the resources at meetings, events, and workshops in the community and evaluating the usefulness and impact of the toolkit resources.

Project Rationale:

There has never been a greater need for talent attraction, retention, and development in the Windsor-Essex region. On one-hand, demand for skilled workers is at a historic high in our region: according to Statistics Canada, there were more job vacancies in the last quarter of 2018 in Windsor-Sarnia economic region than ever recorded (9,720), employment reached an all-time high in May 2019, and unemployment numbers have remained historically low. Further, employers in Windsor-Essex face chronic labour shortages: in recent consultations with local employers, we found that 78% struggle to fill key positions, while 25% are concerned about the loss of their workforce due to retirements.

On the other hand, the region is vulnerable to systemic losses of important segments of our workforce. For every two working people with a university education who moved to Windsor-Essex from another part of Canada between 2011 and 2016, 3 left. For every 10 working people between the ages of 25 and 44 who moved to Windsor-Essex from another part of Canada in this time frame, 13 left.

Responding to these trends, we will be developing the Strategies for Talent Attraction and Retention Toolkit for Windsor-Essex  (#STARTYQG) to generate locally-specific and evidence-based recommendations for employers, industry associations, and leaders at all levels of government for retaining and attracting our workforce in Windsor and Essex County.

To empower local employers, post-secondary institutions, and various levels of government develop evidence-based talent attraction retention initiatives, we will develop a guide informed by (1) consultation with local businesses and with talent attraction specialists in other regions, and (2) the results of a survey conducted with local skilled workers. Analysis of migration statistics and consideration of the literature on talent attraction and retention in North America will also help us craft locally-specific and credible recommendations applicable at the employer and regional level.

In addition to the guide, we will also be developing two online tools as part of the toolkit. The first is an online mapping tool that will display local company data by sector, called WEmap sectors. This tool will help prospective companies identify supply chain networks, and will help jobseekers and prospective residents identify the range of businesses that exist within their professional field. The second tool is a talent finder mapping tool that employers will be able to use to indicate where there is available talent in Canada and internationally in specific occupations.

Project Contact:

Julian Villafuerte, Project Coordinator and Researcher

226-674-3220 ext. 855