MassHire Berkshire Workforce Board (BWB) is the lead workforce development organization in Berkshire County, a rural county in Massachusetts. BWB is proud of its strong partnerships with business leaders, higher education, government, and economic development in the county, and are proud to be responsible for identifying which areas of the local economy need the most help.
Their job got a lot harder when COVID-19 hit in March 2020.
“Before we got the data, we were feeling a bit helpless,” says Shannon Zayac, Manager of Industry Relations at Berkshire Workforce Board. “We were all thinking: how can we help our businesses and workers get through this? Will employment levels bounce back? How long will we be in this state?”
After watching a few of Chmura’s webinars on the economy, the BWB team reached out to Chmura for a custom COVID-19 Impact Study.
In June 2020, Chmura analyzed the impact of COVID-19 on BWB’s local economy. The COVID-19 Impact Study helped Berkshire…
- Understand how bad the situation is. COVID-19’s economic impact can feel overwhelming. Chmura’s impact study quantified exactly how COVID-19 is impacting Berkshire County. That clarity helped BWB realize what they can do to help their region. “I’m a data person,” says Zayac. “I’m able to process things a lot more when I can see the data. Quantifying how bad the economy is makes it a little easier to chew.”
- Collaborate with local partners. “The first thing we did when we got this report was share it with key partners in economic development and government,” says Zayac. “We were really pleased with the report, and really thankful.” BWB also added Chmura’s COVID-19 analysis to the Berkshire Skills Cabinet’s Regional Labor Market Blueprint Update, which helps Massachusetts’ workforce boards work together.
- Take action. Chmura’s COVID-19 study helped Berkshire identify which areas of their economy need their support the most. Armed with that information, Berkshire reached out to local employers to ensure they had their support.
- Have hope. “The COVID-19 Impact Study included a forecast on when employment would start rebounding. Now we’ve been able to see that recovery happening and that’s encouraging,” says Zayac. They’ve also been able to answer media calls confidently and share parts of Chmura’s analysis.
You can read Berkshire Workforce Board’s full COVID-19 Impact Study here.
The Chmura Difference
BWB was extremely pleased with the quality of data and service the Chmura team provided. Here’s what Shannon Zayac had to say:
Timely and useful.
“It was an extremely useful report. Everything was so timely. It helped us make informed workforce decisions, where people need help.”
Shannon Zayac, Manager of Industry Relations at Berkshire Workforce Board.
Leaders in the industry.
“We’ve loved all of your webinars. We thought you guys presented what was happening in the country really well.”
Great customer service.
“It was super easy to work with the Chmura team! They were super responsive. Their collaboration platform, Onstage, made it easy to share reports and data back and forth.”
The Chmura team is happy to help Berkshire Workforce Board understand the effects of COVID-19 on Berkshire County. Do you need a comprehensive picture of how your economy is doing? Contact us today to learn how Chmura’s labor market data and analysis can help you.