Workforce

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The workforce and talent in Williamson County is diverse, highly educated, equip with transferable skills and growing.

In Williamson County, 54% of the workforce has a Bachelor’s degree or higher. Over 18% have a Graduate, Professional or Doctorate degree. It shows that education is a priority here. We also outperform the nation and are a leader in the state with a 95% high school graduation rate. Williamson County consistently has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the state, showing our talented workforce is skilled and very employable.

We also have a full pipeline of talent funneling into the county. With 26 colleges and universities, 6 community colleges and 8 career colleges in the region, it adds up to more than 130,000 students currently enrolled in the Nashville region. A recent study by the Nashville Chamber of Commerce showed that 60% of graduating students remain in the region. Tennessee is also a right to work state.

Labor Force and Unemployment

Chart of Williamson County Labor Force and Unemployment Rate to download.

Wage Surveys

Click here for the 2017 Middle Tennessee Wage & Benefit Industrial Survey Infographic.

For complete Middle Tennessee Greater Nashville Regional Council Wage & Benefit Survey, please click here for the 2017 Full Wage & Benefit Survey provided by Middle Tennessee State University.

Commuting Patterns

Click to enlarge.

Number of commuters to Williamson County from surrounding counties

Find Existing Talent

For past labor reports, click here to visit the TN Department of Labor & Workforce Development.

Other resources to find existing talent:

  • We Build Tech www.webuildtech.com is the online hub for technology jobs and information about the Middle Tennessee region. Create an account to upload your resumé or company’s jobs.
  • Williamson, Inc. Job Board Utilize the Williamson Chamber job board.
  • Workforce Essentials www.workforceessentials.com Williamson County’s Career Center through WorkForce Essentials assists with transition into the local workforce. Services include training, counseling, state-of-the-art resources, support services and employment opportunities with individually-assigned career management specialists.
    Office: Williamson County Career Center, 225 Noah Drive, Ste. 360, Franklin, TN 37064
    Phone: 615-790-3311  Fax: 615-790-5520

Relocate Existing Talent

Considering relocating and wondering if your existing employees will be happy here? Or, already know you are relocating a company here? Let us help you. Contact the Economic Development Office to discuss a customized presentation and/or website to your company and employees to ease the transition into Williamson County. Williamson County has a proven record of relocating existing talent. Click to enlarge.

Attract Talent

As a rapidly growing county with upscale suburbs, large retail and corporate office parks and some of the best schools in the state, it’s no wonder people are moving here from across the US. Click to enlarge.

 

Map of Williamson County influx of talent

ENTREPRENEUR TALENT PROFILES

With an understanding that the entrepreneurs of today will become the large sustainable employers of tomorrow, Williamson, Inc. Economic Development strives to foster a culture that attracts and engages talent from across the globe.

In our talent profiles, we have conducted interviews with several of our most successful entrepreneurs. Each has a unique story that explains how they reached their current success, and they have a wealth of information that could prove invaluable to others looking to start their own business.

By offering our entrepreneurs the support and resources needed to start a business in Williamson County, we hope to foster their innovative ideas and turn them into reality. After reading their profiles, please feel free to reach out to these entrepreneurs for more information.

Jerry Youngblutt, Principal, Boyden & Youngblutt

jerryy@b-y.net  |  615.866.1978  |  b-y.net

Tell me a little about your business and what inspired you to start the company?

We’ve been in business since 1990. It really starting with us feeling like there was a need in the marketplace, since it seemed most businesses didn’t care about return on investment. I ran into Boyden after I had completed my business degree and already had some experience in the market. People did things in our space, but they didn’t know if they were working – if they were actually making the businesses money – nobody asked the question “Are we actually helping somebody?”. I didn’t want to be on the art side of things, because I love art and once you start doing it as a business it isn’t always fun anymore, so Boyden took the art side and I took the strategic business side. If I’m a stock broker and you bring me money, and I can’t tell you if you’re making any money, you’re not going to be in business anymore. We operate in a way that measures how we are benefiting the business.

Why did you pick Williamson County?

In order to grow the business (we had filled the current marketplace – Fort Wayne), we had to look at different markets to grow into, and I was the one who was mobile. I looked at Austin, Nashville, and Tampa. Tampa was the most accessible, I already had connections there, but they weren’t quite ready – the businesses I talked to weren’t killing it. It was between Austin and Nashville, and I just really love the culture and business climate here. After picking Nashville I realized the difficulty of the housing climate as well as finding office space. That’s good and bad, but mostly, it means the market is great. You read the paper here and it’s common to see 1,500 new jobs, I was used to a big headline being 50 new jobs in Indiana. It’s just a different climate. We’ve always been in it for the long haul. The culture shift of moving to a Chicago just didn’t fit our business model. We’re all about building relationships that last decades, and we’ve had the same clients for 10-20 years. In those big cities there’s less happening relationally.

What have been the strengths of operating out of Williamson County?

The Chambers here blew me away, we joined Williamson, Inc., Nashville Chamber and the BBB. The kindness and willingness to help caught me off guard. In the north we always got the impression that they were doing us a huge favor by talking to us. Here it’s the opposite – the first thing out of both Williamson, Inc. and the Nashville Chamber’s mouth was “we’re here for you to help your business grow – what can we do for you?” It’s such an unbelievable thing, and you guys have like 200 events combined. That’s incredible. You get to pick and choose what you go to and there’s tons of networking.

Talk about your experience with the entrepreneur culture here.

People with all this varying experience move into a place for the culture – when the culture is what’s attracting people, it will just get better, and better, and better because of the diversity of people moving in. Your business is going to stymie when you can’t hire the right people. For our business, the people are who you are, it is your business. If we don’t have the right people it fails.

How convenient or inconvenient has Williamson been as a geographic location to do business?

I couldn’t find office space in Nashville – it just wasn’t available. So Williamson was close and we went for it. The proximity to Nashville has been great, and hopefully making it there in 20 minutes doesn’t become an impossibility in the near future. I don’t think I would move now. I think, where would my employees work? And where are my vendor partners? My employees want to be able to go into it, and to be able to take it or leave it (the gulch). It’s expensive and things close at the end of the day when the business community leaves. So I take my cues from the employees. We go into downtown Franklin a lot more than we thought we would. The culture just works here.

What was the biggest challenge to getting started?

Right now we are operating as a semi-satellite operation to our office in Fort Wayne. We certainly hope to grow into a full-fledged operation like we have in Indiana, but until then it’s going to be a support office for them. We’re looking for clients, employees, and consultants (partners). We did a cool thing up there – what you find in our industry is because it’s getting so wide, and each discipline is so complicated, clients want you to have all of it. So we went out and handpicked other businesses to have in our same space, under the premise that if we need to talk to them we can talk to them. Collaboration with your peers is the way it’s going to get done in the future – it’s that simple. To keep your pie from getting splintered off, you have to join forces. That being said there are complications to having operations between 2 locations. We are thinking about having a live Skype feed running constantly between both locations just so we can feel more in touch with what’s going on.

What advice would you give to someone who wants to start a business or is just getting started?

Wrap yourself in as many quality mentors as you can – and LISTEN. You have to take risks, but they need to be calculated. Get yourself a personal board of directors. Don’t listen to their advice and then make your own decision. There are certain mistakes that you have to make, but there are others that are more costly and just unnecessary to go through. Mentors can help identify those. Know that it is endless hours as an entrepreneur. At the beginning you have to dedicate everything to your business. 12 hour days 7 days a week. Not many people are willing to make that sacrifice, so know before going in that you’re one of the few that are.

What gives you the most satisfaction related to this work?

To have a really happy customer – and we have a lot of those just because we go above and beyond. We’re becoming more of a think tank – clients come to us with one problem, and we don’t just solve that problem but we also expand out it and see the bigger picture. They come to us with a question, and we think through the different options. People appreciate thoughtfulness and creativity. It’s all about the client. If it turns out solving the problem involves us, great – if not, we tell them. It’s simple, honest consulting. It’s easier to come up with the solution if you’re only worried about the client. It doesn’t work if you’re already thinking about how you’re going to make money when you’re trying to solve the problem. We’re here to help you grow your career and your company – that’s it. We’re a group of people that likes solving problems.

Anything else you’d like to share?    

People ask me how I know how to run a business. I don’t. I know how not to run a business. I make mistakes, I do stupid stuff, but they’re honest mistakes. Things you couldn’t have known. If you’re honest and sincere you eliminate a lot of hurdles that you would otherwise have to jump. Our goal is that when people come through the door we want them to have no idea who the boss is. We hate hierarchy – we just don’t think it has to be that way. Most people aren’t working for a paycheck, they’re working for how they’re respected and how they feel about their worth at the job. You try to empower vs. overpower. Collaboration is the word for me – it’s always been the thing for us internally, but now it’s also between us and the client (more and more).

Frank-Limpus-Wheelhouse-300x200

Frank Limpus, Principal, Limpus Communications

frank@limpuscommunications.com  |  615.668.9938  |  limpuscommunications.com

Tell me a little about your business.

Limpus Communications is a marketing communications consultancy that helps companies, organizations and individuals better communicate about themselves, their products, their service services and their ideas… to drive more business.  For example, this could be anything from external PR surrounding the launch of a new product to internal communications helping employees better understand upcoming benefits changes or re-branding the company for better positioning.  Clients have included companies in healthcare, banking, financial services, automotive, consumer products, professional services, market research, to name a few.

When did you open here or relocate to Williamson County?

We opened here in 2007.

Why did you pick Williamson County?

Its where my family and I live… and have lived since 1998.  And that’s for the second time…  I lived in Franklin once before from 1983-1986.  We came back here for the schools and the quality of life.

 What have been the strengths of operating out of Williamson County?

From a business perspective, I’ve found the general business-friendly atmosphere, low taxes and the appreciation for the entrepreneurial spirit to be three of Williamson County’s best business attributes.  If you add in the personal benefits, such as schools and general quality of life, there’s an even stronger case for working in Williamson County.

Do you see the entrepreneur culture growing here?

Yes, it will grow as long as all of us work to maintain the current environment and attitude toward business.

What inspired you to start the company?

I once had a mentor tell me to “do what you’ve never done before” when looking for my next challenge.  I had worked in the “field” as a PR director in a university medical center, then worked in a corporate setting at HCA, then in a PR agency in Nashville, then I drove internal communications for five years in another global corporation.  At that time, the one thing I had yet to do was work for myself, which seemed like a natural next step.

How many people were involved at the beginning, and what were their roles?

One… me.  And I did/do everything to get and keep things up and running.

What was the biggest challenge to getting started?

Building the client base.  But that’s where networking — connecting with other business professionals to help each other — came in.  Every piece of business I’ve had, every project I’ve done, has been the result of networking.

How did you overcome that challenge?

Networking was the biggest tool, and that’s where the Chamber has been exceptionally helpful, providing opportunities to connect via all types of meetings, networking, speaking, and volunteering.  But since word-of-mouth can be incredibly powerful in attracting more business, delivering solid results has been critical to growth.

What have been the challenges or obstacles to growing and achieving your long-term goals?

The economic downturn has been the largest challenge, affecting consultants like myself and reducing opportunities.  But it has only delayed — not canceled — some of my long-term goals.

How are you addressing those?

Networking… pure and simple.

How many employees do you have today, and how has your company structure changed?

There’s still only one employee, but that’s by design.  The nice thing, though, is that I have a number of professionals who have the talents I need — designers, videographers, copywriters, researchers, media buyers, other strategists — whom I can call into a project to get the work done. Additionally, because of cost pressures in the marketplace and the availability of technology making collaboration exceptionally easy, I’m seeing my arrangement becoming more of a prevailing business model.  I’ve won business using my model against much larger communications agencies.

What advice would you give to someone who wants to start a business or is just getting started?

Get ready to give it your all.  There will be hard work, long hours, lots of sweat and sacrifice to make the entrepreneurial thing work.  But there’s tons of satisfaction!

What surprised you about this path you’ve taken?

While I had a few doubts — every entrepreneur and business owner has them — I’ve loved all I’ve been able to accomplish in seven short years.

What gives you the most satisfaction related to this work?

The achievements I’ve realized for clients.  I think that really rang true the day I had four media placements for clients — in the Tennessean, the Nashville Business Journal, in a national healthcare trade magazine and in a global B-to-B publication — all in the same day.

What has been your experience of doing business in Williamson County? 

Very positive.  I really appreciate living and working here.

How does the future look?  What’s ahead?

I’m optimistic and in a good growth mode.

Anything else you’d like to share?   

Sure.  If folks are struggling with business problems, many times issues comes down to improving communications with any number of audiences..  If someone would like to explore the challenge they’re facing, they can always reach out to me via www.limpuscommunications.com.   We can start the process over a cup of coffee one morning.  Did I tell you I like to network?

Todd Quillin, President & Owner, QuillCo Business Printing

todd@quillcoprinting.com  |  615.828.6113  |  quillcoprinting.com

Tell me a little about your business.

QuillCo Marketing/Printing Started at the end of 2004, previously I did operations for a brokerage firm in Nashville, where I worked my way from the mailroom to vice-president. After they were acquired by another well know financial institution, I got the chance at a fresh start. I tried my hand at sales, and found a niche-market where small businesses were being underserved by the print industry.  These small businesses could not afford the high cost of print the large corporations offered.

We are not a print shop, but a distributor. If a customer already has artwork, we inspect it and modify the prints we’re given to make sure they look good on paper, then process the order through the appropriate production facility, most of whom only sell through the trade.  They don’t have outside sales – we are their sales force.

Why did you pick Williamson County?

We stumbled into Williamson through a networking event in 2004. There are a lot of small businesses here, and that was the main market I was focused on. Also the majority of referrals were coming from this area, as small businesses were and are doing really well in Williamson. I joined the chamber on the recommendation of a referral, and now live in Williamson and find it a great place to live as well as do business.

Do you see the entrepreneur culture growing here?

Yes – there’s a lot. Every day you her of a new business opening.  The majority of our referrals are entrepreneurs. It’s really a hotbed for entrepreneurs.

What was/is the biggest challenge to running your own business?

You’ve got your good and bad to having your own business. Being your own boss is great, but anybody that thinks you get more free time is wrong. You’re constantly thinking of ways to grow your business, and then the economy went south – how do you survive? I’ve seen printing companies go out of business, and lots of people in all businesses have shut their doors. You have to keep fighting, scratching and clawing for referrals. Building a base in Williamson County with small businesses kept us alive.

How did you overcome that challenge?

Williamson County has thrived through most of the recession. We have a great opportunity right now to grow even more business in middle TN. It’s a hotspot right now, and I did feel slightly insulated being in this area going through the recessions. But still, you can’t get too comfortable or you’ll go out of business.

What advice would you give to someone who wants to start a business or is just getting started?

Do a lot of research in your field and know that it’s something you love. A lot of people have one or the other, they know the field, or they love the field. Having both is key. If you don’t love it try to find something else to start up. Network and find those groups that will help you grow your business. Word of mouth still trumps advertising. You need print and web but word of mouth is the best.

What gives you the most satisfaction related to this work?

The most satisfaction is when you deliver a product and the client goes “Ahhh, this is great!” Seeing the look on their face when they’re happy; when you’ve exceeded their expectations. It’s great when it’s a big business but when it’s a small business/entrepreneur that is just starting up it’s especially exciting because you’ve helped them. That’s why you do what you do. Is there stress at times? Yes, but that’s what keeps you going.

Anything else you’d like to share?    

I was lucky to be in a business I already knew a lot about, but to people who are starting all new with an idea it’s more difficult. Use the resources here, the entrepreneur center, the chamber connections, etc. You can’t have too much input. Reach out to the successful entrepreneurs and listen to avoid some of the mistakes they made in the process. I’m happy to help in any way that I can.