Measuring Success

Economic development practitioners provide ‘aftercare’ services to companies that have agreed to move to the community or are already located there.  Communities typically provide support through one or more of the following common  strategies:

These practices are comprised of several activities each.  The most common metrics to assess the success of these activities relate to the number of companies assisted in various aspects of the aftercare process.  The figure below illustrates how different outputs are tied to each strategy for providing aftercare services to prospects.

FDI Aftercare Practice and Most Common Metrics

Outcome metrics reflect broader policy goals and should improve based on the results from the activities (even if the improvements are often so small that they are difficult to discern).

Desired Business Incentive Outcomes for FDI:
• Total new-to-region FDI (value and number of deals).
• Total investment by international investors (value and number of deals).
• Value of Mergers & Acquisitions involving international firms (number and value of deals).
• Benchmark value of increased FDI to regional economy (e.g., GDP).

Output Success Indicators

Metrics benchmark performance and drive improvements in the activities that a community undertakes. Following are the most common output metrics used to measure results for key categories of activities.  Practitioners may use these as a starting point to guide the selection of metrics that matter for their efforts.

Business Operations Start-up Outputs

  • Number of announced FDI firms assisted in starting up their operations
  • Number of jobs created by new FDI firms

Expansion Support Outputs

  • Number of foreign-owned firms assisted
  • Number of jobs created by FDI firm expansions

Regulatory and Intermediary Navigation Outputs

  • Number of firms assisted
  • Customer satisfaction with progress made in responding to identified issues

Business Executive and Worker Engagement Outputs

  • Number of executives engaged in relevant activities
  • Number of employees assisted
  • Customer satisfaction with services provided

Foreign-owned Start-ups and Scale-ups Outputs

  • Number of new foreign-owned start-ups or scale-ups assisted

M&A Outputs

  • Perception of community by new owners
  • Number of foreign-owned acquisitions
  • Number of jobs created or retained by M&A investment