Obstacles Cited For Local Business

BlackburnNews.com file photo of Ouellette Ave. in downtown Windsor.

A survey carried out by an assistant professor at the Odette School of Business says the employment picture in Windsor-Essex remains strong, but local companies are growing more concerned about issues like hydro costs, labour costs, and domestic competition.

Pete Mateja conducted this year’s Pulse of the Region survey during the first quarter of this year.

Energy prices concern 75.9% of respondents compared to 69.8% in 2013, while 58.2% are worried about labour costs, and 53.9% about domestic competition.

On the upside, fewer businesses are worried about the border crossing between Windsor and Detroit. Only 48.9% of respondents cited that as a concern. Fewer respondents cited insurance premiums and the lack of skilled labour as obstacles to their success.

When it comes to hiring, 39% of firms added to their workforce in 2013. That’s down from 40.4% in 2012, but up considerably from 2010 when only 12.9% of local companies hired.