Ambassador event recap: Selecting Greater Phoenix
Gwynnie Bee, ADP and USAA share why they expanded to Greater Phoenix
When a company makes the decision to relocate or expand to Greater Phoenix, that decision is based on many factors. To gain a better understanding of the reasons behind the decision, Greater Phoenix Economic Council (GPEC) held an Ambassador event featuring representatives from three recent locates: Gwynnie Bee, ADP and USAA. With more than 100 attendees in the audience, we planned for a robust and informative conversation.
When Gwynnie Bee, ADP and USAA were on the search of business expansion relocation, they all had one thing in common: Greater Phoenix was on the radar.
GPEC’s Vice President of Business Development, Thomas Maynard, moderated the panel discussion featuring Laura Lynn Smith, Division Vice President/General Manager at ADP; Robert Escobar, Consultant/Vice President of Operations at Gwynnie Bee; and Brian Parks, IT Director of Workforce Strategy at USAA.
Our panelists shared their experiences and insights on:
What started in a small loft on the east coast, Gwynnie Bee is now a major player in the clothing distribution industry. When Gwynnie Bee searched for their second facility, Greater Phoenix stood out in terms of having a talented labor pool and a good proximity to a broader customer base.
“The economics in terms of labor cost and real estate in Reno, Vegas and Phoenix were fairly even,” says Robert Escobar, Consultant/Vice President of Operations, Gwynnie Bee. “The tipping point was looking at the size and quality of labor market, which is why we ultimately selected Greater Phoenix.”
Gwynnie Bee has already began hiring talent in the region and plans to hire many more people over the next few years.
Culture and Diversity
With a 96% retention rate for tech employees, USAA’s strong focus on diversity and inclusion aligns closely with Greater Phoenix’s talent pool.
According to Brian Parks, IT Director for Workforce Strategy, USAA, “Culture is a big component of what USAA is all about. From a location perspective, we decided to go where talent is willing to go and followed where the culture fits.”
Additionally, with USAA being located in the far north part of the region, they knew they might face some recruitment challenges. Knowing that they valued a workforce that came together at the office daily, they created the USAA van pool. This branded Wi-Fi-enabled multi-passenger van picks up employees in other parts of the region and transports them to the office and back home daily. It’s creative ideas like this that has helped recruit talent and build the USAA culture here in Greater Phoenix.
With offices globally, ADP selected to expand to Greater Phoenix largely because of the access to talent that would not only meet their current labor needs, but also help them build for the future. ADP quickly built strong relationships and became connected to the region’s strong educational system, bringing quality talent to their company.
On top of ADP being located next to Arizona State University’s main campus, the company offers internship programs during the semester and even positions to recent college graduates.
Having a robust labor market, vibrant culture, diversity and strong educational system are reasons why Greater Phoenix is selected as a desirable market for company expansion and relocation decisions. Are you interested in building a more vibrant economy in Greater Phoenix and helping to tell our region’s story? Become an Ambassador – learn more.