Tampa Bay Works

Tampa Bay Works, an initiative of the Tampa Bay Partnership, is a regional, industry-led response to the talent deficit in Tampa Bay.


In 2017, the Partnership collaborated with United Way Suncoast and the Community Foundation of Tampa Bay to produce the inaugural Regional Competitiveness Report.

The study took a comprehensive look at the region’s strengths and weaknesses across a diverse set of indicators, and measured its performance against 19 peer and aspirational communities nationwide. The results sent stark warning signals regarding the challenges the Tampa Bay region faces related to its talent supply.

Armed with this alarming data, the Partnership convened more than 30 CEOs and senior HR executives from top employers in Tampa Bay to dig deeper, and develop an actionable plan to address the issue. With a $300,000 grant from JPMorgan Chase, the group retained TIP Strategies to gather labor market data, facilitate stakeholder conversations, map the talent supply chain and workforce ecosystem, identify gaps in the system, and explore best practices around the country.

The year-long research effort pointed to deep and meaningful employer engagement as the missing piece of the puzzle when it comes to solving our regional workforce challenges.

In response, the Partnership launched Tampa Bay Works, an employer-led, demand-driven regional workforce initiative, drawing from successful models in other markets across the United States.

Employers are now working together to identify high-demand positions, definite the skills those jobs require, and create a stronger alignment between those who produce our talent and those who need it.


It’s Regional.

Tampa Bay Works encompasses the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater MSA (including Hillsborough, Pinellas, Pasco and Hernando counties) to formalize a structure for regional coordination.

It’s Employer-Led.

Tampa Bay Works provides a powerful platform for employers to define their needs, drive the priorities and speak with a collective voice to education and workforce training providers.

It’s Demand-Driven.

Tampa Bay Works identifies and pilots workforce models that align education and workforce training efforts with the needs of employers, and provides the resources to support them.


Tampa Bay Works is helping Tampa Bay businesses more clearly and collectively communicate their talent needs to educational institutions, workforce development organizations and job seekers.

As our initial project, we’ve established two employer collaboratives with industries willing to take a deep, granular approach to filling their talent pipeline, using the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s Talent Pipeline Management® (TPM) model.

A robust RFI process in 2019 identified two industries – healthcare and manufacturing – that had reached a critical pain point in meeting their talent demands. The process established by these collaboratives will be used to replicate the program across other industries and talent clusters.

With our employers working together and speaking with a collective voice, we can give our talent suppliers more clarity and focus. This will allow them to create an organized, strategic response that ensures Tampa Bay businesses have access to the talent they need, and our residents have access to better economic opportunities.

This is a new model for Tampa Bay; one that is redefining the current dynamic and creating a systemic, structural change in the market.

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