Planning Resources

Map of the four states with the Joplin economic region highlighted Research Services

Decision-level business leaders and the news media consider the WIB as the preferred source of market trends and projections. Local Chambers of Commerce and Economic Development Organizations use the WIB as an extension of their outreach for business attraction and expansion efforts. The WIB’s handle on market intelligence and its technical assistance role are vital for development strategies that boost the economic well-being of the region.  Empire District Electric Company is a proud sponsor of research services at the WIB.  More >

Regional Initiatives

The WIB represents the workforce system in dynamic partnerships that help set goals and target resources to improve the region’s economic well-being. Efforts like Certified Work Ready Communities, Joplin Regional Partnership all rely on the WIB for resources and expertise to connect a qualified and available workforce as often the most crucial element for success.  More on Projects and Initiatives >

Labor Supply Studies

The WIB commissioned Growth Services Group to conduct the labor study over the Spring and Summer months. Four different versions of the study are available based on the concentration of geography. In addition to the basic study of the seven county WIB area, GSG produced a report specifically covering the counties served by the Joplin Regional Partnership with neighboring member counties in Kansas and Oklahoma. The also WIB commissioned studies for the Joplin MSA of Jasper and Newton Counties along with a study focusing the employment concentration of Barry and Lawrence Counties. Read More >>>

Cluster Mapping and Regional Competitiveness

Digging deeper into the clusters that power the economy of the greater Joplin region just got easier. The U.S. Cluster Mapping Project provides open, interactive data to understand regional clusters and support business, innovation and policy. The Joplin Region is one of 179 Economic Areas tracked by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis and an example of a region that covers more than one state line geography. More on Cluster Mapping and Regional Competitiveness >

Workforce System Planning

The WIB administers specific functions of the public workforce system, both community-based services and at the region’s two job centers in Joplin and Monett.  Both state and federal grant sources require an Integrated Workforce System Operations Plan that governs the use of resources for the Workforce Investment Act and the administration of the region’s job center locations.  More on Workforce System Planning >

Full Labor Market Economic Analysis:  In December 2012, WIB research analyst Frank Neely prepared a comprehensive report on current and projected employment opportunities along with a human capital analysis.  The full report is available for download as a PDF.


The WIB integrates its workforce development strategies and resources with the logistical assets of fellow collaborators in regional economic and community development. This alignment empowers the WIB proactive techniques to meet the demands of changes in labor market due to factors such as natural disasters or economic shifts.


Guiding principles that support the WIB’s mission are engagement, innovation, leadership, accountability, and focus. The WIB exercises fiscal stewardship and strives for return on investment in the portfolio of resources it oversees for workforce development. Well-defined and established outcomes demonstrate that the system is working. Staff at all levels of the WIB receive frequent training and monitor the region’s workforce system for compliance with applicable regulations.

Project Management and Event Coordination

Special projects, initiatives, and events demonstrate how WIB strategies are executed to benefit customers and stakeholders throughout the region. WIB staff work with volunteers and grant resources to achieve deliverables and performance requirements of projects as stipulated in WIB contracts and strategic plans. The WIB manages project execution to ensure adherence to budget, schedule, and scope through project plans with objectives, technologies, systems, information specifications, schedules, communications, funding, responsibilities, etc.