The new normal for the West Midlands

  • Karl Edge, Partner |

2 min read

Being resilient and adaptable is the West Midlands’ main strength, but how can businesses collaborate to meet the region’s growth ambitions?

COVID-19 has given many businesses the opportunity to accelerate their plans to address the need for up-skilling and use of new technologies.  The regional economy will hugely benefit from this as they seek to position themselves to recharge the West Midlands in life after the pandemic.

It is more important than ever for the public and private sector to work together to address challenges both for the here and now and for the years ahead.  To support a more resilient and diversified economy, innovation, technical expertise and funding from private businesses is required to complement local government agendas.  This is of great importance and should be redefined to boost the levelling up agenda. 

For me, the drive to support transformation is threefold:

Championing innovation through technology and data insights

Harnessing the region’s entrepreneurial spirit by supporting traditional businesses in furthering their innovation will be critical. Whether a business is exploring ideas for new products, services or solutions, helping them to focus on their strengths and how best to secure funding for future growth will be integral in their drive towards a first-class customer experience.

Embracing new industries

The Midlands is at the heart of thriving industry. By embracing new industries like Health & Life Sciences we will be helping to shore up the region for future generations. The recent investment of £210million for the Edgbaston Life Sciences Hub is a great endorsement for Birmingham and a shining example of how we can attract talent into our jobs market.

In addition to Health and Life Sciences, we’re seeing an increasing number of businesses using technology to develop green and energy-efficient sites. By seizing on these types of capabilities, businesses are able to identify avoidable costs, helping to further shore up their business resilience and future strategy.  

Leveraging better transport links for job creation

The Midlands is well placed for securing job opportunities for HS2 development plans. Furthermore, maximising the plans for better transport links by extending the Metro and other local connectivity will go a long way in opening up broader employment opportunities for those in the region. This will be crucial in the region’s endeavour to recharge and grow. Sticking to the theme of transport and job creation, we’re proud to support accelerated sectors like automotive, delivering fresh perspectives in a fast-moving world.  It’s been great to witness the Government’s £100million + investment in the new UK Battery Industrialisation Centre, which is currently under construction near Coventry. This really is utilising the expertise and ambition the region has to offer.

A moment in time

We are going through a tough moment in time, but we have proven resilient before and we will continue to encourage collaboration and innovation in our bid to continue our growth journey. Now more than ever we stand alongside our clients, communities and key regional stakeholders to support the recovery of the region.

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