Drawing potential employees to the La Crosse area is the focus of a group discussion Monday morning.

The 'Workforce Innovation for a Strong Economy,’ or WISE plan, was announced Monday with a fundraising goal of $200,000. This project, headed by the '7 Rivers Alliance,’ will focus on creating a ten year workforce recruitment and retention plan for our area.

The hope is this plan will make it easier for local employers to fill vacant positions with knowledgeable employees over the next ten years.

"We talk a lot about a low unemployment rate, which is good, but if a business wants to expand and add more jobs, the pool there is very slim because there's not as many people filling those jobs,” said 7 Rivers Alliance Board President Michael Richards.

The group's first step to creating the WISE plan is to hire consultants to look at every aspect of our area's workforce structure, such as training and education, family care, housing, and transportation. From there the 7 Rivers Alliance will determine which areas need improvements.