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Attendees at the Billings reception. Photo courtesy of Thomas Kurdy, Ndigena.

Last week I got to attend the Montana High Tech Business Alliance CEO Roundtable and reception in Billings.  This was the first reception to take place in Billings, and it was great to see over 70 people assemble at Yellowstone Bank to network and discuss the workforce of the Billings community.

Members travelled from Missoula, Helena, and Bozeman to attend the event, joined by Billings members and several Billings-area companies as guests.  Since the reception the Alliance has already added new members in Billings, including Employee Benefits Management Services (EBMS) and Kampgrounds of America (KOA).

Among the other attendees were representatives of higher education, including Rocky Mountain College, MSU Billings City College, the University of Montana – Missoula, and Montana State University – Bozeman. It was especially great to see computer science instructors from Missoula and Billings connect with one another.

At the CEO roundtable, discussion focused on workforce attraction and retention, particularly the importance of company culture.  In addition, Kathy Boelter, President of Arrow Solutions Group, and Brittney Souza, Director of BillingsWorks at Big Sky Economic Development, shared an overview of workforce development initiatives in Billings.

The Montana High Tech Business Alliance is a statewide association focused on creating more high-paying jobs in Montana.  Its members enjoy benefits such as networking with other high tech and manufacturing companies, increased visibility across the state, and an online jobs portal recruiting tool.  The Alliance has done great things over the past two years, and I encourage you to visit their website and see how you can get involved.