Nov 10 WUSATA office closed for Veterans Day
Nov 23-24 WUSATA office closed for Thanksgiving
Dec 25 WUSATA office closed for Christmas Day
Jan 1 WUSATA office closed for New Year’s Day
Jan 5 CPR Deadline
Jan 24-26 Winter Meeting
The 2017 Summer Meeting focused primarily on implementing a Strategic Planning Process. As participation numbers and export sales have become stagnant, this offers a good opportunity for WUSATA to take an in-depth look into our programs and develop a strong strategic plan and strategy as we move into the 2018 and 2019 Calendar years.
Does Your State have a FundMatch Plan?
WUSATA encourages all western states to internally discuss plans to increase FundMatch participation of suppliers within their state. FundMatch is one of the most important programs USDA/FAS provides to small companies to increase exports of agricultural products, and we find this is a pipeline that needs to continue to be filled on a regular basis. This is a good time to sit down with the stakeholders in your department of agriculture to not only discuss Global Connect activities, but also the FundMatch program.
What is a FundMatch plan? A plan would include setting WUSATA seminar dates early in the year so that there is plenty of time to recruit, allowing a greater number of companies to attend. It would also include spreading the word about FundMatch to any companies that are attending your Inbound or Outbound missions that may not know about this valuable benefit. A quick conversation with companies may get them excited about doubling their international marketing budget. Making personal introductions between the company and our Outreach team would start the conversation and permit more companies to see the benefits they may be missing.
WUSATA’s main goal is to help as many companies as possible utilize funding that is available to help them grow their business. Working together we can achieve that goal!
Our annual compliance review took place last month and it went very efficiently. We appreciate your help in our continued successful outcomes! Additional ways you can help us are: include copies of federal M&IE per diem rates you are charging, OANDA currency conversions for foreign travel, credit card receipts, and activity reports in your claim submissions. This not only keeps claims clean and complete for compliance, but makes payment turn-around time even faster.
Country Progress Reports (CPR): Now is the time to start writing your CPRs for all closed activities while everything is fresh in your mind. Watch your email for formatting instructions from the WUSATA Global Connect Team in November with a deadline of January 5, 2018.
Country Work Groups: Preparations for the Winter Meeting break-out sessions have begun! An email was recently sent out regarding which market work groups you wish to join in 2018.
Evaluation collection reminder: WUSATA interns have been busy collecting 2017 initial evaluations and will soon be reaching out to state members for assistance on companies that have been contacted over four times without a response. If you are in communication with companies in your state participating in WUSATA activities, please encourage them to visit their MyWUSATA dashboard regularly and complete any outstanding action items. If companies have questions regarding their dashboard action items or the evaluation process, please urge them to contact the WUSATA office for assistance.
WUSATA has started holding quarterly Euromonitor trainings – refreshers on commonly-used reports, as well as new ways to view valuable information. Euromonitor is a vast system of proprietary data with enormous benefits related to the exports of food and agricultural products. We ask that our project managers become familiar with pulling reports rather than asking our Euromonitor personnel to pull them for you and therefore encourage you to join our quarterly calls. Our Euromonitor representative, Patti LaGuire, is always available for your questions or additional training at firstname.lastname@example.org or 312-477-8932
Looking ahead to 2018, outreach activities will be more vital to increasing participation in our programs and services. The Outreach team will be contacting the member states the beginning of January to plan and secure dates for outreach activities. Getting a head start allows more time for recruitment and executing a valuable outreach event. WUSATA would like to have more consistency in our Outreach on an annual/bi-annual basis in order to grow participation in our programs. Once the Outreach team receives the date and type of activity you wish to have, we will take care of the rest of the details for you! Please contact WUSATA Outreach and Marketing Coordinator, Chloe Moesch, if you already have dates in mind.
As a friendly reminder, the Outreach staff is very appreciative when you refer companies who want to learn more about WUSATA and our services – from one-on-one consultations to help navigating their MyWUSATA account. Many of you regularly email introductions between the company and WUSATA staff, which is a great warm hand-off. You can also email the company’s contact information to email@example.com and we will take it from there. This in return helps us guide new companies through our programs and gain more participation!
Contracting: Now is a great time to start requesting 2018 contractors' proposals. It’s never too early to request a proposal, as most of you have already set concrete activity dates. Your contractor will appreciate the opportunity for early planning, and be able to provide WUSATA companies with those premium buyers who require advanced planning.
Recruiting: As many of you have discovered, there is no time like the present for early recruiting. Our companies appreciate the ability to plan ahead for activities, and our first quarter 2018 activities will be here before we know it! Please feel free to let us know if there is anything we can do to help you in this effort.
Marketing Material Request: The year is winding down and now is the perfect time to take inventory of your WUSATA marketing materials and restock for the coming year. The WUSATA Materials Check Out form can be found on your dashboard, under the WUSATA Operations button, WUSATA Operations (drop-down on right side of page), News & Outreach Marketing Materials. Once completed, please email WUSATA’s Outreach and Marketing at firstname.lastname@example.org so the team can put together the order, and send it your way. They will notify you when received, and when it ships.
Idaho – Chelsea Conlon – email@example.com – 208-332-8678
Montana – Steph Hystad – firstname.lastname@example.org – 406-444-5425
Washington – Zachary Garza – email@example.com – 509-249-6910
Washington – Elisa Daun – firstname.lastname@example.org – 206-471-8688
Outreach/Marketing Coordinator – Monica Quenette – email@example.com – 360-693-3373 x 310
Global Connect & Claims Coordinator – Brittany Chauhan – firstname.lastname@example.org – 360-693-3373 x 319