Providing Public Workforce Services to Job Seekers: 15-month Impact Findings on the WIA Adult and Dislocated Worker Programs
In June 2008, the Employment and Training Administration awarded a contract to Mathematica Policy Research, working with subcontractors Social Policy Research Associates, MDRC, and the Corporation for a Skilled Workforce, to conduct a rigorous impact evaluation of the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) Adult and Dislocated Worker programs. This report presents the study's findings on the short-term impacts of the programs. It focuses on the effectiveness of the availability of WIA-funded training and intensive services (primarily staff-assisted employment services), both separately and together. It presents estimated impacts on employment and earnings and other outcomes of the services based on customers' experiences during the 15 months after they were found eligible for intensive services, the point of random assignment. Participants were enrolled into the evaluation between 2011 and 2013, prior to the passage of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA).
First authorized under WIA and then reauthorized under WIOA, the Adult and Dislocated Worker programs are two of the nation's largest publicly funded programs providing employment and training services. Although the study occurred under WIA, its findings are still relevant under WIOA. While WIOA made important changes to the workforce system, it did not significantly change the basic set of services that the American Job Centers offered, nor who was eligible to receive those services. In addition, many of the important changes explicitly introduced by WIOA reflected changes the local areas were already making under WIA.
The study relied on UI and WIA program administrative data, individual-level participant surveys, and data from the National Directory of New Hires.
The study's final report will present estimated impacts of the services based on customers' experiences for a longer period, 30 months, and will also examine impacts on employment and earnings using administrative data from the National Directory of New Hires. It will also present results of the evaluation's cost-benefit analysis.
Affiliation: Mathematica Policy Research, Social Policy Research Associates, MDRC, and the Corporation for a Skilled Workforce
Authors: Sheena McConnell, Kenneth Fortson, Dana Rotz, Peter Schochet, Paul Burkander, Linda Rosenberg, Annalisa Mastri, Ronald D'Amico,
Key Words: Workforce Investment Act, public workforce system, Adult Program, Dislocated Worker Program, evaluation of WIA Adult and Dislocated Worker programs, Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, job seeker services, employment services, employment-related services, employment-related training, impact of training programs, National Directory of New Hires