Getting the Message Out:  Disseminating Labor Market Information

Reports on lessons from Department of Labor green jobs grantees’ efforts to disseminate labor market information (LMI) created during the 18-month grant period.

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Identifying Gaps and Setting Priorities for Employment and Training Research

Summarizes recent research to identify current gaps in employment and training research and to make recommendations for future research processes and priorities that could better inform policymakers, practitioners, job seekers,…

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Improving Access to Apprenticeship: Strengthening State Policies and Practices

Describes state efforts for engaging employers through outreach, apprentice recruitment, and training subsidies while strengthening linkages to postsecondary and workforce development systems and improving entry and completion rates among low-skilled…

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Connecting the Disconnected: Improving Education and Employment Outcomes Among Disadvantaged Youth

Reviews recent trends in employment outcomes for disadvantaged youth, focusing specifically on those who have become “disconnected” from school and the labor market, and why these trends have occurred.

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The Changing Contours of Long-Term Unemployment: The Need for a More Radical Policy

Examines the demographics of the long-term unemployed for the years 2007 to 2010 and compares them to the years 1991 to 1994 to see what changes have occurred specifically among the long-term unemployed.

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What Works in Job Training

When it comes to job training, what does available evidence tell us about what works?  What Works in Job Training: A Synthesis of The Evidence summarizes what we know about improving employment and educational outcomes for both adults and youth.The report was prepared through a partnership between the U.S. Department of Labor, Commerce, Education, and Health and Human Services.

But it’s not enough that one study or evaluation said something works – this summary looks at only the most rigorous evaluations, such as impact studies that can point to the results that happened as a result of a particular initiative.  This means there is higher likelihood you will get the same results if you try the approach studied.

Webinars: Learn How To Maximize Your Use of Workforce System Strategies

Have you wished for an easy-to-use repository of recent workforce development research? Are you looking for ways to get the word out about your organization’s workforce development-related research findings? Do you have clients in the workforce system who need access to evidence-based findings? Take a look at the two webinars developed to provide interactive demonstrations on using the Workforce System Strategy site and real world examples of how we can help you find the resources you need.

Workforce System Strategies: A Tool for the Research Community
This short Webinar is designed specifically to introduce the workforce development research community to the research and implementation tools profiled on Workforce System Strategies. The webinar includes an interactive demonstration of what the site can do for you. You will also hear how this tool relates to ETA-sponsored research, as well as the Department-wide research efforts of DOL’s Chief Evaluation Office.

Beyond Best Practices: Workforce System Strategies
This short webinar takes an interactive look at a Workforce System Strategies with the workforce development professional in mind. Two workforce peers serving as interviewees offering real examples from their work, it demonstrates how to quickly find multiple resources that will help design a new program, develop policy, write grant proposals, conduct research, and more.


Tutorial Offers

Quick Navigation Tips

Learn to quickly mine the rich resources on Workforce System Strategies!  Use this short on-line tutorial to help you find what you want, more efficiently and effectively. 



Workforce System Strategies highlights a wide range of research and implementation tools.

Use it to:
• Help your job-seeker and employer customers achieve better outcomes
• Identify evidence that may be useful in program design initiatives or grant applications
• Be at the forefront of the workforce system!

Tell Us What You Think!

Please contact us with your thoughts!  What is useful – and what is not? What additional features would you like to see?



Apprenticeships as a Path to Prosperity

For generations, the apprenticeship model has provided workers with a roadmap to a skills-based career. As the workforce system looks to further develop career pathways, apprenticeships will play a key role in providing individuals work-based training and long-term career options with progressive responsibilities and wages.  To learn more about Registered Apprenticeships in the United States and their potential role in the career pathways model, explore the following the WSS profiles that highlight outcomes among Registered Apprenticeship participants, promising practices around apprenticeship models, and policy recommendations for enhanced employer integration and participant access.

  • An Effectiveness Assessment and Cost-Benefit Analysis of Registered Apprenticeship in 10 States: Final Report.  July 2012.  This non-experimental impact analysis of Registered Apprenticeship programs examines the effectiveness and cost-benefit of apprenticeship programs across ten states.  The report found that Registered Apprenticeship participants received substantially higher earnings than non-participants, and the benefits of the programs largely outweighed the costs.  The authors also give particular emphasis to women participants by detailing the barriers female apprentices face and best practices for supporting female success in RA programs.
  • Innovations in Apprenticeship: 5 Case Studies That Illustrate the Promise of Apprenticeship in the United States.  September 2014.  This analysis explores five innovative apprenticeship programs across the United States across a range of industries, including healthcare, information technology, and metalworking.  In addition to describing the program itself, this report discusses sponsoring employers, occupational pathways, and the role of intermediaries in the apprenticeship model.  This report provides strategies for sector expansion and increased program enrollment.
  • 21st Century Registered Apprenticeship: A Shared Vision for Increasing Opportunity, Innovation, and Competitiveness for American Workers and Employers.  January 2013.  This report from the Secretary of Labor’s Advisory Committee on Apprenticeship includes a brief Registered Apprenticeship (RA) history and recommendations for propelling apprenticeships forward as a viable solution for 21st century education and workforce needs.  Under the mantra “Out-Educate, Out-Build, and Out-Innovate,” the report authors present four goals: 1) increase the number of businesses and industries using quality RA programs; 2) view RA as a valuable post-secondary pathway to a rewarding career; 3) increase access to RA programs among diverse American populations; and 4) reflect the value and power of RA programs in public policy addressing economic and workforce development challenges.

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Training and Post-Secondary Educational Options for Veterans

In honor of those who have served our country in the armed forces this November 11th, the WSS team would like to highlight resources that discuss opportunities for veterans in the workplace and classroom.

Upon return to civilian life, many veterans choose to expand upon their technical skills and education by seeking additional employment training or returning to post-secondary studies.  Veterans receive priority of service in all of the public workforce programs funded by the Department of Labor, and as such, veterans have access to a range of workforce and education-specific services to meet their needs.  Moving forward, policy-makers and practitioners may want to build upon existing policies and programs to increase positive outcomes for veterans.  The following publications are among a few in the WSS profiles collection that describe the workforce supports and classroom challenges for returning veterans.

  • Evaluation of the Priority of Service Provision of the Jobs for Veterans Act by the Workforce Investment System in Providing Service to Veterans and Other Covered Persons.  June 2010.  This report assesses the extent to which the priority of service requirements under the Jobs for Veterans Act are being met, with a particular focus on implementation at the local and state levels through the One-Stop Career Center [American Jobs Center] system.  The authors found significant variability across states in how Priority of Service is implemented.  Guidance issued in November 2010, the Training and Employment Notice 15-10 clarifies the protocol for implementing priority of service for veterans and eligible spouses in all Qualified Job Training in whole or in part by the U.S. Department of Labor.
  • In Country, on Campus: A Study of Combat Veteran Integration into Higher Education.  July 2011.  This study provides insight on the effect of Iraq and Afghanistan War veterans’ combat zone experiences on educational engagement, as well as describes the measures taken by colleges and universities to aid veterans returning to school.  Information gathered from interviews and focus groups was used to assess veterans’ approaches to higher education.  Veterans identified challenges in the social and cultural realms when returning to college, but on the whole, felt well prepared for the academic requirements.  Based on veteran feedback, the authors recommend colleges provide services specifically tailored to veterans, including an orientation, peer mentoring groups, and the creation of an on-campus Student-Veterans’ Affairs Specialist.
  • Veterans Education: Coming Home to the Community College Classroom.  January 2010.  This report identifies the needs of veterans enrolled in community colleges and evaluates whether colleges are equipped to provide programs and services essential to meeting those needs.  Focusing on veterans from the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars, the authors discovered five emerging themes around veterans' needs, including 1) credit streamlining, which improves the process of transferring coursework credit from the military and other institutions; 2) streamlining of programs and services; 3) faculty, counselor, and advisor training on Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and related disorders; 4) veteran-specific difficulties; and 5) factors contributing to a veteran-friendly campus.

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Anti-Poverty, Self-Sufficiency, and Incentive Programs: Connections to Long-Term Employment

Employment incentive programs provide earned benefits to poor and low-income individuals as they reach particular employment benchmarks.  While various incentive programs require certain conditions to be met, workforce practitioners and policy makers continue to look for the right combination of factors that will ultimately lead to enhanced employment, quality of life, and self-sufficiency for American workers.  The following WSS profiles highlight two incentive programs aimed at reducing poverty and increasing self-sufficiency across the last two decades.  These studies discuss lessons learned about efficacy of incentive programs, identify promising practices around the incentive model, and provide background for emerging programs.

Level 1:
Implementing a Conditional Cash Transfer Program in Two American Cities: Early Lessons from Family Rewards 2.0.  October 2014.  This resource examines a second round anti-poverty program, Family Rewards 2.0, implemented in the Bronx and Memphis, Tennessee in which low-income families were provided immediate cash assistance if parents met requirements in three domains: work, health, and children’s education.  Early results from the study show that almost all families earned some rewards; and -during the second round of the program, families understood the conditional cash transfer and rewards system better than the families in the first round.
Can Work Incentives Pay for Themselves? Final Report on the Self-Sufficiency Project for Welfare Applicants.  July 2002.  This study examines the Self-Sufficiency Project (SSP) which provided monthly cash assistance to single parents receiving long-term income assistance.  The program required parents to work a minimum of 30 hours per week and not collect income assistance in order to receive the cash assistance payments.  Using a random design to study participants over the course of 6 years, the study found that SSP increased full-time employment and reduced income assistance for five years.

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