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Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez
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FY 2004 Annual Performance Plan

Overview of the DOL Strategic Plan

The Department of Labor's current Strategic Plan for FY 2003–2008 was submitted to Congress on September 30, 2003.  The plan outlines the mission, vision, departmental structure, four strategic goals, and attendant outcome and performance goals and forms the basis for the revisions to the FY 2004 Annual Performance Plan. The plan facilitates increased coordination and fosters greater cohesion within the Department. Through these strategic goals, DOL staff and the American public can see a direct link between the Department's purpose, its activities, and its vision for the future.

The Department began its formal strategic and performance planning process in 1997. A Strategic and Performance Planning Workgroup comprised of representatives of the major DOL agencies develops the Department's Annual Performance Plans and periodically updates and revises the Strategic Plan. To shepherd and synchronize implementation activities to comply with the Government Performance and Results Act of 1993 (GPRA), Secretary Chao established the Center for Program Planning and Results, in support of her commitment to a results-driven Department of Labor. The Department has emphasized continuous improvement in the outcome focus of goals and performance measures as well as the effectiveness of strategies in achieving higher levels of performance during the development of each succeeding plan. Program Reviews with Agency executives are held to evaluate progress towards current annual performance goals.

The Department's Strategic Plan which sets the long-term objectives and direction of core mission responsibilities was originally prepared in 1997 in accordance with the requirements of GPRA. The DOL Strategic Plan was revised in the summer of 1999, primarily to reflect the programs and objectives of the Workforce Investment Act (WIA), and was finalized in September 2000, following the negotiation of WIA performance goals with the States.

During the second quarter of FY 2002, the Department initiated the process of updating and revising the Strategic Plan to highlight the Secretary's vision and goals for guiding the Department to more effectively serve the needs of the 21st Century workforce. The Secretary's vision is to ensure that all American workers have as fulfilling and financially rewarding a career as they aspire to have and to make sure that no worker is left behind in the dynamic, global economy of the new millennium. Both workers and employers will confront a continuing shift from manufacturing to service jobs, requiring a more skilled workforce.

The Department of Labor, for its part, will need to adapt its strategic direction and practices to recognize the changing nature of the 21st Century workforce and workplace. For example, the Department's new strategies will feature the use of a variety of educational and compliance assistance approaches to persuade a much larger proportion of employers than can be reached through traditional inspection programs of the value of providing a safe and healthful work environment where all workers have opportunities for rewarding careers. The Department will also expand choices and improve the results of our programs, for example, by enlisting the participation of faith-based and community organizations to offer their services to workers seeking DOL assistance.

This FY 2004 Annual Performance Plan represents a bridge between the Department's FY 1999–2004 Strategic Plan and the newly published FY 2003–2008 Strategic Plan. The Department has retained its three strategic goals — A Prepared Workforce, A Secure Workforce, and Quality Workplaces — and added the fourth goal — A Competitive Workforce, to express the Secretary's vision that America's workers, with leadership and support from the Department, will be positioned to maximize the opportunities afforded by the dynamic changes forecast as the century unfolds.

2.1 Mission

The Department of Labor promotes the welfare of the job seekers, wage earners, and retirees of the United States by improving working conditions, expanding opportunities for training and profitable employment, protecting retirement and health care benefits, helping employers find workers, strengthening free collective bargaining, and tracking changes in employment, prices, and other national economic measurements.

2.2 Vision

The Department of Labor will help workers and their families share in the American dream through better wages, more secure pensions and health benefits, and expanded economic opportunities while fostering safe and healthful workplaces that are free from discrimination.

2.3  DOL Strategic Goals

Through the strategic goals referenced in the introduction to Section 2 above, the Department, its partners, and the American public can see a direct link between the Department's mission and its activities. Associated with each of these goals are specific programs designed to implement the Department of Labor's core responsibilities. These programs are highlighted under the appropriate strategic goal in Section 4, FY 2004 Performance Goals, Strategies and Cross-Cutting Programs.

2.4 DOL Organization

The Department of Labor is organized into major program areas, or agencies, each headed by an Assistant Secretary or other agency head that administers the various statutes and programs for which the Department is responsible. These programs are carried out through a network of regional offices and a series of field, district, and area offices, as well as, in some cases, through local-level grantees and contractors. Some of these agencies are directly responsible for the achievement of the goals described in this plan, while others provide indirect support. The agencies are listed in alphabetical order.

  • Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)
  • Bureau of International Labor Affairs (ILAB)
  • Center for Faith-Based and Community Initiatives (CFBCI)
  • Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA)
  • Employment and Training Administration (ETA)
  • Employment Standards Administration (ESA)
  • Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA)
  • Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)
  • Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP)
  • Office of Small Business Programs (OSBP)
  • Office of the Assistant Secretary for Administration and Management (OASAM)
  • Office of the Assistant Secretary for Policy (OASP)
  • Office of the Chief Financial Officer (OCFO)
  • Office of Inspector General (OIG)
  • Office of the Solicitor (SOL)
  • Office of the 21st Century Workforce
  • Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC)
  • Veterans' Employment and Training Service (VETS)
  • Women's Bureau (WB)

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