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Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez
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DOL Annual Report, Fiscal Year 2009
Performance and Accountability Report

Strategic Goal 2: A Competitive Workforce

Meet the competitive labor demands of the worldwide economy by enhancing the effectiveness and efficiency of the workforce development and regulatory systems that assist workers and employers in meeting the challenges of global competition.

America's success in the global economy depends largely on a workforce that responds to employers' demand for skilled workers. Through partnerships with State and local workforce agencies, business and industry, education and training providers, faith-based and community organizations, and economic development agencies, DOL makes strategic investments in job training and increases accessibility and quality of information to help match workers with employers.

DOL agencies and offices supporting this goal are:

  • Employment and Training Administration (ETA),
  • Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP), and
  • Bureau of International Labor Affairs (ILAB).

Erin did not envision working as a composites technician when she enrolled at Davis Applied Technology College in Kaysville, Utah. However, in 2008, she learned about the Composites Program – funded in part by DOL’s Community Based Job Training Grants – and became interested because the work was hands-on, varied, and the program would qualify her for numerous employment opportunities. She saw great opportunity for women in this field. Erin completed the training program in six months and was immediately hired by ITT Technical Institute. Though she is one of very few women working on the floor, she is enjoying a very good work experience. Erin says, “This has been very positive for me. There are so many opportunities for growth within the composites industry and so much potential in the United States as well as around the world. It was a great decision.”

[Photo credit: DOL/ETA]

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Fostering a competitive workforce means helping American workers acquire valuable skills and adapt to rapidly evolving markets. Customized training and assistance to workers — including those with unique needs such as dislocated workers, individuals with disabilities, and veterans — improve their chances to obtain better paying jobs, to keep those jobs and to advance their careers.

DOL also educates workers about jobs with promising career paths and helps employers access the services of the State and local workforce investment system. To complement these services, the Foreign Labor Certification program assists employers whose needs cannot be supplied by U.S. workers.

In today's economy, the well-being of American workers is increasingly tied to international stability, which is, in part, a function of broad-based economic prosperity. DOL-supported international technical assistance projects focus on raising living standards through workplace-related interventions, supporting the expansion of free and fair trade, eliminating exploitive child labor, and promoting the basic rights of workers.

Here are a few highlights of FY 2009 performance:

For Workers22

  • Entered employment rates rose for Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) participants but fell for those served by the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) Adult and Dislocated Worker programs, the Employment Service, and the Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP).
  • Retention in employment fell for participants in all five of the aforementioned programs — largely due to the economic recession.
  • Participants' average earnings fared much better. Increases were reported for WIA Adult, WIA Dislocated Worker, and SCSEP. Results for Employment Service and TAA participants dropped slightly from FY 2008.

For Employers

  • 100 percent of H-1B foreign labor certification applications (highly skilled professionals or specialty workers) were processed within the statutory, seven-day time frame.

For the International Community

  • DOL-supported projects withdrew or prevented 144,890 children from exploitive labor by providing education and/or training opportunities.
  • Through technical support and outreach from DOL-funded projects, 36 countries increased their capacity to eliminate the worst forms of child labor.

For more information, please see the Performance Goal narratives.

Five of the eight performance goals in Strategic Goal 2 are for employment and training programs. The charts below indicate these programs' historical results for entered employment rate (percent of participants who obtain jobs subsequent to receipt of services) and employment retention rate (percent of those who obtained jobs who are still employed six months later) — two of three Federal job training program common measures.23 Significant differences in results between programs are generally explained by differences in types of services offered and populations served.

Entry to Employment

Text only

Retention in Employment

Text only

 

The following table provides net costs for all performance goals and indicators associated with this strategic goal.24 Those with labels that begin with "08" operate on a Program Year (PY) basis; they report on the period from July 1, 2008 to June 30, 2009 due to the forward-funding authorized in the Workforce Investment Act of 1998 (WIA).

Goal or Indicator

Net Costs ($Millions)25

FY 2007
PY 2006

FY 2008
PY 2007

FY 2009
PY 2008

Strategic Goal 2: A Competitive Workforce

$5,060

$4,829

$4,725

Performance Goal 08-2A (WIA Adult)
Increase the employment, retention, and earnings of individuals registered under the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) Adult program.

896

844

878

Percent of participants employed in the first quarter after exit

896

844

878

Percent of those employed in the first quarter after exit still employed in the second and third quarters after exit

Average earnings in the second and third quarters after exit

Performance Goal 08-2B (WIA Dislocated Worker)
Increase the employment, retention, and earnings replacement of individuals registered under the WIA Dislocated Worker program.

1,409

1,307

1,440

Percent of participants employed in the first quarter after exit

1,409

1,307

1,440

Percent of those employed in the first quarter after program exit still employed in the second and third quarters after exit

Average earnings in the second and third quarters after exit

Performance Goal 08-2C (One-Stop Employment and Workforce Information Services)
Improve outcomes for job seekers and employers who receive One-Stop employment and workforce information services.

749

732

699

Percent of participants employed in the first quarter after exit

749

732

699

Percent of those employed in the first quarter after exit still employed in the second and third quarters after exit

Average earnings in the second and third quarters after exit

Performance Goal 08-2D (Senior Community Service Employment Program)
Assist older workers to participate in growth industries through the Senior Community Service Employment Program.

444

479

543

Percent of participants employed in the first quarter after exit

444

479

543

Percent of participants employed in the first quarter after exit still employed in the second and third quarters after exit

Average earnings in the second and third quarters after exit

Performance Goal 09-2E (Trade Adjustment Assistance)
Assist workers impacted by international trade to better compete in the global economy through the Trade Adjustment Assistance Program.

805

755

481

Percent of participants employed in the first quarter after exit

805

755

481

Percent of participants employed in first quarter after exit still employed in the second and third quarters after exit

Average earnings in the second and third quarters after exit

Performance Goal 09-2F (Foreign Labor Certification)
Address worker shortages through the Foreign Labor Certification Program.

63

40

54

Percent of H-1B applications processed within seven days of the filing date for which no prevailing wage issues are identified

Percent of employer applications for permanent labor certification under the streamlined system that are resolved within six months of filing

Percent of accepted H-2A applications with no pending State actions processed within 15 days of receipt and 30 days from the date of need

Percent of H-2B applications processed within 60 days of receipt

Dollars not associated with indicators

63

40

54

Performance Goal 09-2G (ODEP)
Build knowledge and advance disability employment policy that affects and promotes systems change.

34

27

29

Number of policy-related documents

34

27

29

Number of formal agreements

Number of effective practices

Performance Goal 09-2H (ILAB)
Contribute to the elimination of the worst forms of child labor internationally.

101

79

69

Number of children prevented or withdrawn from child labor and provided education and/or training opportunities as a result of DOL-funded child labor elimination projects

101

79

69

Number of countries with increased capacities to address child labor as a result of DOL-funded child labor elimination projects

Other (Indian and Native American Adult Programs, National Farmworker Jobs Program, Work Incentive Grants, Transition Assistance Program, Pilots, Demonstrations, Research & Evaluations, Community-Based Job Training Grants, H-1B Technical Skills Training, National Electronic Tools and other ILAB programs)

560

566

531

Performance Goal 08-2A (ETA)

Increase the employment, retention, and earnings of individuals registered under the Workforce Investment Act Adult Program.

Indicators, Targets and Results

*Indicator target reached (Y), improved (I), or not reached (N)
**Estimated

PY 2003
Goal Achieved

PY 2004
Goal Achieved

PY 2005
Goal Achieved

PY 2006
Goal Not Achieved

PY 2007
Goal Not Achieved

PY 2008
Goal Achieved

Percent of participants employed in the first quarter after exit

Target

71%

75%

76%

76%

71%

66.2%

Result

74%

77%

77%

70%

70%

68.1%**

*

Y

Y

Y

N

N

Y

Percent of participants employed in the first quarter after exit still employed in the second and third quarters after exit

Target

82%

85%

81%

82%

83%

81.7%

Result

85%

86%

82%

82%

84%

83.3%**

*

Y

Y

Y

Y

Y

Y

Average earnings in the second and third quarters after exit (six months' earnings)

Target

$11,000

$12,045

$12,862

Result

$11,870

$13,575

$14,695**

*

Y

Y

Y

Goal Net Cost (millions)

$906

$912

$896

$844

$878

Source(s): Annual State WIA performance reports (ETA-9091) and quarterly reports (ETA-9090).

Legacy Data: Some indicators not shown for PY 2003-05. Complete indicators, targets and results for PY 2003-05 are available in the FY 2006 report at http://www.dol.gov/_sec/media/reports/annual2006/PGD.htm. See Performance Goal 05-4.1A.
Note: Net Cost reflects the full cost of each program as assigned by DOL entities to the Department's outcome goals less any exchange revenue earned. Full cost consists of (a) both direct and indirect costs, and (b) the costs of identifiable supporting services provided by other segments within DOL and by other Federal agencies. Costs are not allocated to the indicator level for employment, retention and earnings measures because program activities are not separable into categories associated with one or another.

Program Perspective and Logic

The WIA Adult Program provides adult workers (unemployed and employed) with the high quality services intended to lead to good jobs. Funds are distributed by formula to States, which operate networks of One-Stop Career Centers that provide comprehensive services to workers and employers. Services may include assessments of skills needs, individual career planning, occupational skills training, on-the-job training, skills upgrading, entrepreneurial training, and adult basic education and literacy activities. States also use the WIA Adult Program to leverage additional Federal and non-Federal resources to increase the quality and variety of assistance. In PY 2009, the program is focusing on expanding workforce development areas that hold promise — such as career pathways that more fully integrate basic skills and technical/occupational education.

DOL measures the success of this program with the Federal job training program common measures. The common measures enable comparisons to be made to government-wide education, employment and job training programs that share similar core purposes. The common measures are entered employment, employment retention, and average earnings. A high entered employment rate indicates success in placing individuals in jobs. A high retention rate indicates employment stability. Increased average earnings indicate that participants are getting better jobs at higher wages.


Due to chronic illness, Blake dropped out of high school just two weeks before graduation. He was working part-time at a pizza parlor for $5.50 an hour when he sought assistance from the Watertown Career Learning Center (CLC) in obtaining his General Equivalency Diploma (GED). Blake didn’t just pass the GED examination – he received the highest score in South Dakota! CLC staff referred Blake to the South Dakota Department of Labor, where he received assistance identifying career aptitude, interests and goals, and determined that the Engineering/Drafting program at Lake Area Technical Institute offered a promising curriculum. Blake did not let his illness keep him from completing his assignments; he graduated with a 3.96 grade point average. Just 10 days after graduation, Blake began a new career as a drafter. With assistance made possible by WIA funding, Blake applied his determination and hard work to climb from a low-skilled job with no career path to a technical job with opportunities for upward mobility.

[Photo credit: DOL/ETA]

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Recovery Act

Since workers may need to upgrade skills or attain alternative skills to compete for limited career opportunities, training is a particularly vital service during the economic recovery. Consequently, overall training enrollments are expected to increase. The Recovery Act made an additional $500 million available for the WIA Adult program to provide the necessary services to substantially increased numbers of adults seeking entry or reentry into the job market. The Department is working with the States to promote integration of participant assessments and data-driven career counseling into their service strategies — so that adults are enrolled in successful training and job search activities that align with areas of anticipated economic and job growth. Recovery Act funds can be used on all activities specified under the WIA Adult Program. To leverage these funds, DOL is encouraging One-Stop Career Centers to help eligible customers take advantage of the significant increase in Pell Grant funds also included in the Recovery Act. For more information, see http://www.recovery.gov/?q=content/program-plan&program_id=7627.

Analysis and Future Plans

The performance goal for the WIA Adult Program was achieved. The program reached all three of its performance indicator targets. The entered employment result of 68.1 percent was 1.9 percentage points above the target. Retention increased to 83.3 percent, 1.6 percentage points above the target. The six-month average earnings — $14,695 — exceeded the target by $1,833.

Entered Employment Rate (EER), Employment Retention Rate (ERR), and Net Cost - WIA Adult

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Costs associated with this performance goal rose four percent from PY 2007 to PY 2008, reflecting fluctuations in the timing of expenditures and the number of participants served.

In PY 2009, DOL will focus on assisting participants with entry to career pathways that lead to middle-class jobs and strengthening strategic partnerships with businesses and the education community. Workforce solutions will be developed within the context of state and regional economies. DOL will continue to target placement of workers in high-demand sectors and occupations, and to emphasize occupational training and adult education — especially in green and health care occupations.

Indicator

*

What worked

What didn't work

Entered employment rate

Y

  • Increased resources and staff capacity provided by Recovery Act funding enabled more individuals to receive intensive and training services. While the rate has dipped below 70 percent, the number of individuals entering employment grew in PY 2008.
  • Analysis of the impacts of unemployment rates on workforce outcomes provided a basis for targets based on economic conditions.

 

Employment retention rate

Y

  • Worker re-training, layoff aversion efforts, and follow-up services have helped many individuals retain employment despite the challenging job market. Results show that individuals who are placed in employment appear to have a strong likelihood of keeping their jobs.

 

Average earnings

Y

  • Increases over the last three years indicate that participants are accessing quality jobs.
  • While DOL has emphasized placing individuals in high demand occupations, it must increase efforts to place them in emerging fields such as renewable energy.

Program Performance Improvement Plan

  • Collaborate with the Department of Education to help leverage Adult Basic Education (ABE) and post-secondary education programs delivered through community colleges and other community organizations that provide such services. The workforce system will also help direct individuals to other available training funds, such as Federal Pell grants. These need-based grants to low-income undergraduate and certain post-baccalaureate students promote access to postsecondary education and can be a critical resource to help individuals attain the educational foundation necessary to secure future employment.
  • Leverage workforce development strategies such as career pathway approaches that more fully integrate basic skills (including English proficiency) and technical/occupational education to help individuals secure the skills necessary to escape poverty and succeed in emerging middle-class jobs.
  • Training services may also include: new contextual learning models that address learning deficiencies while providing occupational skills training and credential attainment; earn and learn strategies such as transitional jobs and on-the-job training; and bridge models that help workers connect to post-secondary education to achieve industry-recognized and transferable credentials and/or degrees. In addition, a host of supportive services including needs-related payments will be offered to make WIA Adult training more family-friendly.


*Target reached (Y), improved (I), or not reached (N)

In 2010, WIA Adult Program's activities will contribute to the following outcome goals in support of the Department's Strategic Vision of Good Jobs for Everyone:

  • Increasing workers' incomes and narrowing wage and income inequality; and
  • Helping workers who are in low-wage jobs or out of the labor market find a path into middle-class jobs.

Program Assessments, Evaluations and Audits

Findings and recommendations from an assessment of the WIA Adult Program completed in 2005 prompted specific actions to improve performance. Here is a summary of progress in FY 2009:

  • Conducting an evaluation to determine WIA services' impact on employment and earnings outcomes for participants. An evaluation of the WIA programs using administrative data was completed in December 2008. A summary of the findings, recommendations, and actions is provided below. ETA also convened a Peer Review Board of independent researchers and stakeholders to review and provide comments on the design of the Workforce Investment Act Gold Standard Evaluation (WGSE). The review provided useful input on the contractor's evaluation design. ETA is continuing to refine the design and hopes to begin implementation of the evaluation in FY 2010. Additionally, in FY 2010, the Department is funding a study that will examine and compare existing participant outcome data by services (core, intensive, and training) provided through reports from the WIA Adult and Dislocated Worker programs, Wagner-Peyser Act Employment Service grants to states, and the Trade Adjustment Assistance program.
  • Adopting efficiency measures that are linked to performance outcomes, account for all costs, and facilitate comparisons across Department of Labor training and employment programs. An independent study completed in PY 2008 recommended outcome-based efficiency measures for which the Department is collecting baseline data. These data will inform the selection of appropriate measures for each program. Additional research on setting performance standards and targets will be completed by December 2009.
  • Improving reporting efficiency, program management and accountability through the collection of new information with WISPR, a common reporting system for WIA, Trade Adjustment Assistance, and Wagner-Peyser Act Programs. The Workforce Investment Streamlined Performance Reporting (WISPR) system was designed to streamline performance reporting. ETA remains committed to improving reporting efficiency and accountability; however, the agency will be reassessing its performance reporting approach in light of the impending reauthorization of WIA.

More information is available at http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/expectmore/summary/10003900.2005.html.

Independent evaluations and audits completed in FY 2009 are summarized below.

"Workforce Investment Act Non-Experimental Net Impact Evaluation," March 2009 (IMPAQ International, LLC)

Relevance: This evaluation compares entered employment and average earnings outcomes of individuals in the Adult and Dislocated Worker programs to those of a non-participant comparison group.

Findings and Recommendations:

  • This evaluation showed that the WIA Adult program helped participants (regardless of services received), on average, increase their quarterly earnings by several hundred dollars.
  • Adult Program participants who obtain training services have lower initial earnings than those who do not receive training services. However, they catch up within 10 quarters, ultimately registering larger total earnings gains per quarter.
  • The marginal benefits of training may exceed $400 in earnings each quarter for the average WIA Adult Program participant.

Actions:

  • The report has been shared with stakeholders through the Department's Website.
  • The results of the report were shared with workforce system practitioners and the workforce research community at the Recovery and Reemployment Research Conference on September 15-16, 2009.

Additional Information: The report is available at http://wdr.doleta.gov/research/.



Data Quality and Top Management Challenges

Data quality for this performance goal is rated Very Good.26 Refer to the Data Quality and Top Management Challenges section in Performance Goal 1C, which shares the same data collection system, for a discussion of improvement efforts.

Refer to the Data Quality and Top Management Challenges section in Performance Goal 1C for a discussion of the Department's efforts to address Recovery Act implementation challenges.

Performance Goal 08-2B (ETA)

Increase the employment, retention, and earnings of individuals registered under the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) Dislocated Worker Program.

Indicators, Targets and Results

*Indicator target reached (Y), improved (I), or not reached (N)
**Estimated

PY 2003
Goal Not Achieved

PY 2004
Goal Not Achieved

PY 2005
Goal Not Achieved

PY 2006
Goal Not Achieved

PY 2007
Goal Not Achieved

PY 2008
Goal Not Achieved

Percent of participants employed in the first quarter after exit

Target

78%

82%

83%

84%

79%

71.0%

Result

82%

84%

83%

78%

73%

67.7%**

*

Y

Y

Y

N

N

N

Percent of participants employed in the first quarter after exit still employed in the second and third quarters after exit

Target

88%

91%

89%

90%

89%

84.7%

Result

90%

91%

88%

88%

87%

85.9%**

*

Y

Y

N

N

N

Y

Average earnings in the second and third quarters after exit (six months' earnings)

Target

$13,800

$14,410

$14,888

Result

$14,265

$15,188

$16,304**

*

Y

Y

Y

Goal Net Cost (millions)

$1,472

$1,543

$1,409

$1,307

$1,441


Source(s):
Annual State WIA performance reports (ETA-9091) and quarterly reports (ETA-9090).
Legacy Data: Some indicators not shown for PY 2003-05. Complete indicators, targets and results for PY 2003-05 are available in the FY 2006 report at http://www.dol.gov/_sec/media/reports/annual2006/PGD.htm. See Performance Goal 05-4.1C.
Note: Net Cost reflects the full cost of each program as assigned by DOL entities to the Department's outcome goals less any exchange revenue earned. Full cost consists of (a) both direct and indirect costs, and (b) the costs of identifiable supporting services provided by other segments within DOL and by other Federal agencies. Costs are not allocated to the indicator level for employment, retention and earnings measures because program activities are not separable into categories associated with one or another.

Program Perspective and Logic

The Dislocated Worker Program offers employment and training services to individuals who have lost their jobs due to plant closings or mass layoffs. These workers are unlikely to return to employment in their previous industries and may include formerly self-employed individuals, and displaced homemakers dependent on the income that is no longer available from another family member. Eighty percent of funds are allocated by formula to the states. The Secretary of Labor may use the remaining 20 percent for discretionary activities, as specified under WIA, such as assistance (through the National Emergency Grants) to localities that experience plant closures, natural disasters, military base realignment and other major economic events that result in mass layoff of workers and job losses.

This program has assumed a critical role in developing locally and regionally-driven reemployment and training solutions at a time when mass layoffs are common. It offers a menu of services that include: job search assistance; career counseling; occupational skills training; on-the-job training; programs that combine workplace training and related instruction, including registered apprenticeship; skill upgrading and retraining; entrepreneurship training; job readiness training; adult education and literacy training; and customized training. All services seek to reemploy participants in high growth sectors offering the best opportunity for long-term job stability.

This program uses the Federal job training program common measures, which enable comparisons to be made to education, employment and job training programs that share similar core purposes. The Entered Employment Rate measures the success of participants in finding jobs, the Retention Rate demonstrates if a participant has employment stability, and the Average Earnings measure reflects job quality.


Milton was laid off in 2006 after 20 years as a computer programmer for a large Illinois insurance company. For the next year, he worked periodically as a consultant and day trader but felt pressure to find a stable position with benefits, particularly after his wife received notice that her company was planning layoffs. Milton had a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science, but since it was awarded in 1985, he believed he needed to update his skills in emerging programming and information technology methods. Through the Workforce Investment Act Dislocated Worker program, the Lake County Workforce Development Board provided Milton with training in Project Management and Computer Information Systems. After his training, he registered with Illinois Skills Match (job matching system) and was notified about a Computer Technology Specialist position with the local county government (Nineteenth Judicial Circuit). He was hired full-time for that position in March 2008. Milton thinks his new training made him stand out in the interview. He likes his new job because it is challenging and affords opportunities to apply his new skills.

[Photo credit: DOL/ETA]

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Recovery Act

Workforce Investment Act Dislocated Worker. The Recovery Act made an additional $1.25 billion available to the WIA Dislocated Worker program for expanding services, as authorized by WIA, and using the same funding allocation formula. The Recovery Act calls for greater quantity and quality training services; States are expected to improve assessments and career counseling to place workers in high growth sectors with long term opportunities. States have the authority to enter into contracts with institutions of higher education, such as community colleges, or other eligible training providers to facilitate training multiple individuals for high-demand occupations as long as the contract does not limit customer choice. For more information, see http://www.recovery.gov/?q=content/program-plan&program_id=7556.

Dislocated Worker National Emergency Grants. The Recovery Act provides an additional $200 million for National Emergency Grants to aid in the recovery and reemployment of dislocated workers. DOL authorized two new types of NEGs that provide States and local areas with additional flexibility to use funds in a manner that is appropriate to their specific economic situation and labor markets. For more information, see http://www.recovery.gov/?q=content/program-plan&program_id=7568.

National Emergency Grants for Health Coverage Assistance. The Recovery Act also appropriated $150 million for NEGs to States funding 80 percent of the cost of qualifying health insurance coverage for workers who are certified for the Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) program. These funds provide temporary coverage until participants can be enrolled in the Health Coverage Tax Credit program. For more information, see http://www.recovery.gov/?q=content/program-plan&program_id=7568.

Analysis and Future Plans

The performance goal was not achieved. The entered employment rate was 3.3 percentage points below target, while the employment retention rate was 1.2 percentage points above target. Six-month average earnings increased from the PY 2007 level and the result was well above the target.

Entered Employment Rate (EER), Employment Retention Rate (ERR), and Net Cost - WIA Dislocated Worker

Text only


Costs associated with this performance goal increased by ten percent from PY 2007 to PY 2008. Expenditures increased commensurate with the demand for Dislocated Worker services due to rising unemployment and the increase in corporate layoffs nationwide. Access to Recovery Act funding allowed for these additional investments.

Training and other services funded by the Recovery Act advance employment opportunities for laid-off workers. DOL encourages States and local service providers to coordinate services to dislocated workers and to focus on education and skills training for high growth occupations. New projects include assistance to unemployed workers in starting small businesses, raising workers' education and skill levels, and occupational training.

Indicator

*

What worked

What didn't work

Entered employment rate

N

  • The Recovery Act has provided increased resources and staff capacity to One-Stop Career Centers. More individuals are now able to receive intensive and training services which tend to yield better outcomes than basic self-services. While the rate has remained below 70 percent, more individuals have entered employment.
  • Labor marker economic conditions reduced the number of job options available to program participants.

Employment retention rate

Y

  • Worker re-training in the midst of substantial layoffs nationwide appears to have helped many individuals gain employment and, subsequently, retain employment. More individuals are receiving intensive and training services compared to previous years. And although the rate has dropped, retention remains at high levels.

 

Average earnings

Y

  • Wage increases suggest that individuals who left the program accessed higher quality jobs.
  • While DOL has emphasized placing individuals in high demand occupations, it must increase efforts to place them in emerging fields such as renewable energy.

Program Performance Improvement Plan

  • Continue to implement a more proactive model of pre- and post-layoff services to impacted workers. Comprehensive skills assessments, improved workforce information and career guidance, and improved access to post-secondary education will all be incorporated. The goal of this model is to provide opportunities for individuals to acquire the skills and knowledge needed to become employable in middle-class jobs and enable regions to respond proactively to economic events and changing workforce development needs.
  • Encourage States to assess the skills, abilities, and career goals of all eligible dislocated workers. This assessment should help the workforce system better map the skills of dislocated workers against current and anticipated high growth sectors, including green industry sectors. This approach will be particularly important as local industries reposition for growth in the aftermath of permanent layoffs and plant closures.


*Target reached (Y), improved (I), or not reached (N)

In 2010, WIA Dislocated Worker Program's activities will contribute to the following outcome goals in support of the Department's Strategic Vision of Good Jobs for Everyone:

  • Increasing workers' incomes and narrowing wage and income inequality;
  • Helping workers who are in low-wage jobs or out of the labor market find a path into middle-class jobs; and
  • Helping middle-class families remain in the middle-class.

Program Assessments, Evaluations and Audits

Findings and recommendations from a Workforce Investment Act Dislocated Worker Assistance assessment completed in 2003 prompted specific actions to improve performance. Here is a summary of progress in FY 2009:

  • Conducting an evaluation to determine WIA services' impact on employment and earnings outcomes for participants. An evaluation of the WIA programs using administrative data was completed in December 2008. A summary of the findings, recommendations, and actions is provided in the WIA Adult goal narrative. ETA also convened a Peer Review Board of independent researchers and stakeholders to review and provide comments on the design of the Workforce Investment Act Gold Standard Evaluation (WGSE). The review provided useful input on the contractor's evaluation design. ETA is continuing to refine the design and hopes to begin implementation of the evaluation in FY 2010. Additionally, in FY 2010, the Department is funding a study that will examine and compare existing participant outcome data for different services (core, intensive, and training) provided by the WIA Adult and Dislocated Worker programs, the Wagner-Peyser Act Employment Service, and the Trade Adjustment Assistance program.
  • Adopting efficiency measures that are linked to performance outcomes, account for all costs, and facilitate comparisons across Department of Labor training and employment programs. An independent study completed in PY 2008 recommended outcome-based efficiency measures for which the Department is collecting baseline data. These data will inform the selection of appropriate measures for each program. Additional research on setting performance standards and targets will be completed by December 2009.
  • Improving reporting efficiency, program management and accountability through the collection of new information with WISPR, a common reporting system for WIA, Trade Adjustment Assistance, and Wagner-Peyser Act Programs. The Workforce Investment Streamlined Performance Reporting (WISPR) system, designed to streamline performance reporting for the WIA Title I programs, Wagner-Peyser Act funded services, and the Trade Adjustment Assistance program, was scheduled for implementation on July 1, 2009. However, WISPR was not implemented. ETA will be reassessing its performance reporting approach in light of the impending reauthorization of WIA.

More information is available at http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/expectmore/summary/10000330.2003.html.

In 2007, the Dislocated Worker National Emergency Grants program was assessed. FY 2009 progress on the resulting improvement plan is summarized below.

  • Developing a formalized prioritization system to process the most important grants more quickly. ETA has drafted a standard operating procedure (SOP) for processing NEG applications reflecting a policy of first-in, first-out, with the exception of disaster NEGs, which are given priority. The next draft will incorporate disaster NEG priority and add a process flow diagram.
  • Initiating an evaluation of sufficient scope and quality to evaluate overall program effectiveness. Funding to support an independent evaluation was not available in PY 2007 and PY 2008, as a result of limited discretionary resources for the Agency as a whole. The Department will continue to explore the possibility of funding an evaluation.
  • Adopting efficiency measures that are linked to performance outcomes, account for all costs, and facilitate comparisons across Department of Labor training and employment programs. See the identical item for the 2003 assessment of the Dislocated Worker program above.

More information is available at http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/expectmore/summary/10009003.2007.html.

Independent evaluations and audits completed in FY 2009 are summarized below.

"Workforce Investment Act Non-Experimental Net Impact Evaluation," March 2009 (IMPAQ International, LLC)

Relevance: This evaluation compares entered employment and average earnings outcomes of individuals in the Adult and Dislocated Worker programs to those of a non-participant comparison group.

Findings and Recommendations:

  • The evaluation showed that dislocated workers are likely to face serious difficulties in obtaining reemployment, and the kind of services WIA offers may require time to produce impacts.
  • The estimates imply that program participants' earnings do not reach the level of earnings of comparable non-participants until more than two years after participation. Overall, it appears possible that ultimate gains from participation are small or nonexistent. Insofar as there are impacts, females are more likely to benefit than are males.
  • When evaluating employment, estimates of WIA Dislocated Worker program impacts are more supportive.

Actions:

  • The report has been shared with stakeholders through the Department's Website.
  • The results of the report were shared with workforce system practitioners and the workforce research community at the Recovery and Reemployment Research Conference on September 15-16, 2009.

Additional Information: The report is available at http://wdr.doleta.gov/research/.


Data Quality and Top Management Challenges

Data quality for this performance goal is rated Very Good.28 Refer to the Data Quality and Top Management Challenges section in Performance Goal 1C, which shares the same data collection system, for a discussion of improvement efforts.

Refer to the Data Quality and Top Management Challenges section in Performance Goal 1C for a discussion of the Department’s efforts to address Recovery Act implementation challenges.

Performance Goal 08-2C (ETA)

Improve outcomes for job seekers who receive Employment Services through the One-Stop Career Centers and virtual workforce resources.

Indicators, Targets and Results

*Indicator target reached (Y), improved (I), or not reached (N)
**Estimated

PY 2003
Goal Achieved

PY 2004
Goal Not Achieved

PY 2005
Goal Achieved

PY 2006
Goal Not Achieved

PY 2007
Goal Achieved

PY 2008
Goal Not Achieved

Percent of participants employed in the first quarter after exit

Target

58%

58%

61%

64%

61%

60.3%

Result

61%

64%

63%

60%

64%

59.8%**

*

Y

Y

Y

N

Y

N

Percent of participants employed in the first quarter after exit still employed in the second and third quarters after exit

Target

72%

72%

78%

81%

78%

78.6%

Result

80%

81%

80%

77%

81%

79.7%**

*

Y

Y

Y

N

Y

Y

Average earnings in the second and third quarters after exit (six months' earnings)

Target

$10,500

$11,870

$10,708

Result

$11,576

$12,763

$11,074**

*

Y

Y

Y

Goal Net Cost (millions)

$831

$884

$749

$732

$699


Source(s):
Quarterly Labor Exchange Reporting System reports included in the Enterprise Business Support System and Unemployment Insurance records.
Legacy Data: Some indicators not shown for PY 2003-06. Complete indicators, targets and results for PY 2003-06 are available in the FY 2007 report at http://www.dol.gov/_sec/media/reports/annual2007/SG2.htm. See Performance Goal 06-2C.
Note: Net Cost reflects the full cost of each program as assigned by DOL entities to the Department's outcome goals less any exchange revenue earned. Full cost consists of (a) both direct and indirect costs, and (b) the costs of identifiable supporting services provided by other segments within DOL and by other Federal agencies. Costs are not allocated to the indicator level for employment, retention and earnings measures because program activities are not separable into categories associated with one or another.

Program Perspective and Logic

A fundamental underpinning of the nation's One-Stop Career Centers is the Employment Service's delivery of core employment and workforce information services to businesses and job seekers. Principally funded through the Wagner-Peyser Act, as amended by the Workforce Investment Act of 1998, these services are designed to help both employed and unemployed workers obtain jobs in high-demand occupations. The Employment Service does not provide training; it provides universal access to workforce and labor market information, job search assistance, job matching and referrals, and career guidance. These services are provided in collaboration with a wide array of workforce investment partner programs that provide training, child care, transportation, and customized services to clients with unique needs such as unemployment insurance claimants, veterans, and migrant and seasonal farm workers. In the year ending June 30, 2009, the Employment Service assisted 18 million participants, approximately two million more than the previous year.

The Department strongly encourages States and local areas to provide job seekers with comprehensive workforce and labor market information and career guidance that will help them make informed employment, education and training decisions that consider growth opportunities in addition to immediate needs. These services support the Department's goal of assisting workers in low-wage jobs and those who may be out of the labor market find a path to middle class jobs. One-Stop Career Center services also facilitate employment connections that enable middle class workers to remain in high-quality jobs matching their skill level.

The Department uses the common measures for Federal employment and job training programs to evaluate the effectiveness of its core employment and workforce information services. Common measures, including the entered employment rate, the employment retention rate and average earnings, enable comparisons to be made for employment and job training programs that share similar purposes. Collectively, these measures help gauge the workforce system's ability to match individuals who are seeking employment with employers who need their skills.


Mark, a retired U.S. Navy veteran, was seeking an education and career pathway that would lead to financial security. After graduating from the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology with a Bachelor’s Degree in December 2008, he utilized the One Stop to better understand career options and to enhance his job placement opportunities. Staff members were so impressed with his computer and technical skills that they offered him a part-time position. Based on his performance in that job, Mark was hired by the South Dakota Department of Labor for a full-time position on the Veterans’ Employment Team in April 2009. Way to go, Mark!

[Photo credit: South Dakota Department of Labor]

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Recovery Act

The Recovery Act made an additional $150 million available for Employment Service Operations, plus $250 million for targeted reemployment services to unemployment insurance claimants. States are using these funds to provide more people access, through the network of One-Stop Career Centers, to employment and workforce information, and to provide a greater variety of core and intensive services. The Recovery Act also supports information technology enhancements that allow for better communication between Unemployment Insurance (UI) claimants and One-Stop Career Centers. One promising technology allows UI staff to better match a claimant's skill set to related job openings. Other enhancements may improve State job banks, and provide more robust workforce information that informs customers about industry-specific market conditions and occupations in high-growth industries, as well as green jobs. For more information, see http://www.recovery.gov/?q=content/program-plan&program_id=7681.

Entered Employment Rate (EER), Employment Retention Rate (ERR), and Net Cost - One-stop Services

Text only

Analysis and Future Plans

The performance goal was not achieved. Targets for employment retention and average earnings were reached with results 1.1 percentage points and $366 above their respective targets. The entered employment rate result was only 0.5 percentage points below the target.

To encourage effective workforce system responses to the current economic challenges, DOL held several regional reemployment conferences for the workforce investment community during the summer of 2009. The conferences help the Employment Service implement strategies intended to enhance program performance by, for example, improving the reemployment function, customer understanding and use of local labor market information, and assessments of customers' knowledge or technical skills gaps. Job retention rates and overall employment stability should increase as the economy recovers and as additional permanent jobs are created.

Costs associated with this performance goal decreased by four percent from PY 2007 to PY 2008. The decrease in expenditures reflects the fluctuation of normal spending and participants served from year to year.

Indicator

*

What worked

What didn't work

Entered employment rate

N

  • Labor market information improvements continued to be critical to helping maintain entered employment outcomes despite the recession and lack of job openings. Jobseekers found employment at somewhat similar rates over the past five years.
  • Increased layoffs and general employment instability accounted for part of the decline.

Employment retention rate

Y

  • The result exceeded the PY 2008 target by a little over one percentage point. ETA considers this to be a positive result given the current economic climate.

 

Average earnings

Y

  • Participants who received labor market information on jobs in demand likely increased their knowledge about quality, middle-class jobs. Despite the current economic slowdown, participants' six months' average earnings exceeded the target by almost $400.
  • While DOL has emphasized placing individuals in high demand occupations, it must increase efforts to place them in green jobs funded by the Recovery Act.

Program Performance Improvement Plan

  • Support jobseekers connecting to middle class jobs. The Department has proposed targeted technical assistance for pathways out of poverty. This technical assistance will be aimed at One-Stop Career Center staff and provide them the tools to help them move more at-risk, low-income customers into higher quality job opportunities.
  • Help job seekers understand the local labor market — which jobs are in demand and which jobs are emerging due to new infrastructure spending such as green jobs.
  • Continue to offer job search assistance such as resume writing and interviewing skill development and assessments and testing to identify skill matches and gaps.
  • Provide employers labor market information, One-Stop resources such as job fairs and interviewing space, workforce professionals to help recruit and screen qualified workers, and services for workers being displaced when an employer is faced with downsizing or closure of their business.


*Target reached (Y), improved (I), or not reached (N)

In 2010, Employment Service system's activities will contribute to the following outcome goals in support of the Department's Strategic Vision of Good Jobs for Everyone:

  • Increasing workers' incomes and narrowing wage and income inequality; and
  • Helping workers who are in low-wage jobs or out of the labor market find a path into middle-class jobs.

Program Assessments, Evaluations and Audits

Findings and recommendations from an Employment Service assessment completed in 2004 prompted specific actions to improve performance. Here is a summary of progress in FY 2009:

  • Tracking the levels of self-service participants versus staff assisted participants to improve workforce system integration. DOL provided technical assistance to States on Wagner Peyser Act reporting and included self-service reporting among topics for quarterly meetings with stakeholders. Also, Recovery Act performance reporting for Reemployment Services includes detailed data by service type (self-service or staff-assisted).
  • Improving reporting efficiency, program management and accountability through the collection of new information with WISPR, an integrated, streamlined reporting system for WIA, Trade Adjustment Assistance, and Wagner-Peyser Act and Jobs for Veterans Act state grants. The Workforce Investment Streamlined Performance Reporting (WISPR) system, designed to streamline performance reporting for the WIA Title I programs, Wagner-Peyser Act funded services, and the Trade Adjustment Assistance program, was scheduled for implementation on July 1, 2009. However, WISPR was not implemented. ETA will be reassessing its performance reporting approach in light of the impending reauthorization of WIA.
  • Implementing efficiency measures that are linked to performance outcomes, account for all costs, and facilitate comparisons across Department of Labor training and employment programs. An independent study completed in PY 2008 recommended outcome-based efficiency measures for which the Department is collecting baseline data. These data will inform the selection of appropriate measures for each program. Additional research on setting performance standards and targets will be completed by December 2009.

More information is available at http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/expectmore/summary/10002376.2004.html.

"Evaluation of Labor Exchange Services in a One-Stop Delivery System Environment," December 2008 (WESTAT)

Relevance: This study of the computerized job-matching system and management styles employed at One-Stop Career Centers offers steps that can be taken to improve the quality of services and data.

Findings and Recommendations:

  • Public labor exchanges provide valuable job-matching services by referring job seekers to job openings.
  • High-quality services and integration were found in States with and without traditional funding silos.
  • Effective One-Stop integration was achieved by authorizing one manager to unify operations by selecting staff from different agencies to coordinate services as a team, and to evaluate their performance.
  • Devolving control to local areas greatly diminished use of statewide computerized systems, and increased job development geared to the needs of WIA target groups vs. the general population of job seekers and employers.

Actions:

  • ETA has disseminated the findings to States and local areas via the DOLETA.gov Website, as most of the recommendations are applicable at the States and local levels.
  • The recommendation that ETA create a reporting system that improves the coverage and accuracy of the delivery of core services will be considered during review of the performance measures in preparation for WIA reauthorization.

Additional Information: The full report is available at http://wdr.doleta.gov/research/FullText_Documents/Evaluation of Labor Exchange in One-Stop Delivery System - Final Report.pdf.

"Evaluation of Strengthening the Connections between Unemployment Insurance and the One-Stop Delivery Systems Project in Wisconsin," January 2009 (Berkeley Policy Associates)

Relevance: Research of reemployment methods in a demonstration project yielded useful lessons and strategies to improve the coordination of services to Unemployment Insurance (UI) claimants.

Findings and Recommendations:

  • The demonstration project succeeded in increasing collaboration between the State's UI and Job Service divisions through both its data sharing component and its implementation of expanded reemployment services and eligibility reviews of UI claimants.
  • Demonstration participants drew UI benefits for a shorter period of time and had higher average quarterly earnings than did comparison group members.
  • The use of specific services such as assessments, job referrals, one-on-one services, and client follow-up improved participants' likelihood of entering employment, decreasing claims of UI benefits, and increasing quarterly earnings.

Actions:

  • ETA has disseminated the findings to State and local areas via the DOLETA.gov Web site, as most of the recommendations are applicable at the State and local levels.
  • TEGL 14-08 encourages States to "develop close partnering relationships between UI and One-Stops."
  • These recommendations will inform the Administration's WIA re-authorization guidelines.

Additional Information: http://wdr.doleta.gov/research/keyword.cfm?fuseaction=dsp_resultDetails&pub_id=2396&mp=y.


Data Quality and Top Management Challenges

Data quality for this performance goal is rated Very Good.29 While verification remains an area for improvement, extensive efforts have been directed toward improving data quality through the use of ETA's data validation system and monitoring at both the national and regional levels (see the Top Management Challenges in the Other Accompanying Information section). The validation initiative for the Employment Service is based on a sample approach that provides the most logical, administratively feasible, and cost effective means of validation due to the large number of participants, roughly 18 million, who receive core services. All States completed requirements for data element validation and submitted summaries and analytical reports to ETA. Those files that were randomly selected as part of the sample were reviewed to ensure that the data collected were complete, accurate and verifiable. Refer to the Data Quality and Top Management Challenges section in Performance Goal 1C for a discussion of the Department's efforts to address Recovery Act implementation challenges.

Performance Goal 08-2D (ETA)

Assist older workers to participate in growth industries through the Senior Community Service Employment Program

Indicators, Targets and Results

*Indicator target reached (Y), improved (I), or not reached (N)
**Estimated

PY 2005
Goal Not Achieved

PY 2006
Goal Not Achieved

PY 2007
Goal Sub-stantially Achieved

PY 2008
Goal Not Achieved

Percent of participants employed in the first quarter after exit

Target

55%

38%

33%

49.2%

Result

33%

32%

52%

47.9%**

*

N

N

Y

N

Percent of participants employed in the first quarter after exit still employed in the second and third quarters after exit

Target

65%

48%

67%

69.1%

Result

73%

66%

71%

70.6%**

*

Y

Y

Y

Y

Average earnings in the second and third quarters after exit (six months' earnings)

Target

baseline

baseline

$6,775

$6,360

Result

$6,704

$6,713

$6,782**

*

N

I

Y

Goal Net Cost (millions)

$432

$444

$479

$543


Source(s):
Quarterly reports from the SCSEP Performance and Results Quarterly (SPARQ) performance reporting system.
Note: Net Cost reflects the full cost of each program as assigned by DOL entities to the Department's outcome goals less any exchange revenue earned. Full cost consists of (a) both direct and indirect costs, and (b) the costs of identifiable supporting services provided by other segments within DOL and by other Federal agencies. Costs are not allocated to the indicator level for employment, retention and earnings measures because program activities are not separable into categories associated with one or another of them.


Kathy, a resident of Moundsville, WV, sought part-time employment to support her community and supplement her income. She found a program for older workers sponsored by the National Council on Aging and funded by the Senior Community Service Employment Program. Upon enrollment, she was assigned to a childcare center in Glen Dale, WV. She then discovered that she was eligible for the State Childcare Worker Certification. Training at the center afforded Kathy the opportunity to pursue licensure as part of her professional development. The center was so pleased with her work that they hired her for a full-time, unsubsidized position three months later. Kathy has proven to be an invaluable asset to the center, continues to build her resume, and “loves every minute of it!”

[Photo credit: DOL/ETA]

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Program Perspective and Logic

The aging of the baby boomer generation presents challenges and opportunities to SCSEP. This program taps unemployed, low-income older workers for community service while also promoting self-sufficiency by providing participants with part-time work-based training that may lead to placements into unsubsidized jobs. Program participants work an average of 20 hours a week at non-profit and public facilities such as day-care centers, senior centers, schools and hospitals, and are paid the highest of Federal, State or local minimum wage, or the prevailing wage. These community service experiences can serve as a bridge to employment positions that are not supported with Federal funds. SCSEP formula grants to States and competitively awarded grants to public and private non-profit organizations fund positions for about 90,000 low-income workers age 55 and older. Grantees coordinate activities in partnership with nearly 3,000 comprehensive and affiliate One-Stop Career Centers nationwide.
DOL measures SCSEP success using the Federal job training program common measures (entered employment rate, employment retention rate and average earnings) to enable comparisons with education, employment and job training programs that share similar purposes. These indicators measure participants' improved financial opportunity, stability of their new positions in unsubsidized employment, and effectiveness of training services, respectively. Targets for these measures are negotiated with each grantee based on past and projected outcomes, improvements in program design, and external economic factors.

Recovery Act

The Recovery Act provided an additional $120 million to current grantees, allocated in proportion to their regular SCSEP allotments in Program Year 2008. Grantees will have until June 30, 2010, to recruit new SCSEP participants, place them in community service employment assignments, and find jobs for as many of them as possible. For more information, see http://www.recovery.gov/?q=content/program-plan&program_id=7569.

Analysis and Future Plans

The SCSEP performance goal was not achieved. The entered employment rate fell 1.3 percentage points below the target. However, the employment retention rate and six-month average earnings were 1.5 percentage points and $422 above their targets, respectively. DOL is currently focused on ensuring that SCSEP grantees manage their Recovery Act grants adequately in order to expend all funds and provide an economic stimulus to communities where SCSEP participants reside. Further performance improvements will partially hinge on finalizing testing and gaining access to UI wage records. Preliminary test runs matching participant records to UI wage records have yielded higher results for all three measures.

Entered Employment Rate (EER), Employment Retention Rate (ERR), and Net Cost - SCSEP

Text only

Costs associated with this performance goal increased by 13 percent from PY 2007 to PY 2008. The increase was primarily due to federal and state minimum wage increases which took effect at the beginning of July 2008.

Indicator

*

What worked

What didn't work

Entered employment rate

N

Communication with, and technical assistance to, grantees has improved greatly for several reasons:

  • Improved monitoring by the regional FPOs has helped grantees to do a better job documenting their performance.
  • The Older Worker Team conducts monthly teleconferences with the SCSEP FPOs regarding grantee performance and policy issues.
  • The Team also conducts monthly all-grantee calls with an emphasis on fielding policy and performance questions from grantee representatives.
  • We have established a SPARQ Users Group of grantee representatives who serve as a source of advice to DOL staff persons and contractors maintaining and improving the SCSEP data collection system.
  • Older worker participants' entered employment rate is hindered by the continued recession and associated high levels of unemployment.
  • Improving territorial grantees' record-keeping and performance continues to be a major obstacle — even after on-site technical assistance is provided.
  • Program managers have been focused on Recovery Act grants and rapid expenditure of stimulus funds. Grantees have likewise been focused on enrolling and assisting thousands of additional participants. As a result, some resources have likely been diverted from job placement.

Employment retention rate

Y

Average earnings

Y

Program Performance Improvement Plan

  • Continue to work on reconciling SCSEP records with the Wage Record Interchange System (WRIS) and to gain access to more unemployment insurance wage records for PY 2010, to yield more accurate and complete data.
  • Continue to build on our excellent communication with grantees.
  • Develop webinars as a tool for technical assistance and outreach.


*Target reached (Y), improved (I), or not reached (N)

In 2010, SCSEP's activities will contribute to the following outcome goals in support of the Department's Strategic Vision of Good Jobs for Everyone:

  • Increasing workers' incomes and narrowing wage and income inequality;
  • Assuring skills and knowledge that prepare workers to succeed in a knowledge-based economy, including in high growth and emerging industry sectors like "green" jobs; and
  • Helping workers who are in low-wage jobs or out of the labor market find a path into middle-class jobs.

Program Assessments, Evaluations and Audits

Findings and recommendations from a Senior Community Service Employment Program assessment completed in 2003 prompted specific actions to improve performance. Here is a summary of progress in FY 2009:

  • Implementing efficiency measures that are linked to performance outcomes, account for all costs, and facilitate comparisons across Department of Labor training and employment programs. An independent study completed in PY 2008 recommended outcome-based efficiency measures for which the Department is collecting baseline data. These data will inform the selection of appropriate measures for each program. Additional research on setting performance standards and targets will be completed by December 2009.
  • Publishing a final rule to implement the 2006 Older Americans Act amendments. In 2008, DOL published the proposed rule. Publication of the final rule is expected in May 2010.

More information is at http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/expectmore/summary/10000328.2003.html.

Independent evaluations and audits completed in FY 2009 are summarized below.

"Senior Community Service Employment Program Antideficiency Act Violation," November 2008 (OIG)

Relevance:OIG found that an Antideficiency Act (ADA) violation occurred when the Department carried over SCSEP funds from one year to the two succeeding years, in violation of appropriations law restricting the use of program funds to the current fiscal year. The amount of the ADA violation was $37,446,115.

Findings and Recommendations:

  • SCSEP was using recaptured funds to pay for contractor-provided technical assistance. Legal alternatives are the 1.5 percent set-aside of formula funds authorized by the 2006 Amendments to the Older Americans Act and ETA's Program Administration account.

Actions:

  • OIG worked with ETA officials to reconcile the amounts of SCSEP funds that were recaptured, re-obligated, and expended.

Additional Information: The report (No. 25-09-001-03-360) is available at http://www.oig.dol.gov/.


Data Quality and Top Management Challenges

The data quality for this performance goal is rated Very Good.30 Grantees will be held accountable for validating reported data beginning in PY 2009. DOL has implemented edit and logic checks, a data quality report, and various management reports to ensure data submitted by the grantees into the SCSEP Performance and Results Quarterly (SPARQ) Project Report System are verifiable. Finally, the Department is pursuing access to unemployment insurance wage records to improve data accuracy and process efficiency.

Refer to the Data Quality and Top Management Challenges section in Performance Goal 1C for a discussion of the Department's efforts to address Recovery Act implementation challenges.

Performance Goal 09-2E (ETA)

Assist workers impacted by international trade to better compete in the global economy through the Trade Adjustment Assistance Program.

Indicators, Targets and Results

*Indicator target reached (Y), improved (I), or not reached (N)
**Estimated

FY 2004
Goal Not Achieved

FY 2005
Goal Not Achieved

FY 2006
Goal Achieved

FY 2007
Goal Achieved

FY 2008
Goal Not Achieved

FY 2009
Goal Achieved

Percent of participants employed in the first quarter after exit

Target

70%

70%

70%

70%

73%

65.2%

Result

63%

70%

72%

70%

69%

70.0%**

*

N

Y

Y

Y

N

Y

Percent of participants employed in the first quarter after exit still employed in the second and third quarters after exit

Target

88%

89%

85%

85%

91%

87.5%

Result

89%

91%

90%

88%

90%

89.0%**

*

Y

Y

Y

Y

I

Y

Average earnings in the second and third quarters after exit (six months' earnings)

Target

Baseline

$14,050

$13,386

Result

$13,914

$14,281

$13,967**

*

Y

Y

Goal Net Cost (millions)

$846

$700

$805

$755

$481

Source(s): Trade Act Participant Report (TAPR) included in the Enterprise Business Support System (EBSS), Quarterly Determinations, Allowance Activities and Employability Services, and Unemployment Insurance wage records.
Legacy Data: Some indicators not shown for FY 2004-06. Complete indicators, targets and results for FY 2004-06 are available in the FY 2006 report at http://www.dol.gov/_sec/media/reports/annual2006/PGD.htm. See Performance Goal 06-4.1B.
Note: Net Cost reflects the full cost of each program as assigned by DOL entities to the Department's outcome goals less any exchange revenue earned. Full cost consists of (a) both direct and indirect costs, and (b) the costs of identifiable supporting services provided by other segments within DOL and by other Federal agencies. Costs are not allocated to the indicator level for employment, retention and earnings measures because program activities are not separable into categories associated with one or another. The goal was reported as not achieved in the FY 2006 report; corrections to data for two of the three indicators changed this result.

Program Perspective and Logic

The Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) Program provides training, income support, and related assistance to workers who lose their jobs due to increased imports or shifts in production to foreign countries. The program's primary goal is to return workers to suitable employment. The TAA Program is one component of integrated services available through the nationwide network of One-Stop Career Centers, including those funded under the WIA Adult and Dislocated Worker Programs and the Wagner-Peyser Act. The comprehensive readjustment services and benefits offered by the TAA Program include out-of-area job search and relocation assistance; training that can include occupational, on-the-job and remedial training; income support; and access to Health Coverage Tax Credit benefits. The One-Stop system provides counseling, assessment, and placement services for TAA participants.

The TAA program's success is measured by the extent to which it helps individuals regain economic self-sufficiency by quickly securing and maintaining employment. Economic factors, such as the compatibility of skills in the available labor force with needs of new businesses, contribute importantly to reemployment. Therefore, TAA continues to pursue a regional workforce investment strategy designed to create more employment opportunities that reach more workers and improve access to training. DOL measures the performance of this program with the Federal job training program common measures which enable the comparison of the TAA Program's results to those of similar education, employment and job training programs. Also, use of common measures removes a barrier to service integration among programs by ensuring that similar definitions and methodologies are used for measuring performance. The common measures are entered employment, employment retention, and average earnings.


José’s story is a prime example of how TAA helps determined American workers compete. After working for seven years at a large lumber mill, José was laid off when his employer ceased operations. After his company was certified for TAA, José enrolled in an instrumentation mechanic training program. TAA provided tuition, funding for tools, books and fees, and income support during training so he could concentrate on his studies. Over the next two years, José’s hard work and dedication earned him a cumulative grade point average of 3.50. Six weeks before graduation in June 2009, he was offered employment as an instrumentation mechanic with a large petroleum refinery. He now earns twice the hourly wage he was making just two years ago as a lumber mill forklift operator. José credits TAA for assisting him in his time of need and helping him turn adversity into success. For that, José says “Thank You!”

[Photo credit: DOL/ETA]

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Recovery Act

Division B of the Recovery Act included the Trade and Globalization Adjustment Assistance Act (TGAAA) of 2009, which expanded eligibility for benefits to Service Workers, Public Employees, and workers who produce component parts of the finished products. The annual funding cap for training services was raised from $220 million to $575 million. In addition, for petitions filed on or after May 18, 2009, TGAAA added 26 weeks of additional Trade Readjustment Allowances — income support to eligible workers who have exhausted their entitlement to Unemployment Compensation benefits.

Analysis and Future Plans

TAA achieved its performance goal. The entered employmment rate was almost five percentage points above the target of 65.2 percent, the retention rate was 1.5 points above the target of 87.5 percent, and six-month average earnings were $581 above the target of $13,386.

Net costs of TAA activities decreased by 36 percent from FY 2008 to FY 2009 due to decreased utilization of the TAA income support component. Trade affected workers are also eligible for Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefits, which are provided in lieu of TAA income support and were significantly expanded and extended in FY 2009.

Entered Employment Rate (EER), Employment Retention Rate (ERR), and Net Cost - TAA

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DOL plans further implementation of the extensive changes contained in the 2009 Amendments — for example, guidance and training for State staff who deliver services to trade affected workers. Another priority is developing the capability to process the significantly increased flow of petitions. Although the Department hired and trained new staff for the surge in workload, they have been unable to keep up with the accelerating volume of petitions filed under the new provisions that became effective on May 18, 2009. Consequently, TAA enters FY 2010 with a significant backlog.

Indicator

*

What worked

What didn't work

Entered employment rate

Y

  • Monthly conference calls with all six Regions.
  • Reporting focus at Regional Roundtables for State Workforce Agency staff.
  • The economic downturn and higher unemployment rate had a negative impact.

Employment retention rate

Y

Average earnings

Y

Program Performance Improvement Plan

  • Continue to focus on obtaining timely and accurate data. The 2009 Amendments required an extensive revision to the data collection component of State reporting. Implementing those changes and the transparency and accountability they foster, should result in a greater focus on meeting performance goals by State Workforce Agency staff.

*Target reached (Y), improved (I), or not reached (N).

In 2010, TAA's activities will contribute to the following outcome goals in support of the Department's Strategic Vision of Good Jobs for Everyone:

  • Increasing workers' incomes and narrowing wage and income inequality; and
  • Helping workers who are in low-wage jobs or out of the labor market find a path into middle-class jobs; and
  • Helping middle-class families remain in the middle-class.

Program Assessments, Evaluations and Audits

Findings and recommendations from a Trade Adjustment Assistance assessment completed in 2007 prompted specific actions to improve performance. Here is a summary of progress in FY 2009:

  • Adjusting the formula for allocating training funds to the States to better reflect the current need for training. TGAAA modified the funding formula under which States receive allocations for training services for trade affected workers to apply four factors: (1) the number of workers covered by certifications of eligibility during the most recent four consecutive calendar quarters; (2) the number of workers participating in training during the most recent four consecutive calendar quarters; (3) the number of workers estimated to be participating in training during the fiscal year; and (4) the amount of funding estimated to be necessary to provide approved training during the fiscal year. In addition, the 85 percent hold harmless factor — a guarantee of funding based on the amount received in the prior year — was reduced to 25 percent to better reflect current need, rather than historical usage.
  • Developing an internal review process to verify the accuracy of trade petition certifications and denials. Options for developing a trade petition quality review component are being considered. However, due to the extensive implementation needs presented by program reauthorization, which included changes in the certification and denial criteria, the Department has deferred developing this process until the parameters of the new certification process are in place and fully operational.
  • Adopting efficiency measures that are linked to performance outcomes, account for all costs, and facilitate comparisons across Department of Labor training and employment programs. An independent study completed in PY 2008 recommended outcome-based efficiency measures for which the Department is collecting baseline data. These data will inform the selection of appropriate measures for each program. Additional research on setting performance standards and targets will be completed by December 2009.

More information is available at http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/expectmore/summary/10000340.2007.html.

No independent evaluations or audits were completed in FY 2009.

Data Quality and Top Management Challenges

Data quality for this performance goal is rated Fair.31 TAA data meet the threshold criteria of accuracy and relevance but do not yet satisfy the other criteria (timely, complete, valid, reliable, and verifiable). Based upon new requirements for data collection and reporting contained in the TGAAA, DOL has developed a new performance reporting system to provide more timely and accurate data. States will begin reporting under the new system during FY 2010. DOL will continue to require data validation by States, to monitor the data elements reported, and to take action on inconsistent responses requesting explanation or correction. Under the 2009 Amendments, States' reported data will be published on the ETA Web site and those States with missing data will be identified as delinquent — which provides an incentive for States to report accurately.

Performance Goal 09-2F (ETA)

Address worker shortages through Foreign Labor Certification Programs.

Indicators, Targets and Results

*Indicator target reached (Y), improved (I), or not reached (N)
**Estimated

FY 2005
Goal Not Achieved

FY 2006
Goal Not Achieved

FY 2007
Goal Not Achieved

FY 2008
Goal Sub-stantially Achieved

FY 2009
Goal Not Achieved

Percent of H-1B applications processed within seven days of the filing date for which no prevailing wage issues are identified

Target

100%

100%

100%

100%

100%

Result

100%

100%

98%

100%

100%**

*

Y

Y

N

Y

Y

Cost

Percent of employer applications for permanent labor certification under the streamlined system that are resolved within six months of filing

Target

baseline

60%

65%

75%

92%

Result

57%

86%

74%

92%

19%**

*

Y

Y

Y

Y

N

Cost

Percent of accepted H-2A applications with no pending State actions processed within 15 days of receipt and 30 days from the date of need

Target

95%

95%

60%

61%

Result

53%

55%

56%

46%**

*

N

N

I

N

Cost

Percent of the H-2B applications processed within 60 days of receipt

Target

90%

90%

90%

64%

71%

Result

85%

82%

62%

71%

33%**

*

N

N

N

Y

N

Cost

Goal Net Cost (millions)

$60

$46

$63

$40

$54


Source(s): Automated processing systems and fax/mail processing system.

Legacy Data: Some indicators not shown for FY 2005. Complete indicators, targets and results for FY 2005 are available in the FY 2006 report at http://www.dol.gov/_sec/media/reports/annual2006/PGD.htm. See Performance Goal 06-4.1A.
Note: Net Cost reflects the full cost of each program as assigned by DOL entities to the Department's outcome goals less any exchange revenue earned. Full cost consists of (a) both direct and indirect costs, and (b) the costs of identifiable supporting services provided by other segments within DOL and by other Federal agencies.

Program Perspective and Logic

Before a foreign worker may obtain employment in the United States under certain visa programs, the Immigration and Nationality Act requires that the Secretary of Labor certify to the Secretaries of Homeland Security and State that the employment of the foreign worker will not adversely affect the wages and working conditions of U.S. workers similarly employed. Employers who wish to hire a foreign worker on a permanent basis, and many employers seeking to hire foreign workers for temporary jobs, must first test the labor market for available U.S. workers. Labor certifications issued by the Department support employers' petitions, filed with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, to authorize employment of foreign workers under temporary visas (such as H-2A and H-2B) or under permanent, employment-based visas which may lead to lawful permanent residency.

Performance indicators are tied to statutory, regulatory, or internal processing requirements for Foreign Labor Certification programs. For example, the indicator for the permanent labor certification program measures the percent of employer applications for labor certification resolved within six months of filing. The other three performance indicators measure responsiveness to employers' time-sensitive demand for permission to hire temporary workers by tracking applications processed with ranges of seven to sixty days. Targets are based on performance information, data analysis, and anticipated application caseloads.

Analysis and Future Plans

The goal was not achieved. Only the H-1B Specialty Occupations Program reached its target for processing all applications within the statutory seven-day time frame. Results for the other three programs were well below their targets; processing times significantly increased due to new procedures designed to strengthen program integrity.

Only 19 percent of permanent labor certification program applications were processed within six months. Processing times for the permanent program were significantly impacted in FY 2009 by implementation of Permanent Electronic Review Management (PERM) integrity actions related to the 2007 Fraud Rule, which included new requirements and prohibitions for petitioners. The Department took aggressive action to ensure the integrity of the online application process — including filters to identify applications for audit; supervising recruitment for employers, when appropriate; and referring matters to the Office of Inspector General.

Performance of both the H-2A Temporary Agricultural Program and the H-2B Temporary Program for Non-Agricultural Seasonal Workers declined from FY 2008. The result for H-2A was 15 percentage points below target while the result for the H-2B performance measure was 38 percentage points below target. For both programs, regulations that became effective in January 2009 required revisions to application processing that had a significant negative impact on timeliness in FY 2009. However, economies of scale at the central processing facility in Chicago and increasing familiarity with the new process present opportunities for incremental improvement in FY 2010.

Indicator

*

What worked

What didn't work

H-1B process timeliness

Y

  • Pilots of integrity activities led to implementation of enhanced supervised recruitment and increased audit processes.

 

PERM process timeliness

N

  • Processing times increased significantly after implementation of additional integrity activities.

H-2A process timeliness

N

  • Processing negatively impacted by implementing the new regulations.

H-2B process timeliness

N

  • Processing times increased after implementation of additional integrity activities and new regulations.

Program Performance Improvement Plan

  • Complete the development of the ICERT system, which is a one-stop portal to improve access to employment-based visa application services and USDOL immigration news and information.


*Target reached (Y), improved (I), or not reached (N)

Text only

Net costs of Foreign Labor Certification activities increased by 36 percent from FY 2008-2009 due, in part, to a 27 percent increase in congressional appropriations, which funded new authorities and program areas previously constrained by limited resources. For example, in FY 2009, DOL let a contract to staff a new supervised recruitment function with 30 individuals in the Atlanta National Processing Center. This action implemented authority to apply additional scrutiny to certain employer applications and require employer applicants in select cases to conduct recruitment under DOL supervision. The Department also awarded contracts to support new program activities, including the opening of a new Prevailing Wage Determination Center and National Helpdesk offsite in Washington, DC, with associated staffing contract, space acquisition, and additional costs to outfit the new center. Space acquisition related to this center, a move to a new site in Chicago, and additional space to house the new supervised recruitment unit in Atlanta, all contributed to cost increases in FY 2009. In addition, in FY 2009 DOL awarded another large contract to stabilize and consolidate software development and system enhancements for its large, integrated case management system, and to further automate case processing in the temporary labor certification programs, which to date remains largely paper-based.

Program Assessments, Evaluations and Audits

Findings and recommendations from an H-1B Work Visa for Specialty Occupations Labor Condition Application Program assessment completed in 2004 prompted specific actions to improve performance. Here is a summary of progress in FY 2009:

  • Collaborating with the Department of Homeland Security and Department of State in a multi-agency data sharing effort to identify, address, and deter H-1B and other visa fraud. DOL established a multi-agency workgroup in July 2008 with membership from U.S. Customs and Immigration Service Fraud Detection and Policy Offices, Department of State, Department of Justice, and DOL Wage and Hour Division. The workgroup meets quarterly to share information on fraud-related activities with an emphasis on H-1B.

More information is at http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/expectmore/summary/10002378.2004.html.

The Permanent Labor Certification Program was also assessed in 2004. In FY 2009, DOL made progress on the improvement plan as follows:

  • Developing appropriate performance measures for the new program, and establish ambitious long-term and annual targets. In 2009, DOL developed two performance measures that are scheduled for implementation on October 1, 2010. One measure provides a more accurate definition of case processing time based on actual data while the second measure displays the level of compliance with the program and reflects PERM integrity actions.
  • Revising the application for Permanent Labor Certification (ETA Form 9089) to promote clarity and ease of use by employers, address implementation of the Fraud Rule, and promote efficient processing. DOL is working to revise the current electronic filing system to incorporate the changes to the application form. The completion of programming and testing is scheduled for spring of 2010 with implementation in July 2010.
  • Revising the PERM electronic system to reflect changes to the application for Permanent Labor Certification (ETA 9089) and providing system enhancements to promote program integrity. DOL is revising the current electronic filing system to incorporate the changes to the application form. The completion of programming and testing is now scheduled for spring of 2010.

For more information, see http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/expectmore/summary/10002380.2004.html.

Independent evaluations and audits completed in FY 2009 are summarized below.

"Immigration of Foreign Workers: Labor Market Tests and Protections," March 2009 (Congressional Research Service)

Relevance: The Congressional Research Service (CRS) conducted an analysis of the labor market test and worker protection responsibilities of the Department under the Immigration and Naturalization Act (INA).

Findings and Recommendations:

  • CRS concluded that there are common critiques underlying the recruitment of foreign workers with specialized expertise as well as low-skilled workers. For example, CRS found that many argue that the labor market tests in the INA in their current forms are insufficiently flexible, entail burdensome regulations, and may pose potential litigation expenses for employers. Proponents of these views support streamlining the process — particularly moving from labor certification based upon documented actions (i.e., evidence of recruitment advertisements) to a streamlined attestation of intent. Others maintain that the attestation process may be adequate for employers hiring H-1B workers because those foreign workers also must meet rigorous educational and work experience requirements, but that an attestation process would be an insufficient labor market test for jobs that do not require a baccalaureate education and skilled work experience.
  • CRS also concluded that legislation to reform the INA may provide an opportunity to revise and update the labor market tests; on the other hand, a consensus on the labor market tests may also be a hurdle to enacting immigration reform.

Actions:

  • On September 4, 2009, the Department issued a proposed rule to amend the regulations governing the employment of aliens under the H-2A program. Key provisions of the proposed rule include the enhancement of the recruitment process and the elimination of the existing attestation-based applications. The proposed rule is accessible at http://www.dol.gov/federalregister/.

Additional Information: This report is available at http://fpc.state.gov/documents/organization/122467.pdf.


Data Quality and Top Management Challenges

Data quality for this performance goal is rated Very Good.32 In FY 2009, DOL launched an electronic portal that improves accuracy of reported wages and Employer Identification Numbers by implementing mandatory registration and several data validation checks. Mandatory registration and data validation checks ensured greater precision and accuracy of the data, leading to greater integrity. DOL also regularly assesses data quality, collection methods, and the Web-based case management systems. These assessments ensure that data are reliable, appropriate, and useful to management.

Improving integrity of the foreign labor certification program, while continuing to process applications in a timely manner, remains among DOL's top management challenges (see Maintaining the Integrity of the Foreign Labor Certification Program, which is one of the Top Management Challenges in the Other Accompanying Information section). As discussed in the preceding paragraph, in FY 2009 DOL implemented a new data collection system for the H-1B program to improve data quality and reduce the potential for fraud. In FY 2010, electronic programs for the PERM system will be implemented; they are expected to improve data quality and efficiency.

Performance Goal 09-2G (ODEP)

Build knowledge and advance disability employment policy that affects and promotes systems change.

Indicators, Targets and Results

*Indicator target reached (Y), improved (I), or not reached (N)

FY 2006
Goal Achieved

FY 2007
Goal Achieved

FY 2008
Goal
Achieved

FY 2009
Goal
Achieved

Number of policy-related documents

Target

baseline

20

34

18

Result

20

34

44

38

*

Y

Y

Y

Y

Number of formal agreements

Target

baseline

20

23

13

Result

20

23

36

16

*

Y

Y

Y

Y

Number of effective practices

Target

21

20

24

15

Result

26

24

27

15

*

Y

Y

Y

Y

Goal Net Cost (millions)

$50

$34

$27

$29

Source(s): ODEP and independent evaluator.
Note: Net Cost reflects the full cost of each program as assigned by DOL entities to the Department's outcome goals less any exchange revenue earned. Full cost consists of (a) both direct and indirect costs, and (b) the costs of identifiable supporting services provided by other segments within DOL and by other Federal agencies. Costs are not allocated to indicators because program activities are not separable into categories associated with one or the other.

Program Perspective and Logic

The Department's Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) coordinates the development and promotes the implementation of policies and strategies to increase employment of people with disabilities. Increasing workforce participation of people with disabilities requires the removal of physical, programmatic, and attitudinal barriers to employment that exist in workforce systems, workplaces and corporate cultures, and employment supports programs and services. ODEP conducts research and analysis that validates and identifies innovative disability-employment practices and provides technical assistance to implement programs and systems that are universally usable.

ODEP is guided by its understanding that the traditional, stove-piped response to low employment rates among people with disabilities has not worked. ODEP's approach is coordinated, comprehensive, and collaborative. Success requires active involvement and cooperation of Federal, State, and local agencies; non-governmental organizations; and private and public sector employers. Collaboration with these stakeholders results in: policy development and its implementation that expands access to systems (such as employment and training, education, and vocational rehabilitation); improves business recruitment, hiring, and advancement of people with disabilities; and increases availability and accessibility of employment-related supports (such as health care, transportation and technology). The results of ODEP's efforts — policy-related documents, formal agreements, and effective practices — are reflected in the current indicators and targets.


Dustin S. attended five schools in as many years. Following a hospitalization, community service providers recommended his mother seek placement for him in a residential treatment center. Fortunately, she found the ODEP-sponsored Maryland High School/High Tech program’s University of Maryland Young Scholars Program, which enabled him to return home and go back to school – and his life changed dramatically. Dustin excelled in his school work, earning an “A” in a college course and three credits toward higher education. He also completed a summer internship at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, where he learned to operate a robotic arm designed to repair the Hubble Space Telescope and developed a user’s manual. Dustin has been invited back to the Goddard Center to continue his work during the school year. He now aspires toward a career in computer engineering.

[Photo credit: DOL/ODEP]

description in image credit

Analysis and Future Plans

ODEP achieved its goal by reaching the target for each of its three output measures. ODEP identified 15 effective practices in FY 2009. Targets for the two newer indicators (18 policy-related documents and 13 formal agreements) were reached, as well, with results of 38 and 16, respectively.

In FY 2009, ODEP continued to develop policy and policy strategies for the workforce system, employers and workplaces, and employment supports programs and service providers that improve the labor force participation of people with disabilities. ODEP's annual performance measure outputs are the foundation upon which ODEP bases its policy and with which ODEP conducts outreach and provides technical assistance to ensure that programs, business, and service providers adopt and implement innovative and effective policy.

Indicator

*

What worked

What didn't work

Policy-related documents

Y

  • Effective collaboration between ODEP's staff of experts, cooperative agreements with grantees, and contractors in generating policy documents.
  • Tracking agency performance data outside a centralized data system.

Formal agreements

Y

  • Formal agreements with public system owners and private stakeholders enforce standards of adoption, usability, implementation and relevance of its policy strategies.

Effective practices

Y

  • ODEP uses technical experts to identify, document and evaluate practices to ensure that they are effective and replicable.

Program Performance Improvement Plan

  • Develop a program planning approach based on a number of policy research areas such as: Customized employment, Assistive Technology, Employment trends, Health and wellness and Employment Supports Policy research.
  • Undertaking efforts to develop a system to collect and monitor its performance data. This will allow the agency to use data to enhance decision making and improve program performance.

*Target reached (Y), improved (I), or not reached (N)

Performance Goal 09-2G - Net Costs ($Millions)

Text only

ODEP net costs increased by eight percent from FY 2008-2009. This modest rise followed two years of significant decreases in funding levels.

In FY 2010, ODEP's activities will contribute to the following outcome goals in support of the Department's Strategic Vision of Good Jobs for Everyone:

  • Increasing workers' incomes and narrowing wage and income inequality;
  • Assuring skills and knowledge that prepare workers to succeed in a knowledge-based economy, including in high-growth and emerging industry sectors like "green" jobs;
  • Breaking down barriers to fair and diverse work places so that every worker's contribution is respected;
  • Improving health benefits and retirement security for all workers;
  • Providing workplace flexibility for family and personal care-giving;
  • Facilitating return to work for workers experiencing workplace injuries or illnesses who are able to work and sufficient income and medical care for those who are unable to work;
  • Helping workers who are in low-wage jobs or out of the labor market find a path into middle-class jobs;
  • Assuring that global markets are governed by fair market rules that protect vulnerable people, including women and children, and provide workers a fair share of their productivity and voice in their work lives; and
  • Helping middle-class families remain in the middle-class.

Program Assessments, Evaluations and Audits

Findings and recommendations from an Office of Disability Employment Policy assessment completed in 2006 prompted specific actions to improve performance. Here is a summary of progress in FY 2009:

  • Maintaining a consistent set of performance indicators to measure progress toward achieving long-term goals and developing a valid performance management tracking system for collecting data. The program evaluation work on the review of the agency's existing annual performance output measures and the pilot testing of proposed intermediate outcome measures has been completed. ODEP will be assessing the viability of the proposed recommendations related to the intermediate outcome measures and data tracking system.
  • Conducting a rigorous evaluation to assess the impact and effectiveness of the program's policy and coordination functions. ODEP and the contractor developed a set of intermediate outcome measures and pilot tested the use of a performance measurement system that generates valid and reliable data and evidence to assess the impact and effectiveness of the agency's annual and intermediate-term efforts. ODEP plans to build on its annual output and intermediate outcome measures to develop long-term outcome measures that will accurately measure ODEP's success in developing policies and assisting programs and systems in implementing those policies to improve labor force participation of people with disabilities.

More information is available at http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/expectmore/summary/10003911.2006.html.

There were no independent evaluations and audits completed in FY 2009.

Data Quality and Top Management Challenges

Data quality for this goal is rated Good.33 ODEP relies on contracted external independent evaluators to validate the data collection systems that support ODEP's performance measures. As ODEP continues to implement its strategic and performance plan, data quality will be improved to ensure uniform guidelines for collecting and reporting data, as well as increasing their validity in measuring program performance.

Performance Goal 09-2H (ILAB)

Contribute to the elimination of the worst forms of child labor internationally.

Indicators, Targets and Results

*Indicator target reached (Y), improved (I), or not reached (N)

FY 2006
Goal Achieved

FY 2007
Goal Achieved

FY 2008
Goal Achieved

FY 2009
Goal Achieved

Number of children prevented or withdrawn from exploitive child labor and provided education and/or training opportunities as a result of DOL-funded child labor elimination projects

Target

178,000

139,000

127,400

115,100

Result

236,541

205,297

167,335

144,890

*

Y

Y

Y

Y

Number of countries with increased capacities to address child labor as a result of DOL-funded child labor elimination projects

Target

39

31

33

24

Result

53

48

45

36

*

Y

Y

Y

Y

Goal Net Cost (millions)

$95

$101

$79

$69


Source(s):
Grantee technical progress reports and project monitoring.
Note: Net Cost reflects the full cost of each program as assigned by DOL entities to the Department's outcome goals less any exchange revenue earned. Full cost consists of (a) both direct and indirect costs, and (b) the costs of identifiable supporting services provided by other segments within DOL and by other Federal agencies. Costs are not allocated to indicators because program activities are not separable into categories associated with one or the other.

Program Perspective and Logic

The Bureau of International Labor Affairs (ILAB) contributes to the elimination of the worst forms of child labor internationally through its Congressionally-mandated research on child labor, efforts to increase public awareness of the issue, and support of projects to eliminate exploitive child labor by expanding access to quality basic education and training around the world. DOL-funded international child labor projects provide educational and other services to child laborers, at-risk children, and their families; assist in strengthening national and local capacity to eliminate exploitive child labor; and undertake research initiatives to better understand the issue and inform ongoing and future efforts to address it. ILAB is currently funding some 55 projects implemented by 45 organizations in over 50 countries worldwide.


This Nepalese girl formerly worked in a carpet factory spinning yarn. When she was in the second grade, her parents went into debt and could no longer afford her school fees. She dropped out of school and began working full time at the factory. In 2006, with the support of a Department of Labor-funded project implemented by World Education, she enrolled in a nine-month class that helped her catch up on the years of education she had missed. Subsequently, she was able to enroll in third grade in a government school. Now in sixth grade, she no longer works at the factory and looks forward to continuing her studies.

[Photo credit: World Education/David DuChemin]

description in image credit

ILAB measures its success in achieving this performance goal by two indicators. The first measures the number of children who, as a result of DOL-funded interventions, have been either withdrawn or prevented from exploitive labor. Children withdrawn refers to those removed from exploitive labor and enrolled in educational programs; children prevented are at-risk children who have been provided education services to keep them from entering exploitive labor. The second indicator captures ILAB's efforts to influence national policy, such as legislation aimed at eliminating exploitive child labor and integration of child labor concerns in anti-poverty and economic development programs.

ILAB establishes annual targets for these indicators through analysis of project data and external factors, many of which are inherent to implementing programs in developing countries. Civil unrest, natural disasters, economic shocks, exchange rate fluctuations, frequent changes in governments, and poor infrastructure can impact the progress of project implementation. ILAB's FY 2009 target for the withdrawal and prevention indicator is lower than its FY 2008 result due to lower funding levels in recent years, the dollar's devaluation, and, in some cases, a focus on difficult-to-reach children needing more costly interventions, such as child victims of trafficking.

Analysis and Future Plans

This goal was achieved, with targets exceeded for both indicators. During FY 2009, 144,890 children were withdrawn or prevented from exploitive labor as a result of their participation in DOL-funded projects. This included 28,665 children in Latin America and the Caribbean, 58,361 in sub-Saharan Africa, and 57,864 in Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and North Africa. In addition, 36 countries increased their capacity to address the issue of child labor as a result of DOL-funded projects' work in areas such as legal and policy reform, advocacy and awareness-raising, and training.

Indicator

*

What worked

What didn't work

Children prevented or withdrawn from exploitive labor

Y

  • After-school programs offering educational support, life-skills training, and recreational activities are keeping children from returning to hazardous work in the afternoons and are garnering support from governments and the private sector in several countries.
  • ILAB's projects have provided skills training to parents to address the poverty that often leads to child labor, but this strategy had limited impact without the addition of other income generating activities.

Countries with increased capacity to address child labor

Y

  • When DOL-funded projects in a given country work collaboratively, capitalizing on their respective strengths, they have had greater success in increasing country capacity to address child labor.
  • Three to four years (duration of grants) is insufficient to sustain changes in national child labor policies, particularly in countries where there is widespread acceptance of the practice.

Program Performance Improvement Plan

  • ILAB will augment its focus on interventions that help alleviate the chronic poverty that is often the root cause of child labor by encouraging its grantees to adopt or link with interventions that foster entrepreneurship and sustainable livelihoods.


*Target reached (Y), improved (I), or not reached (N)

Performance Goal 09-2H - Net Costs ($Millions)

Text only

Net costs of ILAB activities decreased by 12 percent from FY 2008-2009. Historically, net costs reflect significant changes in appropriations for international child labor elimination projects and typical lags of up to three years between funding and expenditures. Annual appropriations for ILAB peaked in FY 2002-2004 before declining by over 25 percent over the next two years and remaining at that reduced level through 2009. The chart follows this trend, indicating a peak in FY 2007 and subsequent steep decline.

In 2010, ILAB's activities will contribute to the outcome goal assuring that global markets are governed by fair market rules that protect vulnerable people, including women and children, and provide workers a fair share of their productivity and voice in their work lives in support of the Department's Strategic Vision of Good Jobs for Everyone.

Program Assessments, Evaluations and Audits

Findings and recommendations from an ILAB assessment completed in 2004 prompted specific actions to improve performance. Here is a summary of progress in FY 2009:

  • Conducting a comprehensive evaluation of the program's technical assistance activities to assess the programs' overall impact and effectiveness, including program sustainability. A third-party evaluation of the impact and effectiveness of ILAB's child labor technical cooperation program is ongoing. It employs a mixed methodology of surveys, interviews and field visits. Due to administrative delays, the evaluation will likely be finalized in the second quarter of FY 2011.
  • Reconsidering the agency's role in government-wide international assistance efforts. ILAB anticipates that the results of the ongoing third-party evaluation will inform policymakers in their review of the agency's future role and responsibilities.
  • Implementing a cost-efficiency performance measure to reflect ILAB's policy functions. ILAB is working to identify relevant and valid cost-efficiency measures for its programs.

More information is available at http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/expectmore/summary/10002384.2004.html.

Independent evaluations and audits completed in FY 2009 are summarized below.

"ILAB Could Further Improve Oversight of Attestation Engagements," March 2009 (OIG)

Relevance: The OIG found that ILAB did not incorporate requirements needed to meet its quality assurance policies and procedures in the Independent Public Accountant's (IPA's) contract; systematically conduct and document reviews of IPA attest documentation; or require the IPA to submit external peer review reports.

Findings and Recommendations:

  • ILAB should incorporate requirements needed to meet its quality assurance policies and procedures in the Independent Public Account firm's (IPA) contract.
  • ILAB should expand and document its reviews of IPA attest documentation.
  • ILAB should require the IPA to submit external peer review reports.

Actions:

  • ILAB incorporated in the FY 2009 solicitation for grant applications and contract terms a summary of key policies and procedures related to its monitoring of the IPA's work, such as requiring applicants to submit a description of their quality control procedures and to provide access to the IPA's working papers for review by ILAB and the Grant Officer following contract award.
  • In FY 2009, ILAB's Office of Child Labor, Forced Labor, and Human Trafficking revised its Operations Manual to define more precisely the extent of ILAB reviews of the IPA's working papers and the circumstances that warrant such reviews.
  • ILAB included a requirement for the most recent external peer review report and related letter of comment, if any, to be submitted as part of the application package for the FY 2009 solicitation.

Additional Information: The report is available at http://www.oig.dol.gov/public/reports/oa/2009/05-09-004-01-070.pdf.


All DOL-funded child labor elimination projects undergo mid-term and final evaluations, and selected projects undergo project-level performance and financial attestation engagements. During FY 2009, independent evaluators conducted over 25 project evaluations and six attestation engagements. ILAB is posting finalized evaluation and attestation engagement reports on the DOL Web site as they become available.

Data Quality and Top Management Challenges

Data quality for this performance goal is rated Excellent.33 ILAB, which does not have an overseas presence, has developed a multi-pronged strategy for monitoring data quality and project performance. This includes semi-annual project-level financial and technical progress reports, performance monitoring plans, and mid-term and final project evaluations. In addition, financial and performance-related attestation engagements are being conducted by a private certified public accounting firm on many DOL-funded child labor projects. These attestation engagements review data to ensure that grantees are reporting results based on ILAB-established definitions, and that the data are supported by adequate records and observation. When issues in reporting are identified, grantees are required to provide a corrective action plan to revise the data as necessary.


This teenager in Uganda, who used to work 10-hour shifts gathering firewood in the forest, now attends school and aspires to become a teacher, thanks to LEAP (Livelihoods, Education, and Protection to End Child Labor) – a project funded by the Department of Labor and implemented by the International Rescue Committee. LEAP covers the cost of school fees and provides books, uniforms, and school supplies so that child laborers and at-risk children can afford to attend school. LEAP also trains teachers in new teaching methodologies and renovates classrooms in run-down schools so that schooling is a safer and relevant alternative to work.

[Photo credit: International Rescue Committee/LEAP]

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To strengthen project oversight, ILAB introduced a new internal monitoring tool in FY 2008 through pilot accountability reviews. These reviews include assessments of reliability and validity of performance data as well as compliance with OMB circulars, DOL policies, ILAB Management Procedures and Guidelines, and the terms of grantees' Cooperative Agreements. The first pilot review of a Child Labor Education Initiative project in the Philippines identified the need for a more systematic approach to the project's monitoring of the working status of beneficiaries. The grantee has incorporated the review's recommendations in the design of its grant for a second project in the Philippines that should not only improve the reliability of the performance data reported to ILAB but, more importantly, enhance protections against exploitive child labor for the project's beneficiaries.

Footnotes

22Employment and retention results (first two bullets) are displayed in charts on the next page.
23Several Federal agencies, including the Departments of Labor, Education, Health and Human Services, Interior and Veterans Affairs, administer programs that share the goal of helping people find jobs. To inform comparative evaluations of effectiveness, the Administration worked with these agencies to develop outcome measures that apply to their diverse methods and target populations. While these measures have evolved over the last several years, they have consistently focused on participants' entered employment and employment retention rates, and earnings.
24Rows labeled "Dollars not associated with indicators" indicate costs that cannot be associated with the current set of performance indicators. For some goals, indicator costs are intentionally combined by merging cells because program activities are not separable into categories associated with one or another of them (e.g., job training program common measures — entered employment, employment retention and average earnings).
25Net Cost reflects the full cost of each program as assigned by DOL entities to the Department's outcome goals less any exchange revenue earned. Full cost consists of (a) both direct and indirect costs, and (b) the costs of identifiable supporting services provided by other segments within DOL and by other Federal agencies. Sums may not equal higher level totals due to rounding.
26Information on DOL's Data Quality Assessments, conducted annually for each performance goal, can be found in the Introduction to the Performance Section.
27Information on DOL's Data Quality Assessments, conducted annually for each performance goal, can be found in the Introduction to the Performance Section.
28Information on DOL's Data Quality Assessments, conducted annually for each performance goal, can be found in the Introduction to the Performance Section.
29Information on DOL's Data Quality Assessments, conducted annually for each performance goal, can be found in the Introduction to the Performance Section.
30Information on DOL's Data Quality Assessments, conducted annually for each performance goal, can be found in the Introduction to the Performance Section.
31Information on DOL's Data Quality Assessments, conducted annually for each performance goal, can be found in the Introduction to the Performance Section.
32Information on DOL's Data Quality Assessments, conducted annually for each performance goal, can be found in the Introduction to the Performance Section.
33Information on DOL's Data Quality Assessments, conducted annually for each performance goal, can be found in the Introduction to the Performance Section.
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