About the Study
In 2023, the Chief Evaluation Office (CEO), in collaboration with the Office of Workforce Investment (OWI) located in the Employment and Training Administration (ETA), funded independent contractor Economic Systems, Inc. (EconSys) to conduct the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) Evaluation. This project is an implementation study intent on better understanding WOTC, including how it is administered by state workforce agencies, how it serves job seekers and employers, the effectiveness and efficiency of its current design, potential improvements in structure and operations, and potential future research in this area. This study will gather relevant descriptive statistics and perform an evaluability assessment to identify appropriate designs for further study.
This Department of Labor-funded study was a result of the annual process to determine the Department’s research priorities for the upcoming year. It contributes to the labor evidence-base to inform programs and policies that impact employment and training. The project also addresses Departmental strategic goals and priorities.
- How is WOTC currently operating?
- What are the characteristics of jobs of WOTC-hires?
- What types of employers apply for WOTC?
- How are denials spread across WOTC-targeted groups?
- How is WOTC reflected in employer hiring and retention practices/policies?
- To what extent does pre-screening for WOTC eligibility affect employment outcomes?
- What is the degree of WOTC awareness and utilization among employers and related partners, and what factors appear to influence this?
- How do DOL and the workforce system meet the needs of employers and prospective employees through WOTC, and where are the areas for improvement?
The Department of Labor’s (DOL) Chief Evaluation Office (CEO) sponsors independent evaluations and research, primarily conducted by external, third-party contractors in accordance with the Department of Labor Evaluation Policy. CEO’s research development process includes extensive technical review at the design, data collection and analysis stage, including: external contractor review and OMB review and approval of data collection methods and instruments per the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA), Institutional Review Board (IRB) review to ensure studies adhere to the highest ethical standards, review by academic peers (e.g., Technical Working Groups), and inputs from relevant DOL agency and program officials and CEO technical staff. Final reports undergo an additional independent expert technical review and a review for Section 508 compliance prior to publication. The resulting reports represent findings from this independent research and do not represent DOL positions or policies.