Opening Speech - Commissioner Andor E N


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Opening Speech - Commissioner Andor E N

  1. 1. The One-Stop System in the United States Conference on Shaping the Future of the European Social Fund (ESF) June 23, 2010 Dianne Blank Assistant Director U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO)
  2. 2. Progression of employment and training policy in the U.S. • Key policy themes • Less focus on— • Income eligibility as the gateway to services • Job training as the primary means for getting a job • More focus on— • Personal responsibility • Reducing duplication of effort, but through service coordination • State and local flexibility in decisionmaking • Involving the private sector • Workforce Investment Act of 1998 mandated use of one-stop service delivery system. 2
  3. 3. Sixteen employment and training programs must provide services thru one-stop system Source: Workforce Investment Act 3
  4. 4. Structure of one-stop system • Each state must have one or more local areas • Governed by state and local workforce investment boards (WIBs) • Boards make key policy decisions and provide oversight • Private sector chairs board and must be in majority • Each local area must have one or more comprehensive one-stop center • One-stop centers have no funding for infrastructure-- programs share cost 4
  5. 5. Local flexibility is key to WIA’s program design • States and local areas decide many aspects • Where to place their one-stop center(s) • What programs are on-site or available remotely • How infrastructure costs will be shared • How to organize services and who provides them • This flexibility allows for tailoring services to meet local needs and facilitates innovation • Consistency across one-stop centers not important • But, compliance with individual program requirements must be ensured • Reporting requirements • Oversight activities 5
  6. 6. Consolidating services through the one-stop has brought challenges • Lack of infrastructure funding • Most states rely on one or two programs • Funding cuts have sometimes meant fewer centers • Some centers have supplemented funding • Developing linkages between programs • Services increasingly available, but more emphasis on electronic linkages or referral • Linkages between key programs never developed in some states • Creating effective governance structure • Engaging private sector proved challenging • Workforce boards tend to be large and unwieldy • Federal agencies other than Labor have been slow to engage 6
  7. 7. What do we know about how well the WIA one- stop system is working? • Two ways to assess • Performance measurement • Rigorous evaluations • WIA’s performance measurement system • Outcomes are compared to performance goals and result in incentive funding or financial sanctions • Uses data already available from unemployment records • But, WIA’s performance system has shortcomings and does not provide for assessing one-stop performance • WIA required a rigorous evaluation, but Labor was slow to act • Results not available until 2015 • Limited to 3 WIA-funded programs 7
  8. 8. The future of WIA • WIA was due to be renewed in 2003, but efforts thus far have stalled • When action is taken, some key questions deserve attention • How can we ensure policymakers have the information they need to make decisions about where to invest scarce resources? • How might the key players at all levels be brought to the table to participate as stakeholders and investors? • How can we balance flexibility and accountability to achieve the goals of WIA? • What can be done to make the system more nimble and able to adapt to changing economic and budgetary conditions? 8
  9. 9. For more information Contacts Andrew Sherrill, Director Education, Workforce and Income Security Issues 202-512-7252 Dianne Blank, Assistant Director Education, Workforce and Income Security Issues 202-512-5654 Laura Heald, Assistant Director Education, Workforce and Income Security Issues 202-512-8701 To access our reports, visit 9