Coordination and Integration of Welfare and Workforce Development Systems. Technology


Technology is having a broad impact on the nature of welfare-workforce system coordination, in some cases making physical location far less important for coordination. Labor market information provided by the DOL as well from state ES agencies, is available on the Internet. Software for preparing resumes, writing cover letters, assessing job interests and skills, and brushing up on basic math and language skills is readily available. These services can be offered at any location that has a computer. On our site visits, we saw computers being used to access labor market information, prepare resumes, and assist in career choices and job searches, at welfare offices, at JTPA/WIA agencies, at one-stop career centers, at community colleges, and at the offices of private employment and training contractors. For the client, this results in fewer separate trips and a choice of locations for some services. For example, a client could check job listings or prepare a resume while at the TANF office to meet with a case manager or after attending a work readiness class at the workforce development agency. For agency staff, technology improves access to information about the programs and services offered by other agencies and facilitates referrals of individual clients.

  • In Painesville, the welfare agency and JTPA/WIA agency have been part of a wider effort in the county to establish a "virtual one-stop" that would link human service agencies in the county via the Internet. The Internet site will include a listing of local job openings and information about availability of local services. Partners in this effort include: the welfare agency, the JTPA/WIA agency, ES, VR, the local Chamber of Commerce, the local community college, and others.
  • The Beaver County welfare office electronically refers job-ready clients to the Job Service on a daily basis. The welfare office also receives weekly updates of job listings from the Job Service.
  • The one-stop in Charleston has an area set aside as an "Internet café" that offers free Internet access to one-stop customers as well as self-serve coffee.