Evaluating Two Approaches to Case Management: Implementation, Participation Patterns, Costs, and Three-Year Impacts of the Columbus Welfare-to-Work Program. Perceptions of Program Effectiveness

06/01/2001

Figure 2.6 shows that most Columbus staff thought that the JOBS program would help welfare recipients become self-supporting, but slightly more integrated case managers than traditional JOBS case managers expressed confidence in the program. A slightly smaller proportion of recipients in the traditional program than in the integrated program said they thought that the program improved their chances of getting or keeping a job.

Figure 2.6
Perceptions of the Effectiveness of JOBS

Perceptions of the Effectiveness of JOBS

During field visits, researchers heard contradictory opinions about the effectiveness of the JOBS program: Some staff believed that they were making a real impact, whereas others were doubtful or felt that the effects would take many years to show up. Staff in both programs thought that although caseloads were higher than ideal, integrated case management was more effective than the traditional model. Some staff thought that requiring a high school diploma or GED for entry into job search activities unnecessarily restricted the number of people who were helped to find employment.

Endnotes

1.  See Scrivener et al., 1998, Appendix B, for a description of this scale and the others used in this chapter.

2.  See Hamilton and Brock, 1994, for caseload sizes in all the NEWWS Evaluation programs.

3.  This average of 140 is from the staff survey administered in October 1993. Caseloads fluctuated over the evaluation period but generally were larger than planned.

4.  Many variables influence caseload sizes in a welfare-to-work program, including factors outside the program, such as the availability of jobs in the community, making caseload predictions difficult.

5.  The average caseload was 175 in Oklahoma City in the middle of the follow-up period covered in the report (see Storto et al., 2000).

6.  See Scrivener et al., 1998.

7.  In this figure, as in others in the chapter, Columbus staff survey responses are depicted along with the range of responses of staff in other NEWWS Evaluation programs, indicated by the low, median, and high points. For example, the "low" point on the first item in Figure 2.2 refers to the NEWWS program with the lowest percentage of staff who said that they received helpful training on how to be an effective JOBS case manager. The "med" point refers to the program with the median percentage among all programs, and the "high" point refers to the program with the highest percentage of staff who said they received helpful training. These ranges include the Columbus staff in the calculation. See Appendix Tables A.1 and A.2 for each program's value on the survey scales presented in this chapter. (Some later figures also show survey responses of Columbus sample members, depicted along with the range of responses of other sample members in the evaluation. Appendix Table A.3 shows each program's value on the client survey question used in the figures.)

8.  Freedman et al., 2000.