Information for this study was gathered through site visits conducted between April and August 1999 by researchers from MPR and our subcontractor, the National Alliance of Businesses (NAB). During the site visits, two-person research teams met with staff from the welfare office, an agency from the workforce development system, selected intermediaries, and employers who actively hire welfare recipients through intermediaries. We obtained information on intermediaries with whom we did not meet through meetings with staff from the welfare office and workforce development system, written material collected during our site visits, and through an information request sent to individual intermediaries.
From the site visits, general information about intermediaries was collected and entered into a database containing information on all of the intermediaries in each site. This information falls into four key areas:
- Program responsibility, which identifies how program responsibilities are allocated among agencies within the services delivery system;(2)
- Payment information, which includes information on how and how much intermediaries are paid for their services;
- Services, which lists the types of services intermediaries provide; and
- Characteristics, which provides basic data on each intermediary, such as type of agency, funding sources, and the types of clients who are served.
In all, the database includes information on 120 intermediary organizations in 18 of the 20 sites. (Two sites have no intermediaries that met our criteria for inclusion in the study.) In the sites with intermediaries, the number of intermediaries ranges from 1 to 29. Whenever possible, we have included intermediaries funded through TANF and the Welfare-to-Work program.