Utilizing and Improving Workforce Data Systems to Support Research and Evaluation
Efficient and well-connected workforce data systems have the potential to drive collaboration and improve outcomes across programs and organizations. Establishing these systems, however, requires planning and commitment across multiple stakeholders. The following WSS resources look at previous workforce data collaborations at the state level and identify successful outcomes and lessons learned.
2015 Mastering the Blueprint: State Progress on Workforce Data. 2015. This report evaluates 47 states’ data systems using the Workforce Data Quality Campaign’s thirteen-point State Blueprint, developed to help promote multi-state cooperation to improve state data and provide policymakers and other stakeholders with information to better align education with employer needs. The Blueprint assesses state data systems on the extent to which they include all students and pathways, count industry-recognized credentials, assess employer outcomes, expand the use of labor market information, and ensure data access and appropriate use. The authors find states “achieved the most success creating inclusive cross-agency councils, improving [labor market information] data collection, analysis, and distribution, as well as determining whether graduates get jobs.”
Making the Most of Workforce Data: State Collaboration with External Entities for Actionable Research. 2016. This resource discusses the composition of workforce data systems in Kentucky, Minnesota, and New York, as well as the processes for making data available to stakeholders and maintaining confidentiality. These states “have strategically collaborated with external organizations to enhance their capacity for research, data analysis and interpretation, and unbiased assessment of outcomes. Thus, these states are able to use their data not only to meet federal reporting requirements, but also to conduct actionable research that can help prioritize effective programs.”
Using Workforce Data Quality Initiative Databases to Develop and Improve Consumer Report Card Systems. 2014. This study examines the use of Workforce Data Quality Initiative grants in the development of Consumer Report Card Systems (CRCSs). CRCSs are data systems for measuring program outcomes among education and training programs. The report further examines “the degree to which states without CRCSs are prepared to implement them” based upon existing data infrastructure. Based on their findings, the authors provide recommendations for future support of CRCS development.