In the past few years, sector strategies have gained traction in the United States’ labor market. Some policy makers and practitioners have adopted these strategies to better meet the needs of both workers and employers. The WSS resources described in this announcement provide a framework for understanding best practices, challenges when implementing sector strategies, and also discuss the results of an impact evaluation study on a sector strategy model called WorkAdvance.  

Sector Strategies: Aligning the Skills of the Workforce with the Needs of Employers. 2015. This resource provides a framework to understand sector strategies and describes how 28 Local Workforce Investment Areas targeted specific sectors. The resource highlights sectors most commonly targeted by the local areas, and offers illustrative examples of sector strategies partnerships.

Sector-Based Training Strategies: The Challenges of Matching Workers and their Skills to Well-Paying Jobs. 2015. This resource reviews sector strategies and pathway approaches, including evidence to explain the widespread adoption of these models. Seen as a promising strategy for regional economic development, this paper describes the use of these demand-driven models to attract and retain targeted industries; discusses challenges to the growth of sector strategies; and provides policy and program recommendations at the local, state, and federal level.  

Encouraging Evidence on a Sector-Focused Advancement Strategy: Two-Year Impacts from the WorkAdvance Demonstration. 2016. This resource presents two-year findings from an impact evaluation of the WorkAdvance model, a Social Innovation Fund-sponsored initiative in New York City, Tulsa, Oklahoma, and Northeast Ohio.  The study found the intervention effectively aligned training for low-skilled job seekers to meet the needs of employers in information technology, health care, transportation, manufacturing, and environmental remediation industry sectors.