Compares the employment status and earnings of veterans and non-veterans who participated in workforce development programs through propensity score matching; and describes differences in program participation and outcomes based on data from Washington State between 2002 to 2012.

“Building on previous research that tracks the workforce system, [this report] examine[s] the specific experiences of veterans in the workforce development system in Washington State during the years 2002–2012. Using wage and employment data from the Unemployment Insurance system (for the years 2000–2012) and program participation and demographic data from the state workforce caseload management system (covering the years 2002–2012), [the author] address[es] these three research questions [through regression analyses and propensity score matching]:

1) Which workforce services did veterans use most frequently?

2) Within key programs and across all programs, did veterans obtain and retain employment at the same rates as other participants?

3) Were postprogram earnings levels of veteran participants similar to those of nonveteran participants?

The goal of this research is to assess the effectiveness of the workforce development system for military veterans, one of its key customer groups” (p.1).

“[L]ittle research has focused exclusively on veterans in the workforce development system and their associated labor market experiences, despite the prioritization of veterans within the system. The most closely related research to the current paper is an evaluation of the Priority of Service provision of the Jobs for Veterans Act, commissioned by the U.S. Department of Labor. It finds that service receipt within the [Workforce Investment Act] WIA Adult and Dislocated Worker programs was similar for veterans and nonveterans, that employment rates were similar, and that earnings were higher among veterans both before and after program participation” (p.4).

“Based on the limited related literature,…the hypotheses of this paper are that

1) veterans who have recently participated [in] the workforce development system will have lower rates of employment than nonveterans, since that is the trend among recent veterans in the population at large, but

2) veterans who are employed will have higher earnings than nonveterans, since that is also the trend among less-skilled veterans and nonveterans in the general population.

Overall, the aim of the current research is to add to…knowledge of the experiences of veterans and shed light on strengths and opportunities within the realm of workforce development service provision for veterans” (p.5).

(Abstractor: Author and Website Staff)