The Effects of Employment Counseling on Labor Market Outcomes for Adults and Dislocated Workers: Evidence from a Nationally Representative Experiment

The Effects of Employment Counseling on Labor Market Outcomes for Adults and Dislocated Workers: Evidence from a Nationally Representative Experiment

Published: Apr 12, 2021
Publisher: Journal of Policy Analysis and Management (online ahead of print)
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Associated Project

Workforce Investment Act Adult and Dislocated Worker Programs Gold Standard Evaluation

Time frame: 2008-2017

Prepared for:

U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration

Authors

This Journal of Policy Analysis & Management article examines the effects of “intensive services” provided by the Adult and Dislocated Worker programs, two of the largest employment service programs in the United States. Intensive services include one‐on‐one staff assistance—assessments, coaching, career counseling, and service referrals. The study was a randomized controlled trial conducted in 28 randomly selected sites, with the randomization of job seekers to research groups with or without access to intensive services, yielding study findings with both internal and external validity. Using survey and administrative earnings data, we find that access to intensive services increased earnings by between 7 and 20 percent over a three‐year follow‐up period; these benefits exceed program costs from the perspective of both taxpayers and society as a whole. Although impacts were larger for more educated job seekers and in areas with higher rates of unemployment, impacts were similar across many other subgroups, including for adults compared with dislocated workers.

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