The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), which was signed into law in 2014, places a new focus on pursing evidence-based practices in workforce development.

What is an Evidence-Based Practice?

Evidence-based practices are often referred to in the analogy of a three-legged chair which incorporates three basic concepts:  

  1. the best research currently available demonstrating evidence on whether a process, approach, or strategy works and how, 
  2. subject matter expertise (such as professional knowledge and counseling experience) to assess situations for appropriate workforce interventions, and the likelihood of success given various barriers and employment situations, and
  3. participant choice in terms of their talents, aptitudes, career goals and need for self-sufficiency.

 Making the Case for What Works

Evidence-based practices involve the process of systematically finding, appraising and using current research findings as the basis for making sound programmatic design decisions.

In the Making the Case for What Works tutorial here, and using the other materials on this resource page, you will learn how to use evidence-based practices to inform the development of new programs or initiatives. 

Armed with information on what practices result in the best outcomes for your customers, you can communicate to funders and other stakeholders the value of your idea and why they might want to invest in it.


Using Evidence-Based Practices to Support Innovation

While there are varying levels of research and types of evidence used to measure outcomes, many standardizations that are known to be effective can result in improvements and innovations in the workforce system.

Success in incorporating evidence-based practices entails conducting or finding research and evaluation, using data-driven approaches, measuring outcomes and assessing effectiveness of processes and procedures.

Knowledge is power.  In every situation faced by job seekers, workers and the employers you serve, they will require a unique assessment and customized individual employment plan or individual service strategy.  But to ensure our collective success, you still can employ the power of what works.