Saturday, August 10, 2013

DOL Looks to Speed Up Re-employment in the Workforce

The United States Department of Labor (DOL) ia awarding over $65 million dollars aimed at help re-employed Unemployment Insurance (UI) beneficiaries more rapidly. The recently-announced grants are pointed at Reemployment and Eligibility Assessment (REA) programs to speed up the process of getting UI recipients back into the workforce.

The REA initiative, which has existed since 2005, is based on cost-effective and efficient administrative methods from previous research and finding. The multifaceted approach aims at ensuring claimants meet the state eligibility provisions as well as them being exposed to re-employment services (RES) like job search assistance and placement services.

The funds are earmarked to:

”provide UI beneficiaries with personalized, re-employment plans based on the claimant’s career interests and local labor market information. These assessments are done in-person and participants will receive referrals to re-employment services and/or training provided by the American Job Center.” (via DOL news release).

The reduction of improper payment occurrence is also made provision for by allowing for a UI claimant’s records review..

The findings of a 2011 study performed by Impaq International on the impact of the REA initiative in Nevada formed the basis of the DOL’s initiative. In it, it was determined that UI beneficiaries in the REA program left the program quicker than those that did not have access to the program. The result was lowered UI duration and, as a result, savings on the UI trust. The study also claimed: “It appears that providing REA and RES services by the same staff in a single interview may be a key factor that led to greater program impacts in Nevada.”

The program’s has reaffirmed its commitment to existing REA programs in the other states and territories, and expanded it to include funds for Delaware, Connecticut and the Virgin Islands.

KRA Corporation understands the importance of consistency and familiarity in aiding our customers to successfully navigate the options and steps available to them in re-joining the workforce. Our operation of One-Stop Career Centers (One-Stops), one of which is in Connecticut, puts us in contact with numerous job seekers (many of whom are WIA-eligible Adult/Dislocated Workers) and as a result we appreciate that as the UI circumstances of no two WIA customers are the same, individualizing our the approach to each of those job seekers becomes important.

The DOL’s continued efforts to address the national economic burden that unemployment poses is a commitment that KRA Corporation appreciates. The efforts of workforce development can only benefit from the use of targeted funds from models with proven outcomes, such as One-Stops and AJCs.

Through our extensive experience and expertise in comprehensive WIA Adult/Dislocated Workers, and WIA Youth Services programs, The KRA Corporation team will continue to support workforce development systems that combat the effects of unemployment on individuals and the communities in which they live.

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