Design, Sites, and Data Sources
The impact of the program is being rigorously measured through a random assignment research design. In this design — which is widely considered to be the most reliable evaluation approach — eligible individuals are assigned through a lottery to either a program group that is offered WorkAdvance services or to a control group that is not eligible for WorkAdvance services but that remains eligible for other services in the community. To assist local subgrantee programs with the development and launch of the various components of WorkAdvance, each of the subgrantees received technical support from the study team.
Across the four sites in Tulsa, New York City, and northeast Ohio, the evaluation will examine the outcomes of approximately 2,500 research sample members, roughly half of whom will have received WorkAdvance services. In addition to baseline data about participants collected at the time of random assignment, the research will rely on program activity data from each site’s management information system, unemployment insurance wage records data, a survey administered around two years after random assignment, labor market information, program records on recruitment and screening procedures, observations of program activities, and interviews with participants, employers, and program staff members. The project will also conduct a benefit-cost analysis across the subgrantees.
The WorkAdvance subgrantees are:
- Madison Strategies Group (Tulsa, OK)
- Towards Employment (Cleveland, OH)
- Per Scholas (New York City)
- St. Nicks Alliance (New York City)