Improving Skills Through America’s Workforce Development System

To address labor market challenges, many have turned to America’s workforce development system. Recent efforts from Congress and the White House confirm that policymakers are serious about expanding job-training opportunities. But even with the heightened focus, a shockingly small percentage of individuals leveraging the workforce system combine available Department of Labor training funds with money from other federal and state programs—despite that many more might qualify for additional aid. Incongruent bureaucratic processes commonly inhibit the effectiveness of workforce training, and policy requirements are not clearly communicated to training seekers, financial aid administrators, and private entities.

If the goal is to increase the number of job seekers that participate in high-quality training programs, more can be done to improve the coordination between the Department of Labor and these groups. This report, from the American Enterprise Institute, offers recommendations for enhancing the federal workforce development system by reviewing and identifying inefficiencies in the current system. It concludes by forwarding several policy suggestions aimed at improving the way that Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act funding is used by job seekers and training providers.

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