Federal Workforce Data Quality Initiative (WDQI) - Phase II (2014-2018)
Obtained and managed state administrative data files to support data analyses for the State of New Jersey.
For over a decade, the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development (NJLWD) has contracted with the Heldrich Center to maintain the Workforce Longitudinal Data System (WLDS), which, in 2017, was expanded and renamed the New Jersey Education to Earning Data System. In 2014, NJLWD was awarded a second grant from the U.S. Department of Labor under the Workforce Data Quality Initiative (federal WDQI) to support further research and analysis of data maintained in NJLWD’s WLDS. During the period 2015-2018 (the federal grant concludes June 30, 2018), the Heldrich Center has been working with NJLWD, in partnership with the NJEEDS initiative, to expand data in NJEEDS from a variety of NJLWD data systems, including adding Unemployment Insurance claims data, LACES, and AWARE, and to conduct research and performance reporting projects.
The Heldrich Center used the WLDS/NJEEDS data to calculate consumer scorecards for students entering postsecondary education, calculate customer profiles of individuals served by various workforce programs serving disadvantaged populations, and worked with NJLWD and the New Jersey State Employment and Training Commission to develop performance metrics dashboards for various programs and populations. Building on work from the first phase of WDQI, Heldrich Center researchers completed six additional tasks during this grant period. These tasks included plans to better use the data systems to enhance program evaluation and support to job seekers. It also included an analysis of the Statistical Adjustment Model to establish and negotiate performance goals, a study on how to enhance the New Jersey Worker Profile and Reemployment Services for Unemployment Insurance claimants and how to extend the model to other populations such as One-Stop participants, a report on the performance metrics and data collection recommendations for non-One-Stop providers, a study on "light touch" targeted messaging to Unemployment Insurance claimants with a proposed research design, and a retrospective narrative on the experience, successes, and lessons learned from the New Jersey WDQI initiative.