A report from the national Benchmarking Project offers an unprecedented opportunity to examine the results of community-based organizations’ (CBOs) efforts to help jobseekers find and keep employment.
The Benchmarking Project launched in 2004 to understand what “good” performance looks like for different types of workforce development programs. The aggregate data from 332 programs in 200 organizations – mostly CBOs – represent the largest collection of outcomes information to date for programs serving America’s disadvantaged job seekers.
The report, Apples to Apples: Making Data Work for Community-based Workforce Development Programs, presents themes from analysis of the data and offers meaningful comparison groups for programs with different characteristics. While the data does not “prove” the effectiveness of any one approach, it can help funders, providers and other stakeholders set more realistic expectations for performance and make better-informed decisions about program design. The report also provides recommendations for how workforce funders can better support the use of data to improve results.
Public/Private Ventures (P/PV) launched The Benchmarking Project with funding from the Annie E. Casey Foundation to create resources for performance improvement that could be used by workforce providers and funders. With P/PV’s closing in 2012, The Benchmarking Project entered into partnership with Corporation for a Skilled Workforce (CSW).