The General Assembly requested that CASE identify strategies for evaluating the effectiveness of programs and resources for assuring Connecticut’s workforce meets the needs of business and industry today and in the future. They wanted to understand the current alignment landscape, to evaluate the progress made since the 2009 PRI benchmark report, and to propose recommendations that effectively leverage the resources that are already in place in Connecticut as well as possibly develop new tools for evaluation. CASE commissioned CERC to staff the research team to create and carry out the work scope on behalf of the CASE Study Committee.
CERC’s research method consisted of the following:
- Utilize the Program Review and Investigations (PRI) report as a baseline of alignment efforts in Connecticut
- Review education, workforce development and economic development strategic documents for alignment goals
- Examine outcomes from federal programs that focus on the workforce
- Describe the current alignment efforts in Connecticut
- Evaluate the alignment progress into Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) occupations
- Identify state best practices that can serve as models for Connecticut
- Conduct focus groups with key organizations and state agencies
The resulting study emphasized that the state’s workforce system is complex requiring coordination, collaboration, and continuous review and improvement of programs and initiatives provided by many state agencies and others (many with principal missions not specifically focused on workforce issues) in order to meet the changing needs of business and industry, and the state’s residents. The key findings and recommendations were presented at a briefing conducted for the Higher Education and Employment Advancement Committee of the General Assembly.
The report can be found online at www.case.org.