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III. b. 1. A. State operating systems that support coordinated implementation of State strategies (e.g., labor market information systems, data systems, communication systems, case-management systems, job banks, etc.)

Current Narrative:

WIOA emphasizes the importance of labor market and system performance information in driving strategic and operational decision-making within a state’s workforce development system. Idaho subscribes to this approach as it confirms data plays a key role in its strategic development and oversight processes.

System of Communication

To ensure ongoing alignment of WIOA programs and the state’s workforce development system, and to guide implementation of the Combined State Plan strategies and goals, Idaho’s Workforce Development Council utilizes numerous subcommittees and working groups, meeting regularly with a variety of groups to discuss state plan goals and priorities. Several of these groups, such as its standing One-Stop Committee and the WIOA Advisory Group, report to the WDC to assist in advancing the goals of the WDC. A brief description of each group follows:

  • The One-Stop Committee consists of the senior leadership level of core programs, combined plan partners and other stakeholders in Idaho’s workforce development system. The Committee, which develops policies for consideration by the WDC, communicates guidance and expectations on policy development and state strategies to Idaho’s American Job Centers and WIOA program staff across the state as well as engaging in discourse with the WDC on goal progress and decisions within their charter.
  • The WIOA Advisory Group is a hybrid working group with representation from all WIOA core programs, WDC staff, other combined plan partner programs, and stakeholders. This group consists of principal contributors towards the development of Idaho’s Combined State Plan and works to identify and align policy and planning with the WDC’s goals, all while meeting the regulatory requirements of WIOA.  Additionally, Advisory group members help to promote the alignment of these programs with the overall goals and strategies found in the Common Elements portion of Idaho’s WIOA Combined State Plan, communicating decisions and strategies with program leadership.

The WDC’s Executive Director serves as a member of these groups, acting as a primary liaison between the WDC and the working groups. Members of both the WIOA Advisory Group and the One-Stop Committee participated in a state plan strategic planning session and also participated in multiple public listening sessions held across the state. 

Data Systems

Idaho maintains a federated statewide longitudinal data system (SLDS) with several participating state agencies housing primarily educational data and incorporating a limited scope of workforce data by way of participant wage matching. These systems are currently designed to assist agencies in meeting their individual state and federal reporting requirements for program participants and allow analysis of individual wage outcomes.  Idaho’s federated model was adopted to align with the state’s data sharing culture and to address issues such as a state prohibition on permanently establishing a linkage between certain data. Under Idaho’s federated SLDS, each agency retains control of the personal information in its records and safeguards the data according to its own needs and requirements.

Through its Workforce Data Quality Initiative (WDQI) grant, the state has engaged its core WIOA programs to coalesce data sets for the purposes of program evaluations, outcomes reporting, and predictive analysis. Building upon the existing State Longitudinal Data System (SLDS), WDQI allows for data exchange between disparate MISs while maintaining appropriate data security and compliance requirements. Core program partners have come together to establish a shared data validation policy which incorporates procedures unique to each agency’s program design.  The project works on two fronts –interagency policy development and technical development – to assist Idaho’s core partners under WIOA in the exchange of data via a web-based portal for multiple federal reporting purposes. With core partners working together, Idaho leverages resources towards improved federal reporting, timely communication of achievements and enhanced performance outcomes.

IDOL’s IdahoWorks houses multiple workforce programs’ longitudinal datasets, including case management data for multiple programs (WIOA Titles I, III [Wagner-Peyser, Employment Services (ES)], and Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA)), and employment and wage records (inclusive of Unemployment Insurance (UI) wage and benefits data). IdahoWorks is a web-based, all-in-one labor exchange, reporting and case management solution; a data warehouse and multi-program management information system that collects program participants’ data.

The Office of the State Board of Education (OSBE) houses all K-20 data in the SLDS, with case management systems maintained at the WIOA agency level, for example, the Idaho Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (IDVR) utilizes one proprietary system (AWARE) and its sister agency, the Idaho Commission for the Blind and Visually Impaired (ICBVI) utilizes their own customized case management system (ORION). Through the SLDS, OSBE serves as a larger data conduit for public K-20 education (from kindergarten through post-graduate), Idaho Career Technical Education (ICTE), and IDVR.

Idaho’s segmented approach to data sharing allows each agency to retain control over the sensitive personal information in its records and safeguard data according to its own needs and requirements.  Idaho WIOA partners maintain separate data systems because each partner has invested significant funds, time, training, and other resources into each of their existing programmatic management information systems, built to meet agency/program designs consistent with WIOA reporting elements The state’s approach with the WDQI project incorporates these concerns, working within the federated system rather than against it, ensuring a better fit for Idaho.

This effort will do much to improve the state’s ability to automate data exchange processes within Idaho’s workforce development system.   Additionally, this data will feed into IDOL’s Labor Market Information (LMI) tool known as JobScape. JobScape is an easy-to-use, mobile-friendly career and educational training search tool that provides occupation descriptions, wages, worker demand, current employment, and the number of certificates and degrees awarded from Idaho’s public postsecondary for-credit programs. Users, Idaho students, and job seekers, can search by keywords, occupation/job titles, military occupation titles or codes, or commonly used job title acronyms. JobScape enhancements would include non-credit program and aggregate ETP participant rates of wages, employment, graduation/program completion, and credential attainment. With this easily accessible data, customers can make more informed career and educational training decisions.

Currently, the core programs under WIOA use several different Management Information Systems (MISs) to collect and report data for program management, case management, and federal reporting purposes, eventually feeding into its WDQI project. These systems, and the applicable agencies and programs that use them, are:

MISAgency    (WIOA Title)Function
Aware – Alliance Enterprise IncorporatedIdaho Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (Title IV)Primary case and information management system
ORION Idaho Commission for the Blind and Visually Impaired (Title IV)Primary case and information management system
LACES (Literacy, Adult, and Community Education System)Adult Education, via Idaho Division of Career-Technical Education (Title II)Information management system
IdahoWorks – America’s Job Link Alliance

iUS - Internet Unemployment System
Idaho Department of Labor (Title I-B, Title III & Unemployment Insurance-Combined Plan Partner)Primary case and information management system for Titles I-B & III; MIS for Veterans’ and TAA programs. Labor exchange system for job seekers and employers. 

Used by unemployment insurance claimants to determine eligibility and file claims, and by staff to process and track claims. 
SPARQ & Web Data Collection System (WDCS)Idaho Senior Community Service Employment Program – Combined Plan PartnerPrimary case and information management system

As specified in Section (III)(b)(6) of this State Combined Plan, Idaho will continue to use these existing systems as the core infrastructure for our data collection and reporting processes under WIOA. Please refer to that section for more information regarding our plans for linking and integrating these systems.