TANF Works! TANF/WIOA Collaboration Series
The Office of Family Assistance’s Integrating Innovative Employment and Economic Stability Strategies (IIEESS) initiative developed the following TANF Works! TANF/WIOA Collaboration series of briefs, which describes promising collaboration strategies between Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) programs to serve low-income or vulnerable populations. Gathered through conversations with TANF agencies and their workforce and education partners in 19 locations across nine states, the 14 briefs identify practices that can be scaled or adapted by TANF programs.
Leadership and frontline staff in Adams and Jefferson Counties are making intentional changes to coordinate employment services for TANF and WIOA clients within their respective counties. This brief highlights joint TANF-WIOA efforts in each site, including the alignment of job readiness workshop content, the development of shared tools for tracking clients’ job placement, and cross-funded opportunities for both TANF and non-TANF clients (e.g., Adams County’s diversion program and Jefferson County’s information technology job training program).
This case statement highlights the American Job Center in Central Pennsylvania (PA CareerLink®), which provides employment services to TANF (through the Employment Advancement Retention Network or EARN) and WIOA clients. With support from specialized staff at each step of the job seeking process, clients can access Job Connections workshops, assistance from job developers, and employer engagement opportunities. This PA CareerLink® also offers adult basic education services and a designated van to provide transportation assistance, among other services, for EARN clients.
This brief describes the strong collaborative culture among TANF and WIOA programs at the Larimer County Economic and Workforce Development (LCEWD) in Colorado. This American Job Center’s strategies to coordinate service delivery include targeted co-enrollments in TANF and WIOA, cross-program teams to organize work-based learning opportunities, and communication platforms to discuss shared customers. Leadership has also formalized collaboration with intentional hiring practices, management teams, and a shared mission.
This brief highlights the collaboration among Mesa County Workforce Center partners to deliver case management and workforce services to TANF and non-TANF clients, under the umbrella of a “Career Development Program.” The Workforce Center has structured its TANF-funded Colorado Works Subsidized Training and Employment Program (CW STEP) to mirror WIOA and provide more employment services to clients.
The Missouri Job Centers in Kansas City and Vicinity and the Greater St. Louis Metropolitan Region provide a variety of services for TANF customers through Missouri Works Assistance (MWA). This case statement describes collaborative practices among TANF and WIOA agencies contracted to deliver MWA services, such as sharing resources, case management, specialized staffing, and communication channels across programs. State-level support and a history of cross-agency collaboration also encourage partnership-building in this region.
This case statement highlights the American Job Center and its WIOA affiliates (called WorkSource) in the Pacific Mountain Workforce Region of Washington (PacMtn). In collaboration with state agencies and community partners, WorkSource offers three program tracks—work ready, work support, and education—to TANF customers based on their level of work readiness. Program staff also take a client-centered, integrated service delivery approach to address the needs of high-barrier customers.
The Anoka County Job Training Center is the only WIOA job center serving the county. It houses all public assistance programs, including TANF (called the Minnesota Family Investment Program), on-site WIOA partners, and child care services in the same building. As described in this brief, the Center has implemented strategies to streamline service delivery and co-enrollment among these programs, including a universal program application, a team of intake and eligibility specialists, and cross-program practices for adapting resources to meet client needs.
This case statement describes the American Job Centers in Central Arkansas (called Arkansas Workforce Centers). Strategies to coordinate cash assistance and employment services for TANF recipients and job seekers include in-house referrals between TANF and WIOA, the development of a new integrated data system (ARWINS) to track participant outcomes, and information sharing among program staff.
The American Job Centers in Pennsylvania (called PA CareerLink®) offer workforce services to TANF clients through the Employment Advancement Retention Network (EARN). As described in this brief, the PA CareerLink® in Lehigh Valley has developed a strong team-based culture, with staff organized by function instead of by program. This structure helps clients navigate the job center and encourages programs to exchange ideas, expertise, and data.
Maryland’s Lower Eastern Shore job center and its partners have streamlined TANF and WIOA assessment and referral processes, as well as sharing staff, spaces, and resources across programs, to improve service delivery to TANF customers. Job center partners aim to match job seekers with employers through opportunities such as a “reverse job fair,” a job search database, and a regional job developer to specifically work with customers.