Career development and LMI

Current and Completed Projects:

S.U.C.C.E.S.S. Connecting Arabic-speaking Refugees to Employers (C.A.R.E.) in the Hospitality Sector Project

This pilot in Surrey, British Columbia is using the behavioural economics concept of “nudging” in order to understand the behaviours and choices of small business employers in the hospitality sector towards recruiting and hiring Privately Sponsored and Government Assisted refugees.

Start-end date: September 2017 - March 2018
Sponsor: S.U.C.C.E.S.S.

A review of the evaluation strategy and framework for the Royal Bank of Canada's Future Launch initiative

In November 2017, RBC will introduce Future Launch, a $500 million, ten-year commitment to the development of innovative programs and supports that will help prepare young people (aged 15-29) for the future of work. SRDC is providing support to the RBC evaluation team with the development of their evaluation framework, data collection strategy, and analytic approach for the Future Launch initiative.

Start-end date: September 2017 - October 2017
Sponsor: Royal Bank of Canada

High School Student and Parent Perceptions of OSAP

This project examines the relationship between aspirations towards postsecondary education and students/parents’ perception and knowledge of the Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP). The project administers surveys before and after students’ compulsory Grade 10 career studies class, and tracks postsecondary access and student financial aid use over four years, to evaluate provision of new interventions including information on OSAP and the likely actual costs and benefits of postsecondary education. The evaluation framework involves a clustered randomized trial.

Start-end date: August 2017 - September 2021
Sponsor: Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario

Developing Provincial/Territorial Capacity for Innovation in Employment and Training Services

Following a Fall 2016 Best Practices session convened for the Forum of Labour Market Ministers (FLMM), SRDC is meeting with provincial and territorial labour market officials to share knowledge about labour market programming. The meetings, which include presentations highlighting innovation in the design and delivery of programs, aim to identify opportunities to promote innovation through learning exchange and collaboration among jurisdictions.

Start-end date: April 2017 - March 2018
Sponsor: Employment and Social Development Canada

Life After High School Ontario – Phase III

The purpose of Life After High School is to improve the rates at which high school students transition to post-secondary education by reducing the non-financial and financial barriers students face. The program applies lessons from behavioural economics to provide all Grade 12 students at selected Ontario secondary schools with practical support applying for post-secondary education and financial aid. Students are guided through online tools and video in the process of selecting a post-secondary program of their choice, applying for a place in that program without incurring a fee, and applying for financial aid. As options are considered for the delivery of a streamlined Life After High School program in Ontario in future years, SRDC is running the program in 69 low-transition schools in 2016-17.

Start-end date: September 2016 - June 2017
Sponsor: Ontario Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development

Forum of Labour Market Ministers' Senior Officials – Best Practices Session

SRDC was responsible for organizing a half-day session to share innovative approaches, lessons learned, and research and evaluation on labour market programs and service delivery strategies. It featured presentations from a number of jurisdictions on recent projects and initiatives to identify best practices, improve program effectiveness, and foster innovation. SRDC staff presented on three SRDC projects in this area, teaming up with provincial Senior Officials who provided context on how the projects respond to their respective program and policy objectives. SRDC was also responsible for producing an Event Report summarizing the discussion.

Start-end date: September 2016 - September 2016
Sponsor: Employment and Social Development Canada

Labour Market Transfer Agreements summary report

Employment and skills training programming and services in Canada are supported and delivered by federal, provincial, and territorial governments. The federal government provides almost $3 billion annually to provinces and territories through four major bilateral transfer agreements to support training and employment programming for Canadians. The design and delivery of the programs and services funded under these agreements are the responsibility of provinces and territories. This includes programs and services for unemployed workers eligible for Employment Insurance (EI), individuals without recent or sustained labour market attachment (non-EI insured), low-skilled workers, employers, persons with disabilities, and older workers. The 2016 Federal Budget announced new investments for 2016-17 totaling an additional $175 million. This is the first step in a plan to boost support for skills and training through the transfer agreements. To further ensure that these agreements continue to be relevant, flexible, and responsive to new and emerging labour market needs and priorities, the federal, provincial, and territorial governments have collaboratively embarked on a process in the summer 2016 to gather stakeholder input on these important investments. SRDC summarizes the outcomes of the consultations related to the labour market agreements renewal in this report.

Start-end date: August 2016 - September 2016
Sponsor: Ministère du Travail, de l’Emploi et de la Solidarité sociale du Québec

BuildForce Labour Market Information (LMI) study

On behalf of BuildForce Canada, the national construction sector council, SRDC conducted an evaluation of the Labour Market Information (LMI) products that currently support the construction sector. The cornerstone of their LMI program is a demand and supply model, which is used to provide forecasts of both construction investment and labour market demand for skilled trades. This study explores how employers, tradespeople, and other stakeholders such as training institutions currently access, utilize, and value BuildForce Canada’s products. The design included a series of key informant interviews with stakeholders and a regional survey of users of construction sector LMI.

Start-end date: April 2016 - December 2016
Sponsor: BuildForce Canada

The long-term impacts of offering enhanced career education to Manitoba high school students

This project extends analysis of the impacts of offering Future to Discover (FTD) enhanced career education on Manitoba high school students. While FTD reports to date have covered the 2005 to 2010 period for Manitoba, this extension permits analysis of impacts on later education and labour market participation through to the end of 2014 when the participants were in their mid-twenties. The study examines impacts on education and earnings using tax records that capture outcomes for all 1,044 participants regardless of whether the participants still reside in Manitoba.

Start-end date: February 2016 - October 2017
Sponsor: Manitoba Department of Education and Training

Learning and Labour Market Information Symposium

SRDC organized a learning and labour market information (LLMI) symposium in May 2016 to engage Federal/Provincial and Territorial government senior officials in a discussion with subject matter experts on ways and means to improve the availability and quality of data and tools to inform student choice. In addition to planning the agenda and facilitating the symposium, SRDC conducted an environmental scan, and prepared a synthesis document for circulation prior to the event.

Start-end date: December 2015 - June 2016
Sponsor: Employment and Social Development Canada + Ontario Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities

Demonstrating an enriched Kocihta eMentoring Program Model – A Design/Development Phase

The first phase of a project to tackle one of Canada’s major policy problems: too few Indigenous youth achieving successful transition into the labour market. SRDC is working with Kocihta - a national Indigenous charity founded in 2013 by the Aboriginal Human Resource Council - to develop and test an innovative program model. The model bridges career education to eMentoring with the intent to encourage Indigenous youths to identify and pursue their desired career paths, thereby enhancing their educational investments and improving their labour market outcomes. This phase of the project involves designing an enriched eMentoring program model and developing a comprehensive, detailed implementation and evaluation plan for Phase 2. The main ‘developmental’ activities include: continuing discussions with potential collaborators; developing the intervention/delivery model; finalizing the conceptual evaluation framework; developing the evaluation plan, feasibility and market research for low-cost delivery of eMentoring; and identifying potential funders for a subsequent demonstration project.

Start-end date: April 2015 - May 2016
Sponsor: Carthy Foundation

How youth develop career decisions

Making use of existing literature from Canada and abroad, this study examines when, where and how youth use labour market information to make postsecondary education and career-related decisions, including recommendations for the development and refinement of labour market information tools and initiatives. The report includes design considerations, critical features and strategies including those to adopt and those to avoid.

Start-end date: February 2015 - March 2015
Sponsor: Employment and Social Development Canada

Mentoring Partnerships Pilot for BC Career Development Practitioners

The Centre, in partnership with the BC Career Development Association (BCCDA) and SkillPlan, is testing a new pilot project that examines the role that a structured mentorship program can play in supporting career development practitioners in BC. During the pilot, practitioners have the opportunity to form mentoring partnerships around specific topic areas where they are looking for – or offering – support and guidance, which could include serving clients with particular needs and barriers, pursuing skills upgrading or other professional development opportunities, or training in the latest software or information and communications technologies. All mentors and mentees are provided orientation and training on effective mentoring skills and strategies based on SkillPlan’s established mentorship framework, and participants will be given the opportunity to fill the role of mentors or mentees on topics of their choosing. The BC Centre for Employment Excellence is conducting a formal evaluation of the mentorship program to determine its effectiveness in supporting the professional development needs of CDPs as well as its role in equipping practitioners to provide services and supports to BC job seekers. This project is managed by the BC Centre for Employment Excellence, a division of SRDC.

Start-end date: December 2014 - May 2017
Sponsor: British Columbia Ministry of Social Development and Social Innovation

Evaluation of Social Finance Pilots

SRDC is conducting an evaluation of two pilot projects for Essential Skills training based on performance-based funding models. The Skilling UP pilot is led by Alberta Workforce Essential Skills, providing workplace essential skills training to lower-skilled workers in the manufacturing sector. Employers pay up-front for the training, and are reimbursed up to 50% of their investment if their workers achieve targeted skill gains. The second project is a social impact bond (SIB), in which private investors pay up-front for essential skills training for low-skilled unemployed persons, and are repaid their capital plus interest if participants achieve skill gains. Colleges and Institutes Canada is the intermediary for this Essential Skills Social Finance (ESSF) social impact bond, with three College delivery partners: Douglas College, Confederation College, and Sask Polytech. In addition to serving as proof-of-concept of the implementation of the two models, the pilot evaluations are measuring a range of outcomes of interest including skill gains, and indicators of employability and performance measurement.

Start-end date: January 2014 - December 2018
Sponsor: Employment and Social Development Canada

Skills Bridge essential skills pilot project in BC

Skills Bridge offers Essential Skills training with the aim of ensuring that participants in academic, trades training, and apprenticeship programs emerge fully ready for employment. The pilot project is an outcome evaluation of a system of Essential Skills coaching at three sites – Douglas College, North Island College, and SkillPlan. The performance measures include Essential Skills learning gains, student engagement, and grades. The study develops an evaluation framework and survey instruments, and includes a cost-effectiveness analysis. Implementation of Skills Bridge at the three pilot sites informs a larger consortium of educational institutions implementing Essential Skills training for their students. SRDC is a research partner in the pilot project funded by the participating colleges and industry training institutions.

Start-end date: September 2013 - April 2014
Sponsor: DataAngel Policy Research Inc.

Inter-Organizational Career Development Framework and Pilot Deliveries for B.C.'s Non-Profit Sector

This project is designed to produce a career development framework and series of pilots to support the human resource needs of the British Columbia non-profit sector.

Start-end date: July 2013 - March 2014
Sponsor: Vancouver Foundation – Non-Profit Sector Labour Market Partnership Project

The Foundations Pilot Project

This project is a three-year initiative led by the Training Group at Douglas College, British Columbia. It tests: a) whether a skill assessment and upgrading program delivery model targeted specifically to meet the needs of low-skilled job seekers can be successfully implemented across several sites nationally, and b) what impacts the program may have on a variety of outcomes, such as participation in college-level training, employment, and labour market advancement. Approximately 500 job seekers were recruited, half of whom were randomly assigned to receive program services while the other half served as a control group. The study includes an evaluation framework and research design, as well as implementation, impact, and cost-benefit analyses.

Start-end date: July 2013 - June 2016
Sponsor: Training Group at Douglas College

Design for Evaluating an Online Career Development Services Intervention

A study assessing the feasibility of using a random assignment design for the evaluation of the delivery of a Web-based comprehensive Career Development Services (CDS) intervention that can improve the career development of older workers and recent immigrants, enabling them to make meaningful and effective decisions in relation to the labour market and to take action on those decisions.

Start-end date: September 2011 - November 2011
Sponsor: Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

Career Development Services (CDS) – Field Consultations with Canadian Practitioners

A consultative study to identify gaps in services and explore innovative practices in the delivery of employment counselling and training for unemployed lower-skilled Canadian adults. Consultations include focus groups and depth interviews with practitioners involved in the intake, assessment, and referral of unemployed clients as well as training providers in four provinces: Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, and Nova Scotia.

Start-end date: December 2010 - March 2011
Sponsor: Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

Citizen-centric Information System

The organization of a one-day seminar that brings together external experts, as well as experts from Statistics Canada and HRSDC, to discuss and validate a proposal on a new citizen-centric information system. The work consists of organizing and facilitating the seminar in early 2011 as well as preparing a final report that summarizes the discussion and incorporates relevant literature and examples of best practices of similar initiatives in Canada and abroad.

Start-end date: October 2010 - May 2011
Sponsor: Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

Impact of Lowering Non-financial Barriers on Access to Post-secondary Education (Life After High School)

The project aims to develop, implement, and test an intervention to find new ways to lower non-financial barriers on access to post-secondary education. The intervention targets British Columbia high schools with low rates of students entering post-secondary education. A sequence of three workshops delivered to the schools’ Grade 12 students have the intent of encouraging the students to apply for post-secondary education and related student financial aid.

Start-end date: March 2010 - March 2013
Sponsor: Human Resources and Skills Development Canada + Carthy Foundation

Design of a Demonstration Project to Evaluate the Impact of Providing Labour Market Information to Internationally-trained Immigrants

A study assessing the feasibility of using random assignment designs to explore options to improve labour market outcomes for internationally-trained immigrants through different means of LMI delivery.

Start-end date: March 2009 - June 2009
Sponsor: Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

Labour Market Information to Help High-School Students Access Post-secondary Education: The “Life After High School Experiment”

Concept paper to assess whether the process of providing information to high-school students about labour markets, their post-secondary options, potential post-secondary program acceptance, and eligibility for financial aid can improve knowledge acquisition and human capital acquisition.

Start-end date: March 2009 - May 2009
Sponsor: Human Resources and Skills Development Canada (Policy Research)

CareerMotion

The evaluation of a demonstration project to provide reliable evidence on whether the labour market competencies of recent graduates from colleges and universities can be improved by providing them with job search and career planning tools that are tailored to their needs.

Start-end date: December 2008 - November 2011
Sponsor: Human Resources and Skills Development Canada
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Design of Possible Demonstration Projects to Assess the Impact of Labour Market Information

A study assessing the feasibility of using random assignment designs to explore options to improve labour market outcomes of three target groups (new immigrants, youth at risk, and small- and medium-size businesses) through the provision of labour market information tailored to their needs.

Start-end date: January 2008 - March 2008
Sponsor: Human Resources and Social Development Canada

Navigating the Labour Market

A short-term classroom economic experiment to probe the relationship between literacy and labour market knowledge, and to assess the impact of a short labour market information intervention on labour market knowledge.

Start-end date: January 2008 - July 2008
Sponsor: Human Resources and Social Development Canada

HRSDC Symposium on “Measuring the Impact of LMI”

Facilitation of the symposium and writing of the Symposium final synthesis report.

Start-end date: July 2007 - September 2007
Sponsor: Human Resources and Social Development Canada

Future to Discover Pilot Project (FTD)

The evaluation of a demonstration project involving 5,400 high-school students in New Brunswick and Manitoba that is testing, through a randomized trial, an alternative form of financial support and enhanced career education as ways to increase youth participation in post-secondary education, especially youth from low-income families. To date, SRDC has published the Future to Discover Pilot Project: Early Implementation Report (2007), Future to Discover: Interim Impacts Report (2009), Future to Discover: Post-secondary Impacts Report (2012), Future to Discover: Fourth Year Post-secondary Impacts Report (2014), Future to Discover: Fifth Year Post-secondary Impacts Report (2016), and Future to Discover: Sixth Year Post-secondary Impacts Report (2016).

Start-end date: August 2003 - December 2013
Sponsor: Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation
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Facilitation of a “Sounding Board” on Youth Labour Market Indicators/Evaluation for YES Strategic Policy Development

Start-end date: April 2002 - May 2002
Sponsor: Human Resources Development Canada, Employment Policy (Labour Market Policy)