Reemployment Programs


Lessons from the Employment Retention and Advancement (ERA) Project

April, 2012
Gayle Hamilton, Susan Scrivener

Many recipients of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and other low-income individuals find or keep jobs for a while, but far fewer remain steadily employed and advance in the labor market. This report describes results and draws lessons from rigorous evaluations of 12 programs seeking to improve employment retention and advancement among low-wage workers.

March, 2012
Gayle Hamilton

This policy brief, developed by the Urban Institute for the federal Administration for Children and Families, describes how strategies have helped welfare recipients enter employment and increase their earnings. However, more remains to be learned about how best to substantially increase their self-sufficiency and financial well-being.

Issue Focus

Will the Past Be Prologue?

November, 2009
Gordon Berlin

In remarks given at a conference sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration, MDRC President Gordon Berlin looks at the extraordinary challenges the current labor market presents to employment policy generally and WIA reauthorization specifically, outlines what we have (and haven’t) learned from research, and makes recommendations for future directions.


The Employment Retention and Advancement Project

August, 2008
Gilda Azurdia, Zakia Barnes

A program in Portland, Oregon, to remove employment barriers and assist with job placement and employment retention and advancement for welfare applicants and recipients was never fully implemented and, not surprisingly, had no any effects on employment, earnings, or receipt of public assistance.


The Employment Retention and Advancement Project

April, 2008

A program to promote better initial job placements, employment retention, and advancement among unemployed applicants to the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program faced implementation challenges and had no employment-related impacts after one year of follow-up.

Working Paper

Preliminary Analysis

March, 2009
David H. Greenberg, Johanna Walter, Genevieve Knight

This report presents a preliminary analysis of the cost of operating Britain’s Employment Retention and Advancement (ERA) demonstration, which is being evaluated though a large-scale randomised control trial. This assessment of costs will become an important element of the full cost-benefit analysis to be presented in future ERA reports.


Evidence from the UK Employment Retention and Advancement Demonstration

September, 2006
Lesley Hoggart, Verity Campbell-Barr, Kathryn Ray, Sandra Vegeris

This study for the UK Department for Work and Pensions explores the attitudes of a sample of participants in the UK Employment Retention and Advancement program. This rare employment study on low-paid workers in the United Kingdom offers a foundation for understanding the receptivity of low-paid workers to programs that help them remain employed and advance.