Standards for public agencies

2020 Edition

Workforce Development and Support Services (PA-WDS) 4: Assessment-Based Employment Planning and Monitoring

Each job seeker participates in the development and ongoing review of an assessment-based employment plan.
2020 Edition




Job seekers who receive workforce development, support, and financial asset building services achieve increased economic self-sufficiency.
Full Implementation, Outstanding Performance
A rating of (1) indicates that the agency's practices fully meet the standard and reflect a high level of capacity.  
  • All elements or requirements outlined in the standard are evident in practice, with rare or no exceptions: exceptions do not impact service quality or agency performance. 
Substantial Implementation, Good Performance
A rating of (2) indicates that an agency's infrastructure and practices are basically sound but there is room for improvement.
  • The majority of the standards requirements have been met and the basic framework required by the standard has been implemented. 
  • Minor inconsistencies and not yet fully developed practices are noted; however, these do not significantly impact service quality or agency performance.

Partial Implementation, Concerning Performance
A rating of (3) indicates that the agency's observed infrastructure and/or practices require significant improvement.  

  • The agency has not implemented the basic framework of the standard but instead has in place only part of this framework.  
  • Omissions or exceptions to the practices outlined in the standard occur regularly, or practices are implemented in a cursory or haphazard manner.  
  • Service quality or agency functioning may be compromised.  
  • Capacity is at a basic level.
Unsatisfactory Implementation or Performance
A rating of (4) indicates that implementation of the standard is minimal or there is no evidence of implementation at all.  
  • The agency’s observed service delivery infrastructure and practices are weak or non-existent; or show signs of neglect, stagnation, or deterioration.
Self-Study EvidenceOn-Site EvidenceOn-Site Activities
  • Assessment procedures
  • Copy of assessment tool(s)
  • Employment planning and monitoring procedures
No On-Site Evidence
  • Interviews may include:
    1. Program director
    2. Relevant personnel
    3. Job seekers
  • Review case records


PA-WDS 4.01

Job seekers participate in an assessment that is:
  1. individualized;
  2. culturally and linguistically responsive; and
  3. completed within established timeframes.


PA-WDS 4.02

Assessments identify the job seeker’s:
  1. previous formal and informal work experience;
  2. relevant life experience;
  3. interests, aptitudes, and employment goals;
  4. training and educational needs;
  5. strengths and coping strategies;
  6. informal support networks; and
  7. barriers to employment and job retention.


PA-WDS 4.03

The agency works with the job seeker to develop and regularly review an assessment-based employment plan that includes: 
  1. agreed upon goals, desired outcomes, and timeframes for achieving them;
  2. services and supports to be provided, and by whom;
  3. the individual’s signature; and
  4. revisions to service goals and plans when needed.


PA-WDS 4.04

The agency works in active partnership with job seekers to: 
  1. assume a service coordination role, as appropriate, when the need has been identified and no other agency has assumed that responsibility;
  2. ensure that they receive appropriate advocacy support;
  3. assist with access to the full array of services to which they are eligible; and
  4. mediate barriers to services within the service delivery system.