Daily Rules, Proposed Rules, and Notices of the Federal Government
The OMB is particularly interested in comments which:
* Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility;
* Evaluate the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used;
* Enhance the quality, utility, and clarify of the information to be collected; and
* Minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submissions of responses.
The U.S. Department of Labor's (DOL) Employment and Training Administration (ETA), in conjunction with the White House and IdeaScale, is launching the Jobs for America's Job Seekers Challenge. Using an online platform designed by IdeaScale, the Challenge will allow toolmakers and developers to present their free online job tools to workforce development experts and jobseekers for discussion, rating, and voting. The tools that receive the most votes will be shared broadly with the workforce investment system and jobseekers, and listed on government Web sites like
The Challenge will consist of three phases. Phase 1 will run from November 30, 2009 to December 18, 2009. In this phase, toolmakers and developers will submit information on their free online job search and job matching tools. These tools must be free to the job seeker, but can be licensed by the workforce system at the State or local level provided the companies offer a short-term demo or other platform that allows the tools to be reviewed free of charge. Submissions will be accepted from businesses, nonprofits organizations, entrepreneurs, and State and local workforce agencies. The tools will be organized into one or more of the following categories:
* General job boards, listing sites, and aggregators
* Niche job boards
* Career advancement tools
* Web based career exploration sites
* Web 2.0/social media sites specializing in job searches or job postings
* Other job tools
Phase 2 will run from January 4 to January 15, 2010. During this phase, workforce development experts and job seekers will review and vote on the submitted job search and matching tools. Reviewers will be encouraged to consider a tool's usability based on how effective the tool is in providing accurate results, how efficient it is in completing job search and matching tasks in a reasonable amount of time, and the level of satisfaction the user felt.
Phase 3 will begin on January 18, 2010. In this final phase, DOL, ETA, and the White House will communicate the top tools in each category with the entire workforce development community and job seekers through a variety of mediums, including:
(1) Posting an announcement of the top ranking tools on key Web sites including;
c. White House OSTP blog
e. Other sites
(2) Highlighting free tools on ETA's
(3) Hosting Webinars featuring the top ranking tools on Workforce3one.org;
(4) Utilizing other communication outlets such as national associations and Intergovernmental organizations like the National Association of State Workforce Agencies, the National Association of Workforce Boards, the National Governor's Association, the National Association of Counties, and the Association of Community Colleges.
As a result of the Challenge, the workforce development system will quickly boost its capacity to meet the job information needs of the significantly increased number of customers requiring service in the current economic recovery effort.
In today's tight employment market that has experienced a 10.2 percent unemployment rate that is the highest in 26 years, the publicly funded workforce investment system has a major responsibility to maximize unemployed workers' opportunities for rapid reemployment by quickly connecting them to the full scope of available jobs. We know the workforce system is working hard to connect workforce system customers to the best job search resources available. However, as a result of technological innovations, new job search tools have been launched and new tools are emerging daily that help job seekers find jobs and target their search to the most relevant employment opportunities.
Expedited or Emergency approval of this data collection will enable the Department of Labor (DOL), Employment and Training Administration (ETA), and the White House to respond aggressively to the record unemployment rates. Failure to start the Challenge and do the collection by November 30, 2009 would waste federal Recovery Act and State resources. Many States and local areas are individually searching for job matching and job search solutions to meet the significantly increased number of job seekers in need of assistance in One Stop Career Centers nationwide as a result of the historic downturn in the nation's economy.