Preparing for the BEST focuses on one element of a good job: sufficient and adequate income. This guide can provide an accurate picture of what wage level will enable a family to meet all of its expenses. Not all jobs offer workers this level of income. Instead, finding an occupation with family-supporting wages requires long-term career planning, entering into jobs with upward career pathways, and building the skills, accreditations, and education required for advancement.
This guide provides an overview of resources developed by WOW to help frontline staff and directors of workforce development organizations support low-income individuals. It introduces the Basic Economic Security Tables Index, a database that measures the resources needed for economic security while accounting for family size and location. This is accompanied by an overview of how training programs can use the BEST Index in recruitment and program design. The guide also outlines recommendations for programs to develop two curricula:
- An economic security, professional development curriculum targeted to case managers in the workforce system; and
- A financial and career literacy program for workforce training participants.