About WorkFirst Handbook

WorkFirst has Six Main Performance Goals

  • Reduce the TANF caseload
  • Increase the number of participants in unsubsidized jobs.
  • Increase the percentage of participants with earnings.
  • Increase the earnings of participants.
  • Reduce TANF returns.
  • Increase child support collections.

Participant Flow Chart

There are various stages a participant might go through to become independent of TANF. The process begins with an application for TANF cash aid and ends with a successful exit from the TANF program using job retention and wage and skill progression strategies for lasting gains. The interim steps include activities (like job search) and processes (like evaluation and helping the participant develop an IRP) that will help them meet their goals.

Not every participant goes through every stage. Our experience shows that people can find jobs and independence at any step in the process. This handbook has information about every stage in the program.

WorkFirst Partner Roles

The WorkFirst program mandates a new level of coordination between state agencies, tribal governments, and other key local area partners. Each WorkFirst partner has an important role to play and areas of expertise to contribute in helping participants achieve self-sufficiency.

You can find a link to a list of key WorkFirst partners and a description of the role they each play in the title of this section.

Local Area Planning

The WorkFirst program also instituted a formal process to coordinate between the state agencies and other WorkFirst partners. This process is called local area planning.

Washington State has been divided into local area planning groups. WorkFirst partners within each local area are held jointly accountable to work together and meet local area WorkFirst performance goals and targets. Each area's progress is measured and reported on a monthly basis.

We have included a link to the local area planning web page in the title of this section. If you visit this site you will find more information about local area planning groups and the monthly reports on their progress in meeting major WorkFirst targets and goals.