Michigan Workforce Longitudinal Data System Logo

In 2012, Michigan was awarded U.S. Department of Labor Employment & Training Administration funds to create a connection between workforce data and Michigan’s existing educational State Longitudinal Data System. The resulting Workforce Longitudinal Data System (WLDS) allowed Michigan to connect and evaluate educational and workforce data. Michigan’s Talent Investment Agency received a second grant award in 2015 which added partner agencies and their data to provide longitudinal results for a larger population for our stakeholders.

The WLDS partners with the Michigan Department of Education, Center for Educational Performance and Information, the Department of Technology, Management and Budget’s Bureau of Labor Market Information and Strategic Initiatives, and Unemployment Insurance to merge information from separate systems to provide essential aggregate data to Michigan’s stakeholders, including students/parents, teachers, legislators, workforce and education policymakers, taxpayers and employers.

The linkage of database records allows analysis of the relationship between education and training programs, the provision of employment services, and employment within Michigan. The enhanced data can be used to make informed decisions about training and education, policy, and programming to improve our return on investment.

Data from the yearly system linkages by the WLDS is available on the MI School Data website under Workforce and the newly released outcomes for Career and Technical Education.

The most comprehensive display of connection results is Pathfinder, Michigan's online career exploration tool. Data from education and employment outcomes are matched to provide outcome data for schools and field of study choices, and integrates data from College Scorecard, Michigan Community College Network, Center for Educational Performance and Information, Michigan Department of Education- Career and Technical Education, Pure Michigan Talent Connect and Michigan Training Connect.

Data provided directly from the WLDS connection include:

  • Typical Time from Completion to Employment
  • Employment for those not continuing Education (Year 1 and 5)
  • Median Salary (Year 1 and 5)
  • Enrolled in Post-Secondary Education (Year 1 and 5)
  • Employed in Michigan (Year 1 and 5)
  • Return on Investment

The One Stop Management Information System used by Michigan Works! agencies and Michigan Training Connect will benefit as the State Eligible Training Provider system is updated to meet new USDOL requirements, and annual reports by institution will need to be submitted by our systems. States are required to provide training employment data to reduce burden on providers, and WLDS linkages will be utilized to provide the data required.

Michigan has also partnered with Credential Engine to capture the Michigan credential marketplace to empower everyone looking for education and training options with the data they need to make well-informed decisions, enable employers to better evaluate the value of a credential’s ability to meet business needs, and allow organizations that service students, workers, employers and other stakeholders to provide clearer information about the value of various credentials. Michigan will utilize the data provided to improve their data systems, allow clearer communication between job seekers and employers and training institutions, as well as communicate apprenticeship opportunities and career pathways.