Evaluation summary: Workforce Development Agreements (WDAs)

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Evaluation summary: Workforce Development Agreements (WDAs) [PDF - 195 KB]

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Program objectives

The Workforce Development Agreements (WDAs) are a key mechanism to provide training and employment supports to Canadians. Under these bilateral agreements between the federal government and individual provinces and territories, financial support is provided for the design and delivery of programs and services to support individuals and employers.

The agreements aim to help participants get the training, skills, and work experience they need to improve their labour market outcomes. They include targeted funding for persons with disabilities as well as funding that can be used to serve members of other groups who are underrepresented in the labour market. The WDAs also allow for the provision of support to employers seeking to train employees.

Evaluation objectives

The evaluation had 4 main objectives:

The WDA investment

The WDA investment includes:

Evaluation methodology

The evaluation uses a mix of qualitative and quantitative methods to address the evaluation questions:

Key findings

Participants in WDA programs and services increased their employment rate, hours worked and weekly earnings. Most survey respondents attributed these increases to their participation in WDA programs or services. Most also reported a high level of satisfaction with the programs and services they received.

The Evaluation Report also found that:


  1. To support program and service delivery, ESDC and P/Ts are encouraged to share and discuss the lessons learned, best practices and challenges associated with serving persons with disabilities and individuals who are further removed from the labour market
  2. Building on existing flexibilities in addressing labour market challenges, ESDC and P/Ts are encouraged to continue working to ensure that the WDA programming responds to the needs of the ever-evolving labour market and discuss ways to reach more individuals who are further removed from the labour market
  3. ESDC and P/Ts are encouraged to discuss what further steps could be taken to facilitate the collection of data necessary to assess the impact of the WDA programming and demonstrate the results to Canadians

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