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Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act

President Barack Obama signed the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) into law on July 22, 2014. WIOA is designed to help job seekers access employment, education, training, and support services to succeed in the labor market and to match employers with the skilled workers they need to compete in the global economy. Congress passed the Act by a wide bipartisan majority; it is the first legislative reform in 15 years of the public workforce system.

Every year the key programs that form the pillars of WIOA help tens of millions of job seekers and workers to connect to good jobs and acquire the skills and credentials needed to obtain them. The enactment of WIOA provides opportunity for reforms to ensure the American Job Center system is job-driven—responding to the needs of employers and preparing workers for jobs that are available now and in the future.

WIOA supersedes the Workforce Investment Act of 1998 and amends the Adult Education and Family Literacy Act, the Wagner-Peyser Act, and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. In general, the Act takes effect on July 1, 2015, the first full program year after enactment, unless otherwise noted. The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) will issue further guidance on the timeframes for implementation of these changes and proposed regulations reflecting the changes in WIOA soon after enactment.

The WIOA Resource Page

DOL, in coordination with the U.S. Departments of Education (ED) and Health and Human Services (HHS), is working diligently to ensure that states, local areas, other grantees, and stakeholders are prepared for implementation of WIOA. The WIOA Resource Page will provide information and resources for States, local areas, non-profits and other grantees, and other stakeholders to assist with implementation of the Act. This page will be updated to reflect newly developed materials, including responses to frequently asked questions.

Notice of Proposed Rulemaking Updates   New Icon

Stakeholder Input and Engagement

Input from the state and local workforce leaders and practitioners, as well as other stakeholders, is critical to the success of WIOA implementation. DOL, in collaboration with the Departments of Education and Health and Human Services, will provide workforce system partners and stakeholders with opportunities to provide input in-person and virtually throughout the implementation period.

In September and October, ETA hosted a series of in-person town hall listening sessions in each of our six regions, designed to support strong implementation of the new legislation. These sessions offered an opportunity for our broad stakeholder groups to share their questions, insights and suggestions regarding the changes outlined in the WIOA legislation. Thanks to all who participated in these events.

ETA is also hosting a series of Stakeholder Consultation Webinars to engage the public in implementation of WIOA. Archived versions of the previous Consultation Webinars are available here.

The U.S. Department of Education invites you to submit comments and recommendations for implementation of WIOA on Department of ED's WIOA blog

Related Guidance

WIOA Technical Assistance Tools and Resources

Job-Driven Vision


  • Read Secretary of Labor, Tom Perez's blog post regarding the enactment of WIOA.  
  • Read Secretary of Labor, Tom Perez's statement to the press on the passage of WIOA.