Applying Human-Centered Design to Improve Workforce Services

The Los Angeles County Department of Workforce Development, Aging and Community Services (WDACS) provides services to connect the most historically vulnerable populations in the County with high-quality jobs and careers. FUSE Executive Fellow Patrick Koppula applied a human-centered design approach to help WDACS integrate and deliver services at key moments in the journey of job seekers and employers. He produced customer experience and service design continuous improvement cycles, toolkits focused on training programs and apprenticeships, and a pilot to promote more equitable participation in youth programs. He also facilitated research, prototyping, and incubation of measures to make services more adaptive to the challenges of economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The results of Patrick’s work include products and systems to bridge identified gaps in WDACs operations, key staff at all levels empowered with the principles and practices of human-centered service design, data-driven decision making approaches, and lean project management practices. These changes continue to support WDACS in its efforts to help connect people excluded from the labor market to businesses in need of middle-wage workers.

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