Banner: Prison To Productivity

Prison To Productivity

Prison To Productivity

Federal agencies including the U.S. Departments of Labor (DOL), Justice (DOJ), and Education (DOE) provide grants to organizations and non-profits around the country to supply employment services for individuals who are unemployed, underemployed, or seeking advanced employment and have been involved with the criminal justice system. Education and training that prepare individuals for credentials in demand industries in their local communities are core components of these grants.

Grantees administer a variety of instruments to measure and assess their participants’ job readiness and skill levels. These assessments are conducted to help match interests, skills, and experience with career choices that possess the highest potential for employment success. Based on assessment results, individuals are placed in training programs that are designed to increase their job readiness. They are often provided with soft skills training and supportive services as well.

Please take a close look at the assessment tools noted below. You may recognize several of them! Many employers use these same tools to craft job descriptions, create employee evaluations, and set salary requirements.


O*Net(Occupational Information Network)

Prison to Productivity ONet image

*O*Net affords the opportunity for individuals to match their interests, personalities, and previous experiences to career choices. This online tool allows individuals to research employment interests and match them to abilities and skills on over 5,000 job descriptions. The site also provides referrals to other websites for job listings and career information.

My Next Move

Prison to Productivity MyNextMove image

*My Next Move is a career tool that is well suited for people who have little or no work experience, recent high school or college graduates, or those who may never have worked. This online program provides job descriptions and position requirements, describes abilities and skills needed to be employed in a position, and addresses what interests best match specific jobs. Through a series of self-assessment questions, individuals can determine if a specific career or occupation makes sense. If interested, users can go to a separate section on the site to learn particulars about average salaries, statistics on employment projections, and job locations around the country.

ACT WorkKeys

Prison to Productivity ACT WorkKeys image

ACT WorkKeys is used nationally in high schools and community colleges and is recognized by many employment associations and employers as helpful in measuring an individual’s abilities and skills to achieve potential success in a specific industry. It allows grantees and employers to assess participants’ strengths and weaknesses, develop employment profiles based on assessments and interests, and identify jobs that are best suited for each participant or prospective employee.

Workkeys also builds upon identified skills, helps to create accurate resumes that highlight those skills, and supports the establishment of the right connections between candidates and employers.

ACT Work Keys

ACT Career Curriculum

Prison to Productivity ACT image

ACT Career Curriculum measures critical reading and math skills necessary for employment by industry and position type. The exercises confirm if participants’ skill levels meet the requirements of specific positions and refer them to appropriate instructional support if they don’t.

*Disclaimer: O*Net and My Next Move are sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration. The other sources are listed to provide additional information on related jobs, specialties and/or industries. Links to non-DOL Internet sites are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement.