Who We Are
The Department of Workforce Services (DWS or the Department) assists Wyoming’s communities to adapt and thrive, providing a livable wage for families through sustaining income, fair and legal employment, enforcement of child labor laws, legal payment of wages, and a safe working environment for Wyoming workers.
To develop a sustainable and quality workforce, the Department assists Wyoming businesses and serves a variety of clients, including employers, employees, injured workers, job seekers, individuals with disabilities, families working toward earning self-sustaining wages, healthcare providers, child care providers, parents of young children, older workers, veterans, individuals seeking social security disability benefits, training providers, youth, and many more!
Our mission is to collaborate to support a thriving workforce and economy, and our vision is to lead workforce innovation and investing in employee development today, for a stronger tomorrow.
The Department is structured into three primary divisions: Workforce Programs, Standards and Compliance, and Research, Policy, and Communications.
Each of the Department’s divisions are viewed as an integration of services following the merger of two state agencies in 2011. All divisions are either mandated by law or connected to mandates.
The Department’s programs are deeply impactful in terms of safety advocacy and enforcement, job connection and training, benefits to those who have lost employment, have been injured on the job or have become disabled, and enforcement of labor law. The Department administers 55 state and federal programs in 20 field offices across Wyoming.
The purpose of the realignment is ultimately aimed at bettering the mission of the agency, while providing a more efficient internal structure that will benefit both internal and external stakeholders.
Workforce Standards Division
The Workforce Standards Division is responsible for the Workers Compensation Program, as well as regulatory and compliance/enforcement. The following Programs are included under this Division:
- Employment Tax
- Labor Standards
- Workers Compensation Claims and Employer Services
- Workers Compensation Safety and Risk (WCSR)
- Wyoming Occupation Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)
Policy and Communication Division
The Policy and Communication Division is responsible for policy development/distribution, education, information, and outreach. The following Programs are included under this Division:
- Occupational Epidemiologist
- Research & Planning
- WIOA Policy Strategy Team
- Workforce Development Council Liaison
Workforce Programs Division
The Workforce Programs Division is responsible for the employment and social services aspects of DWS. The following Programs are included under this Division:
Through its 55 state and federal programs administered in 23 field offices, the DWS places emphasis on eight core functions:
- Benefits: Stabilization of the quality of life for injured and/or unemployed workers, medical and indemnity benefits for injured workers, monitoring of trends in labor market information to assist with economic development.
- Career Guidance: Assessing skills, interests and aptitudes which establish solid career pathways.
- Collections: Initiating employer registration, collection of payroll information to ensure proper remittance of workers’ compensation and unemployment insurance premiums, capture of data for development into labor market information.
- Employment: Job placement and retention.
- Enforcement: Investigation of wage claims and fair employment assurance, inspection of all mines and quarries, monitoring of workplace-related fatalities, injuries and illnesses through inspection, consultation, training and compliance.
- Recruitment: The process of connecting an individual employment seeker to an employer which has identified specific skills and qualifications.
- Rehabilitation: Assisting clients with disabilities in acquiring and retaining employment through specialized assessment, vocational counseling and guidance, physical and mental restoration, training, employment placement and professional development.
- Training: Programs focused on skills development for placement, retention and wage progression/career advancement.
DWS also administers and/or collaborates with other agencies, councils, and teams to carry out important Governor-promoted initiatives and state and federal legislative mandates.
Commissions and Boards
There are several Commissions and/or Boards that help govern DWS’ activities. These include the following commissions:
- Unemployment Insurance
The Office of Administrative Hearings hears contested Workers Compensation claims involving compensability, while the Medical Commission hears contested, medically complex cases.
Each commission consists of a number of individuals appointed by the Governor, and Wyoming Statute clarifies the power vested in them. The federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) dictates that each state has Workforce Development Board(s) charged with directing federal, state and local funding to workforce development programs. Wyoming has one state-level Workforce Development Board which advises the Wyoming DWS and the 20 Workforce Centers in the State. In Wyoming, this board is called the Wyoming Workforce Development Council (WWDC) and serves in the capacity as “Local Board(s)” as well.
The Wyoming Department of Workforce Services collects workforce data through the following projects: