Levers for Change

Levers are the mechanisms to advance job quality. Each lever outlines a different way to operationalize the work of implementing job quality. Levers can be used individually or in tandem. Agencies should choose one or two levers as a starting point to advance their project or initiative. Don’t be afraid to start small and then build over time.

Use the sidebar to learn more about each lever.

Influences the quality of jobs and equity of access by examining how funds are used and for what purposes. Organizations can use procurement practices to directly fund projects focused on job quality/equity, to prioritize diversity and high-quality jobs within the organizations they financially support, or to incentivize the creation or advancement of good jobs through the procurement process itself.  Businesses can use this lever through their purchasing processes.

Learn more about implementing the procurement lever

Provides employees, partners and customers of your organization with opportunities for voice, choice and representation. Empowerment practices recognize historical and systemic inequities and intentionally equip individuals to participate at the decision-making table in real and meaningful ways.

Learn more about implementing the empowerment lever

Help organizations "walk the talk" internally. Human resources can set the standard for how employees are treated, not only at the time of hire, but also throughout the employment life cycle. Internal human resource practices are a good place to begin the journey of improving job quality and equity; a sound foundation in human resources is essential for advanced work down the road.

Learn more about implementing the HR lever

Helps to set the tone for the organization and also defines the processes, structures and requirements that influence job quality and equity outcomes. Organizations can directly influence what is mandated, incentivized or prohibited through regulations. Further, this lever can be a powerful signal to the community of the value of job quality and equity, encouraging change within other organizations.

Learn more about implementing the policy lever

Ensures that workers are protected through existing laws, employers understand changes and are accountable for legal protections. This includes equipping employers as well as monitoring job quality protections and contract requirements related to procurement policies, incentive programs, wage subsidy programs and other policies that go beyond federal, state and local labor law.

Learn more about implementing the education and enforcement lever

Looking for more information on the levers?  Check out case studies, trainings and materials in our Resources page. 


Selected your lever(s)? Now move on to documenting your goals.