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First Work is
Ontario’s Workforce Development Network.

We support accessible, high quality, outcomes-based employment services to jobseekers seeking opportunities.

First Work is the association membership group responsible for supporting and advocating for a sustainable employment delivery network in Ontario.


First Work’s objective is to foster the development healthy workforce development sector. We work to achieve this goal by offering our community expertise and insight with government on any forth coming regulatory and legislative changes that affect our sector.


Recognizing the need to advance our strategy through evidence-based research and policy, First Work articulates priority research topics that will enable us to deliver on our mission.


First Work provides timely training opportunities for our members and for providers across the province to ensure programming for jobseekers has the latest, best practices in delivery.

Sector Collaboration

First Work creates partnerships and strategic alliances to leverage our ability to address employment challenges and increase our collective impact. We find partners who share our commitment to jobseekers and their employment journey.

Become a member

Join our growing network of providers, educators, and policy-makers to enhance professional development for your staff, to collaborate with like-minded organizations and ensure your concerns are addressed by government.

Ontario’s Employment Services Transformation (EST)

11 July 2024 – First Work released a report independently monitoring the Integrated Employment Services (IES) rollout processes across Ontario. The report explores how this transformation, implemented by the Ministry of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development (MLITSD), is delivering on its promise to promote greater integration between Employment Ontario (EO) and Ontario Works (OW). Read the Report.

Collaborate with us

We know that job-creators, job-seekers, and the link between the two – employment service providers – all benefit from enhanced collaboration. First Work is the convening body to bridge these groups and elevate their collective needs.

Solve workforce solutions.

Amplify your voice

The collective expertise this sector provides and nurtures is an asset for our workforce development policies, particularly as Ontario faces a post-pandemic recovery. First Work leverages sector knowledge for collaborative government advocacy.

Advance evidence-led policy.

Learn with us

With system transformation and pandemic recovery, Ontario employment service providers have a lot to keep up with beyond work on the front-lines. Stay up-to-date on the most promising programming development practices by joining our events, training opportunities, and research initiatives.

Latest training opportunities.

Join the conversation

Looking for the latest in workforce development, Ontario, or First Work news? We’ve got you covered.

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