In an effort to improve outcomes for children and families, child welfare systems across the U.S. have placed an increased emphasis on implementing evidence-supported interventions (ESIs). Evaluations of these programs often reveal, however, that implementation of child welfare reforms are incomplete and front-line workers sometimes use their discretion to selectively implement certain practice changes while failing to implement others. Implementation frameworks and guidebooks have been developed to facilitate the translation of ESIs into effective practice with clients; these guides often suggest that a critical first step in the implementation process is to gain buy-in from stakeholders within the agency and surrounding community. Few studies, however, have examined the influences on worker buy-in for child welfare reform efforts. The current study uses data collected during the statewide implementation of a child welfare reform to examine the individual, organizational, and implementation factors that predict worker buy-in for the reform. Using the results of a worker survey (N = 558), stepwise regression found a positive association between a participant's sense of purpose in their work and buy-in for the new initiative. In addition, receiving coaching on specific practices associated with the new initiative was related to higher levels of buy-in. The paper concludes by discussing limitations of the study and the implications of the findings for child welfare implementation efforts.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Sociology and Political Science