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Managing Caseloads in Child Welfare Settings

1. Quantitative data show that departing caseworkers have higher-than-average caseloads and that these high caseloads are a direct association for the increased turnover.

A. True

B. False


2. Workers’ perceptions of their workload is related to:

A. Work-family conflict

B. Mental well-being

C. Depression

D. Workers’ perceptions of their workloads are related to work-family conflict, job satisfaction, mental well-being, strain, depression, distress, fatigue, physical symptoms, burnout, and absenteeism


3. Workers may feel overwhelmed due to secondary traumatic stress, which can occur when a professional experiences stress or symptoms of trauma when working with traumatized children and families.

A. True

B. False


4. In a nationwide survey, State administrators identified all of the following as the most important actions for child welfare agencies to take to retain qualified frontline staff, except for:

A. Increasing new worker training

B. Reducing caseloads

C. Reducing workloads

D. Reducing supervisory ratios


5. How can the most comprehensive approach to assessing caseload and workload (i.e., a workload study), be used by agencies?

A. Developing caseload standards.

B. Assessing the number of workers or positions necessary to complete the required work.

C. Instituting methods to regularly monitor caseload and workload.

D. A workload study can be used by agencies to develop caseload standards, assess the number of workers or positions necessary to complete the required work, and institute methods to regularly monitor caseload and workload.


6. All of the following are indicators of insufficient workforce capacity, except:

A. Backlogs of overdue open investigations.

B. High supervisory ratios.

C. Past-due medical exams, case plans, court hearings, or worker-client contracts.

D. The percent of workers in training.


7. Strategies to manage caseloads and workloads include targeted efforts as well as broader initiative in all of the following categories, except:

A. Enhancing work processes and supports.

B. Implementing program, practice, or system changes.

C. Consolidating requirements and processes.

D. Improving worker effectiveness.


8. To promote efficient work, agencies can implement which strategy?

A. Review existing policies and procedures to ensure they are relevant to current practice needs.

B. Streamline duplicative or inefficient expectations, processes, or forms.

C. Retire outdated requirements or processes that no longer add value.

D. To promote efficient work, agencies can review existing policies and procedures to ensure they are relevant to current practice needs, streamline duplicative or inefficient expectations, processes, or forms, and retire outdated requirements or processes that no longer add value.


9. Growing evidence suggests that an agency’s effectiveness depends on:

A. The organization’s culture and climate.

B. The programs and procedures it implements.

C. An agency’s effectiveness depends on both the organization’s culture and climate and the programs and procedures it implements.

D. An agency’s effectiveness does not depend on the organization’s culture and climate nor the programs and procedures it implements.


10. To reduce turnover, which can be both a consequence and a cause of high workloads, agencies are introducing employee recognition and reward programs, providing mentoring and coaching initiatives, enhancing supervision and support, enabling job sharing and flex time, and offering opportunities for professional development and advanced education.

A. True

B. False


11. Performance issues are often from workers not knowing what is needed to do their jobs correctly, therefore, an agency’s first step should be to provide training.

A. True

B. False


12. The system for assigning cases in a fair and equitable manner should take all of the following into account, except for:

A. The anticipated workload of a case.

B. The more complex cases and/or higher caseloads should go to high-performing workers.

C. The worker’s experience and capabilities.

D. The worker’s current caseload.


13. Supervisors are responsible for approving the use of overtime and for ensuring that workers are not compensating for excessive workloads by working off the clock to keep up with their cases.

A. True

B. False


14. Supervisor support is positively associated with workers’:

A. Satisfaction with their workload management.

B. Intentions to stay on the job.

C. Retention.

D. Supervisor support is positively associated with workers’ satisfaction with their workload management, intentions to stay on the job, and retention.


15. Which of the following schedules has resulted in greater staffing stability?

A. A 4-day week

B. A 4-day week alternating with a 5-day week

C. 1-week on / 1-week off

D. 2-weeks on / 2-weeks off


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