Skill deficits are a major bottleneck in sustainable activation of the long-term unemployed. Those managing to get back to work often end up in less complex and skill-intensive jobs and have fewer opportunities to develop their potential.
Those long-term unemployed not successful in making a transition to work are likely to face even more severe and complex skill deficits, among other problems. This report makes the case for a more forward-oriented, skills matching approach to activation that aims at sustainable labour market reintegration. Drawing on evidence and diverse practices from around Europe and the views of practitioners and experts, it presents approaches that put sustainable skills matching centre stage. The report shows how at different steps of the journey towards a job – engagement, programme interventions, and job placement, matching and follow-up – innovative principles, policies and tools can make the return to work of the long-term unemployed a long-lasting outcome.
Programme orientation matters.
Young people (15 to 34) with a VET qualification at upper secondary or post upper-secondary (non-tertiary) level are more likely to be long-term unemployed than comparable general education graduates, at 4% against 2.5% across the EU (Figure 6). In Sweden the difference in LTU rates is negligible but in many countries the risk of LTU among those with a VET background is 1% to 2% points higher than for general study graduates. The LTU risk penalty for those with a VET qualification is highest in Greece (+12%) and Croatia (+10%) and signi cantly higher in Spain, Italy and Slovakia (+4%).