New programme to boost employment through public procurement
A new programme for boosting employment through procurement launched at the beginning of August aims to increase support for employment through public procurement. The programme can help support access to employment for people with partial work capacity, for example.
The total annual value of public procurements is approximately EUR 35 billion. The majority of this sum is made up by services, in the procurement of which a requirement to provide employment could partially be utilised.
“As municipalities open up services to competitive tendering, adding a requirement to provide employment in the invitation to tender would help employ people with partial work capacity, for example. This would facilitate access to employment for those who are in a vulnerable position in the labour market,” says Minister of Employment Tuula Haatainen.
“Interest towards the operating model of improving employment through procurement has increased. However, this model does not suit all situations equally well. Therefore, we are carefully listening to any critical feedback,” says Minister Haatainen.
The Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment is responsible for the overall implementation of the programme and participates in financing its national coordination. The project launched on 1 August 2020 will be implemented by the Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorities.
“The Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorities has excellent prerequisites for organising national coordination since the model to be disseminated is closely linked to developing municipalities at strategic level, the tasks of the Public Procurement Advisory Unit, and promoting employment,” says Timo Reina, Deputy Managing Director of the Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorities.
The Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorities will introduce the operating model to municipalities. Actors concerned include contracting entities, TE Offices, municipal employment units, municipalities taking part in the local government trials on boosting employment and a wide range of businesses. In addition to municipalities, other public contracting entities can also implement the model.
Attention to the societal impacts of public procurement
Providing employment is one way to take social aspects into account in public procurement. Socially responsible public procurement means that public sector entities consider how their procurement impacts society at large. Socially sustainable procurement may also create overall savings for the entity.
The procurement legislation currently in force allows the use of the operating model of employment through public procurement.
Piia Rekilä, Special Adviser to the Minister of Employment, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, tel. +358 503 963 574
Kimmo Ruth, Senior Ministerial Adviser, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, tel. +358 295 048 073
Erja Lindberg, Development Manager, Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorities +358 503 814 096