Note! The project has ended and the content of this page will no longer be updated. Updated information is available here: Supporting employment through public procurement

Public procurement can help promote employment

Prime Minister Sanna Marin's Government Programme has included an objective that a condition is set for social employment in public procurement. The policy was taken forward in the programme by the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment which boosted employment through procurement. 

The programme was part of the implementation of the Government’s Working capacity programme, which has aimed to improve the labour market position of people with impaired work capacity. 

The closing seminar of the programme to boost employment through procurement was held on 14 February 2023. The recording of the seminar and the seminar materials are available on the website of the Association of Finnish local and Regional authorities.

Employment through procurement is also included in the Procurement Finland strategy launched by the Ministry of Finance.

Employment condition of procurement opens up many opportunities 

The programme has been promoting access to employment for those in a weaker labour market position through the condition to provide employment in procurement. At the moment, this condition is not used very often, although the law allows it.

Employment through procurement means that the public procuring entity attaches a condition concerning employment to the invitation to tender and the procurement contract. The employment terms require that the selected contracting partner employs persons in a vulnerable labour market position defined by the client during the contract period, such as the long-term unemployed, persons with partial work ability or young people.

The objective of the programme to boost employment through procurement was to

  • ensure that the operating model concerning the employment condition is part of normal procurement activities and cooperation structures
  • consolidate and spread the operating model to public contracting entities
  • involve the parties assisting in recruitment in the different stages of the process 
  • to increase the employment of people in a vulnerable labour market position as the operating model spreads

The programme has been based on the Act on Public Procurement and Concession Contracts (1397/2016). Under the Act, factors related to employment or its promotion may be included in the conditions of procurement or the procurement criteria.  In connection with each procurement, an assessment will be made of whether the use of the employment condition or criteria is appropriate for procurement. 

With the limitation of the target group, contracting entities can also examine suitable target groups on a regional basis. Based on the condition, a certain factor, such as long-term unemployment or partial work capacity, must place the applicant in a weaker position in recruitment.

Operating model spreads in national and regional procurement networks

The national project to boost employment through procurement, which was coordinated by the Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorities, has played an essential role in the implementation of the programme. The Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment has provided funding for the project. 

The project’s aim was to develop and expand the use of the operating model through networking and provision of advice. Those interested in employment through procurement are welcome to join the project cooperation network and attend its meetings.

Public Procurement Advisory Unit assists in the interpretation of the Act on Public Procurement.

The project will continue to develop public procurement. More information on earlier projects:

The operating model will be examined in regional projects that develop and test it in practice. The objective is to consolidate the operating model of employment through procurement in municipalities. The projects funded by the TE Offices ended in March 2023.

The following development projects were included: 

  • Vantaa and Kerava: Löytö project
  • Oulu: Faster employment through procurement
  • City of Tampere: Work through procurement
  • Turku: Turku employs through procurement
  • Seinäjoki: HANSA project
  • City of Kouvola: Effective employment through procurement – HATTY project
  • City of Kajaani: Employment through procurement (project has ended on 31 March 2022)

A handbook on employment through procurement as a practical tool

In the project to boost employment through procurement, a guide has been drawn up with the aim of serving as a tool for both those who are only considering the introduction of employment through procurement and those who have already used the employment requirement in their procurement. The guide describes the current status of the use of the employment clause in municipalities that have had an employment policy project supporting the employment clause.

The guide presents the experiences and examples of the following municipalities: Vantaa-Kerava, Tampere, Turku, Kouvola, Oulu and Seinäjoki.

Inquiries: Päivi Haavisto-Vuori, paivi.haavisto-vuori(at)