Public procurement can help promote employment

The Government Programme includes an objective that a condition is set for social employment in public procurement. The policy will be taken forward in the programme by the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment which will boost employment through procurement. 

The programme is part of the implementation of the Government’s work ability programme, which aims to improve the labour market position of people with partial work ability. 

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 will promote 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. 

The objective of the programme to boost employment through procurement is 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 is 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 ability, 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 is coordinated by the Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorities, plays an essential role in the implementation of the programme. The Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment provides funding for the project. 

The project’s aim is 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 will continue until the end of March 2023.

The following development projects are under way: 

  • 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

Inquiries: Päivi Haavisto-Vuori, paivi.haavisto-vuori(at)gov.fi and Anu Tirkkonen, Project Manager, Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorities