The primary purpose of active employment measures is to contribute to a well-functioning labour market by assisting unemployed people to find work, to provide services to employers seeking labour or wishing to retain employees, and to support people with special needs, or a reduced ability to work, to find work.
Active employment measures are thus relatively widespread in Denmark and encompass all categories of unemployed people.
There are three types of active employment measure which job centres are able to offer unemployed people. These are:
- Education, guidance and upgrading of skills: This can consist of brief guidance and clarification activities, ordinary education and training (certified informal educational institutions, specifically arranged projects and training periods). In the past, the majority of participants took part in so-called “other types of counselling and training” which is a diverse category covering different municipal activation projects and job search training.
- Jobs subject to wage subsidy at public or private employers can be used to retrain the professional and social competences of unemployed people. Wage subsidies (both in the private and the public sector) are provided to employers when they hire a person who has been unemployed for at least 6 months. Public and private companies are eligible for a wage subsidy to hire an unemployed person for a period of 4 or 12 months depending on which category of unemployment he or she belongs to.
- Practical work training at public and private enterprises can be used to retrain jobseekers and thereby upgrade their qualifications. The jobseeker continues to receive unemployment insurance benefit for the duration of an internship to develop her/his skills.