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Perspective 50plus employment pacts for older job seekers

Country of implementation
General short description of the innovation
Perspective 50plus is a national active labour market policy programme in the second tier of Germanys Public Employment Service, i.e. the jobcentres serving the recipients of minimum income benefits. The innovation consists of incentivizing jobcentres to pay special attention to older jobseekers by providing additional funding more flexibly deployable than mainstream almpˇs. This leads to lower caseloads per frontline counselor in the jobcentre itself, or with providers commissioned for that purpose, or in a combination of both with network-type cooperation between jobcentre staff and provider staff. Networks (‰employment pactsˇ) are supposed to extend to employers, social partner organizations, the media, and local civil society. Expectations that the programme would produce totally new instruments or approaches specific to older jobseekersˇ needs were not fulfilled. Compared to standard operations, there is more emphasis on counseling/coaching, on health-related issues, on placement aftercare, and on networking, / knowledge transfer and competence building among frontline staff, regardless whether employed by jobcentres or providers.
Target group
Older Workers
Policy Field
  • employment
Type of Policy
  • other (governmental)
Duration of the policy
2005 - 2015
Scope of innovation
  • Scope: temporary but of rather long duration (10 years). Learning and imitation effects expected, but no structural change.
  • Budgets: 350 million per year
  • Number of intended beneficiaries: Annual participation has grown from around 70,000 in 2008 to currently more than 200,000, covering about one third of the potential target group.
  • Spatial coverage: national but with local jobcentres free to decide whether they would participate or not. Coverage has grown from around 15% to currently more than 90% of existing jobcentres.
General description of (intended) objectives and strategies
- helping older and mostly low-skilled jobseekers into work / / - involving local employers and local civil society in overcoming older workersˇ unemployment / / - testing a budgeting model based on agreed outcome targets and their monitoring / / - dev
Nature of the innovation-short-term perspective
First special national programme launched after the benefit reform and the resulting change in the structure and governance of public employment services ¤ may be seen as an initiative for returning to serving customers after a period of administrative restructuring.
Nature of the innovation-long-term perspective
The programme is part of the governmentˇs strategy for a paradigm shift with regard to employment in older age: from early retirement to working longer.
Type of ideal-typical strategy for the innovation
  • typical strategy for the innovation (optional; according to Obinger)-others (inclusion)
Type of innovation
  • new form of partnership or cooperation
  • new form of policy implementation/delivery
New outputs
  • governance (new mode of governance involving the two types of jobcentres side by side despite ongoing rivalry)
  • services (more personalized and more intensive emp loyment services)
Intended target group
Jobseekers 50plus receiving minimum income benefits.
Working age population
  • educational level (low/medium/high) (low)
  • employment situation (please specify: e.g. typical work/atypical/unemployed) (unemployed)
  • income level (low/medium/high) (low)
  • main source of income: social protection (please specify; e.g. unemployment benefits/disability benefits/social assistance/other benefits) (minimum income benefits (social assistance for people of working age and considered able to work) )
Actors involved in policy-making/implementation and/or evaluation
  • making/implementation and/or evaluation-central state (Ministry of Employment and Social Affairs)
  • making/implementation and/or evaluation-municipal government (either running the jobcentres (25%) or being involved in a ‰joint jobcentreˇ to gether with the local Employment Agency)
  • making/implementation and/or evaluation-private not-for-profit organisations (e.g. Third Sector organisation or NGO) (commissioned with programme management)
Intended output
  • others (job take-ups of older jobseekers (between 6 0,000 and 70,000 annually in years 2011-2013 ))
Intended and unintended outcomes
The programme reaches about 1/3 of the target group.
Clarification of outcomes in terms of impacting resilience and labour market inclusion
The programme contributes to the rise of employment rates of older people in Germany. It reaches about 1/3 of the target group of unemployed people aged 50plus receiving minimum income benefits. It achieves about 1/3 job take-ups among the participants. Costs per job take-up are roughly 6,500 Euros.
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