Our constantly changing economy releases almost every day new products and markets. Also the labour markets are not uninvolved in the permanent changing conditions and therewith in the increased competition within the markets. The EU developed a strategy that faces these challenges. It is called: Flexicurity.
This word-combination includes the words flexibility and security and was created by the EU in 2007. The idea is not only to support the employees with security but to provide the entrepreneurs with a flexible workforce. Furthermore it addresses the needs of the modern labor market while ensuring a sufficient level of protection.
Through the work with all 27 European governments, social partners and academics the flexicurity defined common principles for countries who want to implement this strategy in their policies. There are four main components:
- Flexible and reliable contractual arrangements
- Modern social protection systems
- Effective active labour market policies
- Comprehensive lifelong learning strategies
The targets flexicurity is focusing on are both enhancing the quality of employment all over Europe and creating a balanced and more uniform labour market with long-lasting contracts that support the less advantaged groups. Furthermore there are aims to improve social protection systems and develop a career security by relieving changeover between jobs.
The role in the European Employment Strategy
Flexicurity is a very important part of the Employment Guidelines and the European Employment Strategy and it is the determining factor in the process of modernizing labour markets.
Five different initiatives were created to deal with the concept of improving employment.
First there is the agenda for new skills and jobs. This measure tries to reduce partition and support the changeover through increase flexicurity. It also provides people with appropriate abilities for employment and tries to enhance the working conditions and job creation. The second measure is new skills for new jobs. Here the people continue and improve their educational skills. Youth on the Move is a big initiative that enables young people to study abroad or in general acquire new competences and qualifications. Another type of support is aimed at companies that want to restructure. The mission assists the preparation and helps to oversee the whole process. Providing the public employment services (job search support or career analyses) belongs also to one of the main tasks of European Employment Strategy.
This concept was successfully operated in 5 European countries, including Spain.