Online Guide to the Labour Market / Labour Market Integrated System
The instrument started in 2003 as an internal tool for labour offices. It has been operating as an online labour market information portal since 2013.
The instrument's aim is to tackle unemployment.
The policy goal of ISTP is to bring together the concept of skill-oriented guidance for the unemployed and a database of vacant jobs organised according to a standardised classification of occupations. This framework is meant to provide a job seeker with a personal skills profile that can be matched with skills and competences required for specific work positions and with actual job offers. The instrument (online guide) offers jobseekers information and counselling that is useful for finding a job that corresponds to educational attainment, experience, knowledge and skills of the user. It also presents job vacancies that can be searched and allow creating personal profile visible to employers. Employers can publish vacancies and search job candidates.
Based on an explicit recognition that work positions need to be matched with required skills (and vice versa). The tool, however, is more general in terms of bridging information asymmetries in the labour market and helping to match jobs to jobseekers, and career orientation of young people.
Aim of policy instrument
The Governmental Manifesto, as well as other national and European documents.
Main responsible body
The Central Office of Labour, Social Affairs and Family
The project sponsor is the Ministry of Labour, Social Affairs and Family of the Slovak Republic and the project coordinator is Central Office of Labour, Social Affairs and Family. The project is supported by social partners (employers’ associations: Federation of Employers’ Associations of the Slovak Republic, National Union of Employers; and trade unions: Confederation of Trade Unions of the Slovak Republic) and regional representatives (Association of Towns and Municipalities of the Slovak Republic). The portal is run by a private company Trexima.
The initial stages of the instrument were financed by the European Social Fund, Operation Programme Employment and Social Inclusion within the national project (NP VII-2 Podpora sprostredkovania zamestnania a odborných poradenských služieb poskytovaných úradmi práce, sociálnych vecí a rodiny). At present, ISTP is financed from the state budget within the budget of the Ministry of Labour, Social Affairs and Family of the Slovak Republic.
The current agreement on services with Trexima, which is valid from August 2015 to August 2018, is for the amount of €3,462,912. Previous agreements on services, valid from June 2012 to September 2014 amounts to €1,458,000, and the agreement on the expanding functionality, valid from April 2013 to March 2014 to €1,943,928.
For unemployed people (jobseekers and voluntarily unemployed), the portal provides one of the largest job vacancy databases in Slovakia and the database of training courses, career guidance tools, as well as information on employers' demands for education, knowledge, skills and competencies related to the selected job.
Employers benefit from the free job advertisement and free access to the personal profiles of jobseekers. In addition, they can get information related to personnel management, such as requirements for the publishing of job vacancies and requirements for the qualification of labour force.
Students, their parents and school counsellors can learn what type of education is needed to perform an individual job, which schools in Slovakia provide such education and can also get advice and information on career guidance.
Public employees/labour office staff can acquire knowledge regarding the registration process of clients, creation of their personal profiles, mediation between employers and jobseekers, planning of vocational training of jobseekers, etc.
Use of labour market intelligence
The instrument offers four main tools: job vacancies, information on courses for education and training, job compass survey, and register of occupations. For job vacancies, ISTP collects regular updates based on materials from the local labour offices and employers (job vacancies advertised free of charge). Job seekers are then matched with offers based on their professional competence. Similarly, the job compass matches the users based on an online survey with suitable job offers. The register of occupations contains the updated information on occupations and gross monthly wages for individual jobs.
Project is funded by ESF and the state budget. Users (clients) can create their personal profiles free of charge. Employers can publish job vacancies free of charge. No additional incentives were given.
Frequency of updates
On a regular basis (day-to-day maintenance). The instrument also offers a chat agent and a call centre.
ISTP has been developed in 2003 for the internal needs of local labour offices as a tool for analysing the individual potential of jobseekers. ISTP assisted in choosing appropriate further education, retraining and re-qualification or in finding job offers. In 2013, ISTP was transformed to an online tool that is directly linked to 46 regional labour offices to directly match suitable candidates with job offers, and to provide a possibility of free job vacancy advertising for employers. In 2017, ISTP is a sophisticated system with one of the largest databases of job vacancies and job seekers, which in addition offers targeted career advice on jobs, an analysis of employability, and also information services related to employment. The current design of ISTP was launched in April 2017.
Similarly to other IT systems, ISTP requires day-to-day maintenance and administration, and it also requires development of new functionalities, which is reflected in the cost of running and developing ISTP. These costs are, however, paid from public sources from the budget of the Ministry of Labour, which means that they need to be planned in advance when constructing the state budget. Another barrier to the full competitiveness of the portal is limited financial resources for media campaigns that would adequately extend information on ISTP to a wider public.
Direct linkage to local labour offices, support from the social partners and a possibility to advertise job vacancies free of charge for employers.
The progress is measured on a regular basis. The most important indicators are quantitative, such as the website traffic, the number of registered employers, the number of registered job vacancies, the number of users who used their account at least once, the number of users with CVs, etc.
The innovativeness lies in a complex approach to presenting the world of work from different perspectives. Job compass also entails soft skills requirements and personal characteristics, which is not a common international practice.
Evidence of effectiveness
The portal provides more than 80,000 job vacancies. 28,000 employers are searching for a fitting candidate via the portal and 79,282 profiles of job seekers with CVs are registered. The number of users who used their account at least once is approximately 360,000. In addition, the webpage has on average 650,000 monthly visits. From the point of view of beneficiaries, the instrument, in addition to the quantitative indicators, monitors whether the withdrawn job offer have been filled or cancelled. At the individual level, the instrument for instance monitors the number of agents (an electronic search engine for suitable vacancies) sent to a candidate. When users changes their status from unemployed to employed, the users are asked to identify areas that has helped them in practice, with ISTP being one of the options. The continuation of the portal suggests that the authorities evaluated the instrument as successful. Unexpected costs stem from the nature of the instrument (IT system), which requires day-to-day maintenance and development of new tools.
Engagement of stakeholders
The role of Trexima (provider of ISTP services) is specified in an agreement on services with the Central Office of Labour, Social Affairs and Family. The stakeholders' engagement and support arises from Slovakia’s commitments to the European Social Charter and ILO Convention on free provision of timely labour market information. Individual employers can sign up and publish job vacancies free of charge.
Similar instruments already exist in many other countries.
The instrument is in use (the current agreement on services is valid until August 2018), and its continuation and development is planned. The continuation of the portal is also foreseen, due to the various legislative requirements, e.g. regarding the employment of the third country nationals, in which employers are obliged to inform the labour office about the job openings 15 or 30 days prior to the employment of third country nationals (depending on the status of the third country national), and their numbers and characteristics of the job openings. The instrument is seen as a public tool for modern employment services.