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The dual system of vocational
education and youth coaching
programme in Austria
A Nordic conference on workbased learning –
Learning for Life
Iceland,25,September 2014
Ingeborg Friehs
Public Employment Service Austria
The Austrian dual system
 Duration: 2-4 years
 Employment contract with the firm (special type –
apprenticeship), remuneration
 80% company- based learning, 20% school
 200+ different professions with standardised
 Final examination –diploma of completing a
vocational education
 Possibility of passing an entry exam for university
after completing the apprenticeship
The Austrian dual system
 40% of each cohort, approx. 125.000 apprentices
 Usually after finishing compulsory school ( age 15)
 Offers opportunities also for weaker pupils
 Support for disadvantaged and those who couldn`t
find an apprenticeship in a company : supra –
company apprenticeship (training guarantee) and
integrated vocational education (one year more than
The Austrian dual system
How to find an apprenticeship position?
 Usually the young person applies directly at the
 Support of the PES to find a company
 If no apprenticeship place can be found, young
people can do a supra –company apprenticeship
The Austrian dual system
Why do firms offer apprenticeship positions?
 Long established system, widely recognised
tradition to offer apprenticeship positions, (40.000
enterprises, each company needs a person who
has a training authority)
 Investing in company-specific knowledge
 Preventing shortage of skilled workers
The Austrian dual system
Essential role of social partnership:
 For companies and employees it is obligatory to be
a member of the Chamber of Commerce or the
Chamber of labour respectively.
 Those two chambers are strongly committed to the
apprenticeship system.
 They are strongly involved, in particular with regard
to the deveopment of new trades or the adaption of
the curricula.The overall orientation of the dual
system has a strong focus on business needs.
The Austrian dual system
Financing :
 Enterprises develop voluntary at one`s own expense ( the
whole training in the firm as well as the remuneration to the
Low remuneration – corresponding to the fact that
apprentices are basically in a learning position but not in a full
productive working position:
Approx. 420€ in the first year, 540€ in the second,770€ in the third
and 840€ in the fourth year( the remuneration is higher in the metal
processing industry ). – Corresponds to 10-20% of a skilled workers
salary in the first year and 20-50% in the third year of apprenticeship.
 Schools (equippment, teachers) are financed by State
 Supra- company apprenticeship training is completely financed
by State
The Austrian dual system
Subsidies to employers:
 Yearly basic subsidy: It amounts to three times the
apprentisceship compensation in the first year, two times in the
second and once in the third and fourth year
Additional quality related subsidies ( for every final
examination with excellent grades, support for further
education of trainers, measures for apprentices with learning
Special incentives for specific target groups ( women in maledominated occupations, disadvantaged ) , offered by PES or
fundings for apprentices with disabilities, offered by the Federal
Social Service
The Austrian dual system
Advantages from a labour market perspective:
 Training takes place under conditions of a real work life
 Always „state of the art“ – more flexibility to respond to
technical progress in comparison to a school system.
Labour market access is easier after completing the training
(work practice available, training company knows the strengths
and weaknesses of the individual young person)
Better prospects for disadvantaged, late developed and weak
young persons
Training takes place predominately in productive work
situation. This reduces costs and reinforces the learning
motivation of the young people.
The Austrian dual system
 Change in the skills that are demanded. Focus is changing to more
adapability and skills that are easier to inpart in schools. Frequently
enterprises have to take over the role of the young people´s home
regarding to learn a good behave.
Trend towards a higher qualification and education, which allow directly
entering into university with the consequence that predominantly weaker
young people ore those who don`t want to go to school any more are
candidates for apprenticeships.- Leads to a loss of image.
Instability of jobs and apprenticeship positions is increasing and also the
continuance in a company after completion has been decreasing. - Leads
to uncertainty.
In particular sectors (e.g.tourism), there is a shortage of apprentices while
in sum more people are looking for an apprenticeship than positions are
Gender segregation and persons with migration background are
underrepresented –a better vocational orientation becomes more
The Austrian dual system
Supracompany apprenticeship:
Since 1998 offer of additional apprenticeship places (employment package),
since 2008 training guarantee
Target group. Those who couldn`t find an apprenticeship position or who did
drop out of a company- based apprenticeship
The priority is, to find an apprenticeship position within a company
Two types:
a.Supra –company apprenticeship training is carried out by an educational
• Theoretical training in a vocational school
• Practical training offered by the educational institution
• Training contract during the entire time of apprenticeship, (if necessary)
between the educational institution and the apprentice
• Goal: completion of apprenticeship (ideally in a firm)
The Austrian dual system
b. Cooperation between an educational institution and a private
• Theoretical training in a vocational school
• Practical training in a company
• Training contract betwen the educational institution and the
apprentice ( usually 1 year)
Goal: transfer to apprenticeship in a company
Participants receive comprehensive support:
Socio-pedagogical counselling,learning support, assistence
with job search or apprenticeship search
The Austrian dual system
Allowance for participants:
€ 270 per month in the first and second year,
€ 600 per month from the third year
Places in supracompany apprenticeship training entities:
around 12.000
Budget 2012/13: around 175Mio €, expenses per person and
year: around 14.000€
Labour market integration within one year: more than 50%
Youth Coaching Programme
 Target group: young people and people not in education,
employment or training (NEETS)
Goal: to keep young people within the education and training
system as long as possible and
Efforts are made to ensure that those who have already left the
system will be offered the chance to resume their education or
Youth Coaching has been created to ensure the interface of
advice, guidance and support for young people from the end of
compulsory school until such time as they are fully integrated
into continuing training or educational programmes.
Fields of support and advice are education and employment
issues as well as personal issues
Youth Coaching Programme
 Coaches offer free support and are responsible to cooperate
and communicate with different programme partners
(employment services, the federal social office, schools,
municipalities, projects, training institutions, external
counselling institutions)
The pilot of this programme started in 2012 with about 12.500
participants and has been implemented in 2013 nationwide
with around 35.000 persons.
Result of the pilot-evaluation: Only 15% oft he participants
dropped out or left the programme without a specific goal
orientation, the programme turned out to be very successful.
The programme is carried out by the Federal Social Office.
Thank you for your attention!