Every foreigner living in Finland knows that one of the most difficult obstacles to integration is entering the labor market.
One can spend months, even years, sending CVs without receiving an answer. Or, instead of it, a job seeker can try to negotiate an internship or work trial in a company. There is the possibility to enter as a trainee in your field with the support of the Employment and Development office (TE Office).
With this mechanism, those who are getting monthly unemployment benefits have the possibility to increase their earnings by 9€ per day, which will be paid by Kela.
But, how does it work? What is exactly the process?
Looking for a company
Usually in the Finnish system, the job seeker must find by himself the company where he can do a work internship. It’s important that the job seeker has the abilities to work on that company. In the other hand, the company must have the proper characteristics to improve or complement the skills and knowledge of the job seeker.
Companies can also organize work trials and inform TE Office, but TE Office do not publish them anywhere, so job seekers cannot apply for them. Still, if you cannot find the right place by yourself, there is the possibility to inform TE Office that you are available for a work trial and you may get some assistance from them.
Conditions of the work trial
According to TE Office, the job seeker and the company agree the duration and working hours depending on the goals of the company and the situation of the job seeker.
The duration of the work trial in the same company cannot be longer than six months, but TE Office usually recommends 4 or 5 months.
The trainee can continue the work trial with another employer, but the total time of work trial cannot be more than 12 months.
The working hours also depend on the agreement that the company and the job seeker sign. But there is a minimum of 4 hours and a maximum of 8 per day.
Work trial approval
After the applicant agrees on the conditions with the trial organizer, TE Office will check that the work trial is correct and the company fulfills the necessary conditions.
TE Office will inform the trial organizer and the job seeker what’s the decision in a maximum of two weeks.
Practical tips from TE Office
- To speed up the process, TE Office recommends that the job seeker and the trial organizer fill the contract before contacting TE Office. The contract can be found in their website HERE
- Once the contract is filled, it’s much better that the job seeker brings it directly to the TE Office.
- There’s the possibility that the trial organizer also brings or sends the contract, but that could lead to errors in some occasions.
- Don’t send the work trial contract by mail. From the moment TE Office receives the agreement usually the decision takes two weeks. If you send it by postal mail, the processing time could be enlarged to 3 or 4 weeks.