EU Commission to tackle skills mismatch - 10 actions
Why are so many highly-qualified young people working in low-skilled jobs when 40% of European companies say they can't find the right people to grow their business?
The European Commission says there are serious skills mismatches and gaps in the EU's labour market and today announced 10 actions it wants to take at European level.
Vice-President for the Euro and Social Dialogue, Valdis Dombrovskis, said: "With millions of people in the EU currently out of work, we need to do all we can to help equip them with the right skills for the evolving labour market. Today's 10-point action plan sets out areas where the EU can help make a difference, from ensuring better recognition of qualifications across EU borders, to a Skills Guarantee that helps low-skilled adults learn essential literacy, numeracy and digital skills."
Forty-per cent of Europeans lack the basic digital skills necessary for today's fast-changing labour market. And even in 2016, 70 million Europeans  lack sufficient reading, writing and numeracy skills.
Citing a lack of relevant skills to match labour market needs and problems with mutual recognition of qualifications, the Commission's 10 point plan covers a broad range of labour market bottle-necks.
They will be rolled out over the next two years, with some being launched today. (Note for information: Legal competence for education and training lies with Member States, but as countries have similar challenges and opportunities such as skills mismatches, skills shortages and insufficient workers' mobility, digital needs, ageing workforces, brain drain, or migratory flows, the Commission plays a coordinating role through common initiatives, frameworks and guidelines, and by sharing expertise and good practice.)
The 10 Actions proposed:
- A Skills Guarantee to help low-skilled adults acquire a minimum level of literacy, numeracy and digital skills and progress towards an upper secondary qualification.
- A review of the European Qualifications Framework for a better understanding of qualifications and to make better use of all available skills in the European labour market.
- The "Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition" bringing together Member States and education, employment and industry stakeholders to develop a large digital talent pool and ensure that individuals and the labour force in Europe are equipped with adequate digital skills.
- The ‘Blueprint for Sectoral Cooperation on Skills’ to improve skills intelligence and address skills shortages in specific economic sectors.
Other actions will be launched later this year and in 2017:
- A "Skills Profile Tool for Third Country Nationals" to support early identification and profiling of skills and qualifications of asylum seekers, refugees and other migrants.
- A revision of the Europass Framework, offering people better and easier-to-use tools to present their skills and get useful real-time information on skills needs and trends which can help with career and learning choices.
- Making Vocational Education and Training (VET) a first choice by enhancing opportunities for VET learners to undertake a work based learning experience and promoting greater visibility of good labour market outcomes of VET.
- A review of the Recommendation on Key Competences to help more people acquire the core set of skills necessary to work and live in the 21st century with a special focus on promoting entrepreneurial and innovation-oriented mind-sets and skills.
- An initiative on graduate tracking to improve information on how graduates progress in the labour market.
- A proposal to further analyse and exchange best practices on effective ways to address brain drain.
European Commission press release: Ten actions to help equip people in Europe with better skills