In order to promote intra-EU labour mobility, the European Commission tested a mobility scheme called "Your first Eures job" (YFEJ) during three consecutive budget years (2011-2013). YFEJ was implemented as a preparatory action in the framework of the "Youth on the Move" flagship initiative and the Youth Opportunities Initiative . The scheme aimed to help young people to find a job, traineeship or apprenticeship in another Member State (remunerated, minimum 6 months contract). It also supported employers (SMEs with up to 250 employees) to find work force in another EU country for their hard-to-fill vacancies.
As a preparatory action, YFEJ allowed the Commission to experiment with different modes of implementation by way of identifying useful options for the future of transnational mobility schemes (TMS) in general, and of YFEJ in particular. This meant in turn that there have been different types of organisations engaged to implement the action (including organisations from the EURES network, public bodies, private employment providers), along with different approaches and foci being adopted by the different projects. The last of the three successive rounds of the YFEJ preparatory action ended in September 2015. Overlapping with this final round, and continuing into the future, YFEJ is continuing to be implemented in the framework of the Programme for Employment and Social Innovation (EaSI) as a 'targeted mobility scheme' (TMS).
In terms of priorities and objectives, YFEJ reflects the Commission’s desire to promote action to address labour market imbalances and bottleneck vacancies, whilst fostering and supporting labour mobility and providing new opportunities for young people. Its design and focus is that of a targeted job mobility and work-based training action, building on the concept of a customised job mobility scheme, combined with financial support to help young people find a job in other Member States. For Round 3 of the preparatory action, comprising six projects, individual projects were also able to focus on helping young people to gain a placement through an apprenticeship or traineeship, in addition to, or in replacement of, work placements.
The overall aim of the study is to provide evidence to support the development of the European Commission’s policy support for intra-EU labour mobility for young people. To assemble the relevant evidence, the study comprises two dimensions:
• A retrospective dimension, involving the completion of the ex-post evaluation of the Your First EURES Job preparatory action (building on the interim evaluation completed by Ecorys in 2014); and,
• A prospective dimension, establishing the costs and benefits of both the current approach to intra-EU labour mobility (baseline situation) as well as a range of potential future options.
Although the outputs of the two dimensions form two separate deliverables, they will be carried out in parallel, with the lessons from the ex-post evaluation feeding into the analysis of prospective future options. Importantly, the focus of the retrospective ex-post evaluation is on the YFEJ preparatory action, funded under budget years 2011-2013 and ending in 2015, and not the successor YFEJ TMS scheme, funded under EaSI, which is running at present.