Name given to an instrument for promotion of the labour market introduced in Austria under the 1988 Unemployment Insurance Act (Arbeitslosenversicherungsgesetz) to assist company restructuring (originally in the steel and paper industries). Funded by a combination of resources from unemployment insurance, the employers concerned and contributions from the employees directly affected and “solidarity” contributions levied on other employees, these schemes are directed at securing the re-employment of employees threatened with imminent dismissal by providing career guidance, re-skilling, outplacement (assistance with job search) and enterprise start-up grants. As a form of funding from unemloyment insurance, unemployment benefit is paid in the context of such measures for two years and, by way of exception for older employees, up to four years, and employees with places on a funded re-employment scheme also receive an additional allowance. More recently, similar initiatives have been set up in the form of associations of several companies with additional local government and EU funding (for example, the food industry, haulage industry, regional and sectoral schemes). So far, the measures concerned have proved their worth; the majority of employees benefiting from these schemes have been successfully integrated into new employment and in some cases their level of earnings has even been improved.

Please note: the European industrial relations glossaries were compiled between 1991 and 2003 and are not updated. For current material see the European industrial relations dictionary.