EMCC European Monitoring Centre on Change

Training eligible costs (training aid)

Croatia
Phase: Anticipation
Typ:
  • Access to finance
  • Support for digitalisation
  • Fostering innovation
  • Support of companies' growth
  • Support of internationalisation
  • Support of SMEs
  • Training
Senast ändrad: 27 August, 2020
Lokalt namn:

Opravdani troškovi usavršavanja (potpora za usavršavanje)

Engelskt namn:

Training eligible costs (training aid)

Coverage/Eligibility

The grant is provided to companies that finance staff training related to investments in technological modernisation or production process change, business enlargement, and business internationalisation. The training eligible costs may include trainers’ personnel costs, for the hours during which the trainers participate in the training; trainers’ and trainees’ operating costs directly relating to the training project such as travel expenses, materials, and supplies directly related to the project, depreciation of tools and equipment, to the extent that they are used exclusively for the training project. Accommodation costs are excluded. Costs of advisory services linked to the training project; trainees’ personnel costs and general indirect costs (administrative costs, rent, overheads) for the hours during which the trainees participate in the training. The Yearly report for 2018 by the Croatian Employment Service (on page 36)  stipulates that this measure is intended for employers who, due to changes in production processes, the transition to new technologies or the lack of skilled labour, need additional education and training for their employees.

Grants are not awarded for training intended to comply with the mandatory national training standards. 

Main characteristics

This measure aims at covering justifiable costs involved in providing training for employees, particularly with improvements and investments in production process change, technological modernisation, or internationalisation. The training can be general or specific. General training benefits workers and current and prospective employers, while job–specific training benefits workers and their current employers only. 

In special cases, when it is difficult to differentiate between general and specific training, the maximum grant awarded is calculated for specific training. Regardless of the type of training received, the maximum grant awarded, combined with grants approved for investment, cannot exceed 50% of justifiable costs of investment. However, the grant can be increased to up to 70% of eligible costs under certain circumstances. Points can increase by 10% if the training is carried out with workers with disabilities and by another 10% points if the grant is given to medium-sized enterprises. It can be increased by 20% points if the grant is given to small and micro–entrepreneurs.

In 2017, additional attention was given to improve the employability and competitiveness of participants. That means that participants are trained for work on various jobs and working processes deemed to have a high demand for that type of skills and knowledge in the nearly future. As mentioned earlier, the Yearly Report for 2018 by the Croatian Employment Service, explains on page 36 the main users of the measure. 

Funding

  • National funds

Involved actors

National government
Funding.
Public employment services
Administration

Effectiveness

According to estimations by the Croatian Employment Service, the number of employees who have participated in the measure has varied in the few last years from 350 to 600 per year with a tendency to decrease. The figures can only be estimated because all participants in education and training are registered as one group and are not specified per particular forms of education and training. According to the annual report for 2019 of the Croatian Employment Service (p. 8), in 2019 there were 996 new entrants in training for the employed provided by the Croatian Employment Service. Total number of participants was 1,221 (p. 37). According to the same source for 2018, there were 375 new entrants in training for the employed provided by the Croatian Employment Service. According to the annual report for 2017 by the Croatian Employment Service, in 2017 there were only 200 new entrants in training for the employed provided by the Croatian Employment Service. In 2016, there were 504 new participants in training courses for the employed provided by the Croatian Employment Service, which is slightly lower than in 2015, when there were 536 registered participants.

Strengths

This measure fosters the provision of increased skills and knowledge in the form of employee training. The measure helps to ensure that the workforce is better equipped to respond to the needs of both individual employers and the Croatian labour market as a whole. Moreover, it promotes the inclusion of persons with disabilities and provides incentives to SMEs to invest and modernise while also upgrading the skills of their workforce.

Weaknesses

This measure fosters general and specific training, but according to the information from various Open Universities and other providers of adult education (particularly Zagreb Open University) it is more often used to provide general rather than specific training. Moreover, the decision on the type of training received is entrusted to employers and not to employees themselves. The measure has been criticised for encouraging the employment of people with no experience or adequate qualifications, and yet subsequently subsidising their general rather than specific education. There are also significant challenges in terms of regulation as employers may have a preference for employing suboptimal workers temporarily to receive the grant.

Croatia faces serious challenges in regards to matching educational programmes with the labour market while ensuring the quality of provision across all educational sectors. Work-based learning and career guidance across secondary and tertiary education are lacking while employers' engagement with vocational education and training, and secondary and tertiary education is low. The outdated vocational education and training system is undergoing reform in the form of piloting new school curricula. The implementation of the Croatian Qualifications Framework and the Strategy on Education, Science and Technology is pending but should improve educational outcomes and align them with labour market needs. Thus, Croatia should implement measures to improve the labour market relevance and quality of education outcomes by modernising the qualification systems, by putting in place quality assurance mechanisms and by improving school-to-work transitions, notably through strengthening vocational education and work-based learning.

The evaluation findings (CES and Ipsos Puls, 2016) suggest that this measure needs substantial redesigning, as for example re-examining of goals, as well as a significant change in its implementation method. Issues with this measure are present in all three levels of participants (the CES, educational institutions and unemployed) who are all aware of them and have no trouble reporting them. Labour market demands, the fluctuation of the employed and unemployed, trends in the everyday circumstances of the labour market example: demand for service industry workers due to increased tourism), as well as the statistical analyses produced by the Croatian Employment Service and/or the Croatian Bureau of Statistics are the primary instigators and indicators of the required direction for educational programmes, retraining programmes, further education programmes and training for the unemployed. In addition, to the mentioned statistical indicators and labour market demands, educational institutions also take into account the interest expressed by individuals in particular training programmes, as well as employer enquiries, in an attempt to anticipate future labour market demands. This evaluation covered the period 2011-2013, the new similar evaluation for the period 2014-2019 is planned for 2021.  Future evaluation will enable better insight into the strengths and weaknesses of the mentioned measure. 

Exempel

The City of Novska, more (in Croatian) in http://novska.hr/hr/gospodarstvo/natjecaji/izgradnja-proizvodnih-kapaciteta-msp-i-ulaganje-u-opremu-/
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