Innovation grant

The objective of innovation grants is to facilitate innovative companies in business development to hire staff. The Directorate of Labour cooperates with the Ministry of Industries and Innovation in this joint project.

An innovation grant involves a tripartite recruitment agreement between The Directorate of Labour, a company and a jobseeker for jobs in innovation and business development. The company commits to hire a jobseeker registered at The Directorate of Labour for up to six months who is actively seeking employment, and pays wages according to valid collective agreements. The Directorate of Labour awards a grant equal to the amount of basic unemployment benefits proportional to the employee’s employment ratio, and in addition an 11.5% counter-contribution to a pension fund.

The aim of an innovation grant is to: 

  • Support innovation and development in companies.
  • Establish a connection between jobseekers and companies.
  • Support entrepreneurs with innovation projects.
  • Support jobseekers with finding employment.


Conditions for an innovation grant are the following:

  • The company must be operational.
  • The company has already one full-time employee.
  • There is a significant innovation / development in the project for which the jobseeker is hired.
  • The jobseeker must be registered and actively seeking employment with The Directorate of Labour.
  • Hiring a jobseeker means increasing the number of employees at the company.
  • Projects do not distort domestic competition in the relevant field.


  • An employer applies for an innovation grant on the Directorate of Labour’s website. Click here to enter the website.

  • An assessment group created by The Directorate of Labour and The Ministry of Industries and Innovation reviews the applications and assesses whether they fulfill the necessary requirements.

  • The Ministry of Industries and Innovation’s project manager sends a response electronically to applicants with information on whether the project will be processed further. The Directorate of Labour receives a copy of the response.

  • If the application is approved, the employer contacts The Directorate of Labour, and registers the job which was electronically accepted. Click here for instructions.
  • The Directorate of Labour assists in the search for an employee who has the education, experience or skills required. An innovation grant can be awarded to hire anyone who is registered and actively seeking employment with The Directorate of Labour.

  • A jobseeker can not commence employment until a tripartite agreement on an innovation grant has been reached with a job counsellor at The Directorate of Labour.

  • A copy of a signed employment contract between an employer and an employee in accordance with the relevant collective agreements must be submitted. The maximum duration of the contract is 6 months. When 5 months have passed, the company can apply for an extension of 6 months.

  • The contract is no longer valid and payments will be cancelled if a jobseeker ceases work for the employer for any reason during contract’s validity period.

  • The period of employment for which an employer has been awarded a grant is not considered to be an accrual period.
    A jobseeker is de-registered from the unemployment registry during the employment period.

  • When the project is over (after six or twelve months,) the employer submits a final report about the project, with information on whether, and then how the goals were achieved, and whether the employee has been employed indefinitely. Click here to obtain the final report form.



The Directorate of Labour has adopted a new payment system for recruitment grants. All invoices regarding Innovation grants are now on Employers’ My Pages on the Directorate of Labour's website. Further instructions can be found here: Instructions for settlements on account of an innovation grant.

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