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The Labour Market in Finland

Current Climate: June 2023 figures, and outlook for 3rd Quarter 2023
The current Finnish labour market shows the number of both employed and unemployed people up from a year before, with a reduction in the inactive population. The amount of unemployed foreigners increased significantly. For the 3nd Quarter 2023, employers' hiring prospects are reasonable but less positive than this time last year and the previous quarter.

Data Sources: Reported unemployment figures can vary significantly. Unemployment in Finland is monitored through two different monthly statistics; the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment compiles its data from actual job seekers registered with local employment offices, while Statistics Finland bases its findings on statistical samples.

Statistics Finland's Labour Force Survey for June 2023 reports the number of unemployed persons was 211,000, which is 12,000 higher than June 2022. The unemployment rate was 7.2%, up from 6.8% in June 2022. The number of employed persons was 2,737,000, which was 8,000 more than a year earlier.
Inactive Population: There were 1,179,000 persons aged 15 to 74 in the inactive population in June 2023, which was 12,000 fewer than one year earlier.
Source: Statistics Finland 2023

The Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment Employment Bulletin, June 2023 reported 264,700 unemployed job seekers in June 2023; this is 4,900 more than a year earlier. They accounted for 10.0% of the labour force, which is 0.1% more than a year before.
Long-term Unemployment: The Ministry's figures show 91,000 people out of work for a year or more, a decrease of 4,500 from the year before. People unemployed without interruption for more than two years numbered 49,000, which is 5,000 less than a year previously.
Education Levels: Unemployment decreased at three levels of education. The decrease was greatest among those with lower level basic education (-16%), lowest level of tertiary education (-4%), and higher level basic qualifications (-4%). Unemployment increased at other levels; most among those with level of education 'unknown' (16%), lower degree level tertiary education (10%), post-secondary non-tertiary education (10%), and higher degree level tertiary education (6%).
Unemployed Foreigners: The Ministry reports that among unemployed job seekers, foreign citizens totalled 39,600. This figure is up 6,100 from the previous year. Of the foreign unemployed job seekers, EU/EEA citizens accounted for 9,300, up 700 from the year before.
Source: Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment Employment Bulletin: June 2023
Alternative Download: VALTO: Institutional Repository for the Government - search "Employment Bulletin"

Employment Outlook:
ManpowerGroup no longer offers access to its full Employment Outlook Survey for Finland, however they do still provide brief (increasingly brief) data for Finland's Net Employment Outlook.
Q3 2023, Finland
Net Employment Outlook: +20% Down 5% from previous quarter
Employer Hiring Intentions (forecast change in number of payrolls):
Increase: data not provided
Decrease: data not provided
No change: data not provided
Don't know: data not provided
Source: ManpowerGroup

Issues for Foreign Job Seekers
In this employment climate anyone hoping to find work in Finland has to expect a challenge. Additionally, foreign job seekers should be prepared to address the following issues:

Finnish Language Skills
The biggest and most important issue for a foreigner is usually language. There are very few jobs where it is possible to work without knowing any Finnish, and for reasons of occupational safety alone it is vital to be able to communicate. Local authorities, universities and and many employers provide immigrants and their families with language training, either free or at very low cost. The level of Finnish skills necessary for a job depends greatly on the nature of the work, but on average six months of intensive language training should provide enough skill in Finnish to get by at the average workplace.
Source: thisisFINLAND

Finland sets great value on vocational training, and statutory (official) qualification requirements exist in many fields and positions. If you intend to work in Finland using a qualification gained outside Finland, it is essential that you check in advance that your foreign qualification is officially accepted in Finland.

What's the Alternative?
If you have the right to do so, starting your own business in Finland is definitely worth considering rather than fighting in an increasingly competitive job market. All you need is motivation and something saleable; the process for establishing a business is easy. Plus, if you are unable to speak Finnish but can speak English or Swedish, the language barrier referred to above is significantly reduced.
See: Entrepreneurship

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