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Preparatory Action: "REACTIVATE" Intra-EU job mobility scheme for unemployed 35+ VP/2017/012
Deadline: 23 Jun 2017   CALL EXPIRED

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1. INTRODUCTION - BACKGROUND 1.1. Programme/Legal base

This call covers a Preparatory Action requested by the European Parliament within the meaning of Article 54(2)(b) of Regulation (EU, EURATOM) 2015/1929 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 28 October 2015 amending Regulation (EU, EURATOM) No 966/2012 on the financial rules applicable to the general budget of the Union.

The preparatory action is called "Reactivate" and is aimed to test an intra-EU labour market activation measure to support the inclusion of EU unemployed citizens aged 35+ in the labour market.

1.2. Background

Since the outbreak of the financial and economic crisis, unemployment has been particularly high among young people and long-term unemployed in most EU Member States leading to a sharp deterioration in their labour market. The age group over 35 has also been severely touched by the crisis and the job destruction, in particular those affected by lay-offs as a consequence of business downsizing, industrial decline, globalisation and delocalisation of manufacturing activities.

Many workers, with strong skills based on work experience, find themselves excluded from the labour market given the lack of job opportunities in their regions or countries. Other long-term unemployed people generally characterised by low employability and/or multiple disadvantages have also been strongly affected e.g. workers with low or redundant skills or qualifications, young people and older workers (>50 years old), persons with disabilities and disadvantaged minorities.

Those cohorts are often supported through national active labour market measures (ALMPs) (e.g. vocational training and re-skilling, self-employment schemes, etc.) but their chances of faster work inclusion depend often on both their participation in national learning/training programmes and the job opportunities available in a limited geographical job market. ALMPs have a positive effect on people by helping them to move from unemployment to employment and also to find better quality jobs and improve their skills but their coverage varies widely between Member States ranging from around 5% to 50% or more and overall EU coverage has declined since 20091.

At the same time, there are many vacancies across Europe that remain unfilled due to skills shortages, but the potential of intra-EU labour mobility, combined with up- skilling and inclusion measures to help unemployed adults, remains under-exploited.

In the light of the above, the European Parliament proposed a new intra-EU job mobility scheme called "Reactivate", in the form of a preparatory action. The scheme aims to support unemployed citizens in the 35+ age group, including long-term unemployed, to help them finding a job or apprenticeship (minimum 6 month duration) or traineeships (minimum 3 month duration) in another Member State.

Building on the features of the "Your first EURES job" (YFEJ) mobility scheme2 (help young jobseekers under 36), "Reactivate" aims to be a pilot extension of that scheme. Similar to YFEJ, it will be featured as an intra-EU labour market activation measure, combining tailor-made recruitment, matching and placement services with financial support for jobseekers and employers (SMEs).

 

2. ECONOMIC AND POLICY OUTLOOK

President Juncker stressed in his political guidelines that this Commission will promote labour mobility not only as a right to free movement of workers, but also as an economic opportunity - especially in the face of persistent vacancies, skills mismatches and globalised economy challenges.

The EU's economy continues its expansion with nearly all Member States reporting increasing output, although growth remains uneven. In 20163,the EU employment rate for 20-64 year-olds has increased consistently for two and a half years now. At 70,8%, it is just above its 2008 level, but remains more than 4 pp below the Europe 2020 target of 75% for people aged 20-64. Large disparities in employment rates remain: in many Member States, employment rates have still some way to go to recover from the crisis ranging, for example, from 56% in Greece to 81% in Sweden.

The unemployment rate in the EU continued steady but shows moderate decline since mid-2013 to its lowest recorded rate (8.2%) since February 2009 for all age groups, still affecting around 20.1 million people in the EU. Rates decreased in twenty-four Member States, but increased in four Member States over the year to December 2016 (CY, IT, EE and DK).

Long-term unemployment (unemployment duration in excess of one year) remains an important challenge in spite of being receding for more than two years. It still affects about 9.3 million Europeans, including 5.9 million in unemployment for more than two years. Still, the overall unemployment rate remains high and particularly so in certain countries, with Spain (18.4%)and Greece (23%) registering the highest rates.

Moreover, despite public perceptions, labour mobility is low in the European Union. Only around 3.7% of the EU population aged between 15 and 64 years are living in an EU Member State other that their country of birth (mobile EU people) representing around 11,3 million people4. EU-28 movers are in general younger than nationals. Evidence-based analysis shows that high unemployment and low labour mobility within and between countries co-exist with skills and labour shortages in some countries and regions. Intra-EU labour mobility can help to address labour market imbalances and improve labour market's efficiency. It can contribute to improving the allocation of resources and serve as an adjustment mechanism for unbalanced labour markets whilst enabling economies to cope better with economic shocks.

Several EU legal and operational initiatives already focus on supporting the exercise of the individual right to free movement of EU citizens. The most relevant are the following (mainly for workers, employers and students):

 Clarification and completion of articulation of rights (Enforcement Directive on free movement of workers making information and legal advice tools available for migrant workers; recognition of qualifications, supplementary pension’s rights5). Other legislative instruments are currently being revised and/or consolidated such a proposal on the revision of the Posting of Workers Directive, the revision of the Social Security Coordination rules or the creation of the European Pillar of Social Rights (a framework to screen the employment and social performance of Members and to strengthen the process of convergence across Europe6).

  •   EURES7 (European Employment Services), i.e. the network between the Public Employment Services of Member States, other member organisations (social partners) and the European Commission, giving information and assistance to job seekers and employers on respectively the available job vacancies and living and working conditions in Member States as well as on matching these jobs vacancies with profiles of job seekers interested in finding employment in another EU country.

  •   The EURES Regulation8 to reinforce the organisation and activities of the EURES network. It aims at improving the transparency of the European labour market, facilitating online skills-based matching across borders, enhancing workers' access to mobility support services across the Union and reinforcing cooperation and information exchange on mobility. This is a key EU instrument for promoting the opportunities free movement of workers offers in accordance with Article 45 TFEU.

  •   Drop'pin, a web-based platform embedded in the EURES portal that connects young people with training, up-skilling and mobility opportunities across Europe offered directly by employers, SMEs and NGOs in order to boost their employability and skills.

  •   Support mobility programmes for young students (Erasmus+), for entrepreneurs (Erasmus for entrepreneurs) or for young jobseekers (YFEJ).

  •   Other EU information platforms such as Your Europe, Europe Direct or Solvit.

The EURES Regulation in particular is a key instrument to achieve the reform and modernisation of EURES. It introduces obligations to set up systems in Member States to open up the network to other actors than the public employment services, to provide access to mobility support services in Member States, to increase transparency on job vacancies on the European labour markets and to improve the information exchange on labour shortages across the EU.

Besides the above EU instruments, the Commission proposal for a Council Recommendation on long-term unemployment9 calls on Member States to identify jobseekers' needs (individual assessment) and to propose them a job integration plan. This should consist of a tailor-made plan, involving measures such as mentoring, job search support, further training, health care or family support. It should be delivered through a single point of contact to ensure the continuity and consistency of the support.

 

 

3. THE POTENTIAL OF EU JOB MOBILITY SCHEMES

In spite of the measures in place as above, before the kick-start of Reactivate in 201610 there was no EU initiative to address specifically the needs of the age group over 35 willing to experience cross border mobility for finding employment or a work trial in another Member State. The business communities in Member States, and in particular the small and medium-sized companies (SMEs), may also find interest in having access to a wide pool of mobile workers and enhanced support to help them address skills shortages and skill mismatches.

The EURES network already provides information and placement support to all jobseekers interested in moving and working in another Member State, irrespective of the age group. At Member State level this support is often complementary to national activation measures implemented by the Public Employment Services (PES).

However, many Member States have not yet equipped their Public Employment Services fully with tailor-made services and financial support measures adapted to the individual needs of jobseekers and employers interested in intra-EU labour mobility.

3.1. The example and lessons from YFEJ

The Commission tested the YFEJ mobility scheme during three consecutive budget years (2011-2013) as a preparatory action. The scheme aimed to help young EU-28 citizens aged 18-30 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 workers in another EU country for their hard-to-fill vacancies. The scheme combined the provision of information, recruitment, matching and placement services with EU financial support, based on a mix of simplified cost options and reimbursement of actual declared costs. A total of fifteen projects were selected through three calls for proposals with an overall budget of ca EUR 12 Mio. All projects together resulted in 4251 work placements.

The findings of the YFEJ interim evaluation (2014) outline in particular the relevance, EU added value and complementarity of the scheme with EURES. A study on the YFEJ mobility scheme and options for future EU measures on youth intra-EU labour mobility was completed in December 2016. The study comprised both a retrospective and a prospective dimension. Under the retrospective dimension, the study carried out the ex-post evaluation of the YFEJ mobility scheme, building on the findings of the interim evaluation. Under the prospective dimension, the study examined potential future policy options to support youth intra-EU labour mobility for the European Commission. The ex-post evaluation strengthened the conclusions of the interim evaluation and pinpointed the need to upscale the scheme and improve its operational capacity for gaining effectiveness and efficiency. The options for the future varied from the continuation of the current management model (baseline) up to the inclusion within one of the existing EU mobility programmes e.g. Erasmus + or the ESF. A report will be made public in the course of 2017.

As of 2014, YFEJ is continued as a Targeted Mobility Scheme under the EU Programme for Employment and Social Innovation11, covering the EU/EFTA countries (EU 28, Norway and Iceland) and the age group 18-35. Four projects are currently rolling on, based in consortia led by the EURES members in Sweden, Italy, Germany and France. Their overall quantitative target is to ensure at least 3600 work placements until the end of 2018.

 

3.2. Improving access to intra-EU labour markets

In order to tackle intra-EU mobility challenges, jobseekers - low skilled or long-term unemployed people in particular - need a package of support services to succeed their endeavour. Both YFEJ and "Reactivate" are conceived as inclusive schemes. They can play the role of intra-EU active labour measures in support of workers and employers contributing to a more effective implementation of the EURES Regulation, notably the strengthening of the provision of support services12. "Reactivate" in particular can offer the age group 35+ an unprecedented opportunity to benefit from tailor-made employment support, acquire diversified knowledge and skills, learn new languages and strengthen their EU citizenship values.

 

 

4. OBJECTIVES – PRIORITIES – TYPE OF ACTION AND EXPECTED RESULTS

IMPORTANT NOTICE

Guidelines on the implementation of the action are laid down in the following annexes:

ANNEX I: Implementing Guidelines
ANNEX II: Financial Guidelines for Applicants

4.1 Objectives - Priorities

The objective of the call is to ensure the continuity of the preparatory action for the second year. The action aims to test the feasibility of an intra-EU job mobility scheme for the age group above 35 for the placement of EU citizens over 35 years in jobs, traineeships or apprenticeships in an EU country other than their country of residence.

The action will prioritise citizens who are in a vulnerable situation in the labour market, notably unemployed people, including long-term unemployed.

Projects can cover all economic sectors and types of occupations, though specific sectors may be given priority by the applicant organisations in accordance with the demand side or the supply side needs.

Applicant organisations are free to choose the activities, methods and tools etc. to implement their action, on condition that they comply with the mandatory framework for the provision of assistance and financial support to target groups laid down in Annexes I and II.

4.2 Type of action

All projects under this call shall be named "Reactivate" (mandatory).

Applicant organisations are invited to find inspiration from YFEJ mobility scheme to elaborate the concept of their projects for "Reactivate" and the corresponding set of measures13.

 

The action supported by the projects shall

  •   carry out outreach and information activities towards target groups and in particular to employers and other stakeholder organisations interested in sharing opportunities, offers or job vacancies with the consortium;

  •   provide information on the Reactivate work opportunities and support available to the EU citizens over 35 years;

  •   establish cooperation with other organisations willing to act as information multipliers on Reactivate e.g. trade unions, employers' associations, chambers of commerce, vocational and education organisations, etc.

  •   develop and deliver a comprehensive, tailor-made package of mobility services, combining customized activation measures with direct financial support to both the target group of EU citizens over 35 years of age and employers (in particular SME's);

  •   include at least, as activation measures within this package, information and assistance with offers and vacancies, matching these with candidates and the preparation of the placement/recruitment in a number of Member States involving jobs, apprenticeships and/or traineeships;

  •   provide one or more items of direct financial support to both the target group of EU citizens over 35 years of age and employers (in particular SME's) in accordance with the five pre-defined items in this call (Annex I);

  •   test the feasibility of the services and support measures above also for placement of candidates in traineeships and/or apprenticeships in another country, having regard to the diversity (or lack) of regulatory frameworks at national level (notably for open market opportunities). For those placements, applicant organisations could identify one or more economic sector(s) and/or country(ies) offering such vacancies and provide support services adapted to the specificity and needs of both candidates and employers. The scope of the action in terms of traineeship and apprenticeship placements could represent a small percentage of the overall number of expected placements.

In the light of the above, applicants shall submit proposals focusing on

  •  Job placements and also on at least one of following types of placements:
  •  Traineeships14
  •  Apprenticeships

If applicant organisations do not deal with traineeships and/or apprenticeships or are not experienced in this field, they could include in the project other public or private co-applicant or associate organisation(s) with proven knowledge and experience in this domain e.g. Vocational Education and Training (VET) providers or Chambers of Commerce. The projects may include further measures such as post-placement support (welcome and integration services) and other tailor-made support like coaching packs for trainees and apprentices, combined (or not) with the above mentioned direct financial support.

 

4.3 Expected outputs/results

The action is quality-oriented and outcome-driven: the scheme aims to deliver quality placements to ensure candidates' skills development/reactivation and employability. Applications shall clearly indicate the expected number and nature of placements (jobs, traineeships or apprenticeships) as well as the targeted recruiting sectors.

4.4 Monitoring

The awarded projects shall monitor closely their activities. They will report results on the basis of a minimum number of common indicators on outreach activities, the measures provided to the target groups, the direct financial support provided and the resulting placements. Applicant organisations shall provide regularly (in principle twice a year), either directly to the Commission or to an authorised contractor, data in accordance with the list indicated in Annex I. This data may be analysed and compiled in a monitoring report.

The Commission will monitor the implementation of the preparatory action as a whole and promote networking among the project beneficiaries. To that end, at least three meetings will be held with the Commission in Brussels (one meeting every six months). The purpose is to provide guidance and take stock of progress made. The lead applicant must nominate the project coordinator, who will participate in the networking meetings with the Commission. The Commission may also be invited to participate in at least one strategic meeting of the consortia e.g. the project kick-off meeting.

Lead applicants may also be invited to other ad hoc meetings or events during the lifetime of the action. These venues can be an opportunity for raising awareness to the action and disseminating information.

The estimated budget should include provisions for participation in the monitoring activities and meetings above as well as in, at least, one EU level event (for further information, see section 16).

 

5. TIMETABLE

Deadline for proposal submission: 23 June 2017

Stages

Date or indicative period

Publication of the call for proposals

March 2017

Deadline for submitting applications

23 June 2017

Evaluation period (indicative)

July – September 2017

Signature of grant agreement (indicative)

September - October 2017

Starting date of the action (indicative)

November 2017 – January 2018

5.1. Starting date and duration of the projects

The actual starting date of the action will either be the first day following the date when the last of the two parties signs the grant agreement, the first day of the month following the date when the last of the two parties signs or a date agreed upon between the parties. In the interest of applicant organisations, they are invited to indicate their starting month preferably within the period November 2017 - January 2018.

Applicants should note that if their project is selected, they may receive the grant agreement after the start date of the action that they have indicatively set in the application form. It is therefore advisable to number the months in the work programme instead of indicating the name of the months, for ease of reference.

Any expenditure incurred before the signature of the Grant Agreement will be at the applicant’s risk. No expenditure can be incurred before the deadline for submission.

The indicative duration of projects should be 18 months.

 

6. AVAILABLE BUDGET AND CO-FINANCING RATE

6.1. Available Budget

The total budget earmarked for the EU co-financing of projects under this call is estimated at EUR 2,500,000.

The Commission expects to fund 1 to 4 projects. For illustrative purposes, the Union funding per project is indicatively estimated to be not less than EUR 500,000.

The Commission reserves the right not to distribute all the funds available.

6.2. Co-financing rate

Under this call for proposals, the EU grant may not exceed 95% of the total eligible costs of the actions. The applicants must guarantee their co-financing of the remaining amount covered by the applicants' own resources of from other sources other than the European Union budget15.

 

7. ADMISSIBILITY REQUIREMENTS

  •   Applications must be sent no later than the deadline for submission referred to in section 5;

  •   Applications (application form including budget and description of the action including work plan) must be submitted using the electronic submission system available at https://webgate.ec.europa.eu/swim, and by sending a signed, printed version of the application form and the other afore-mentioned documents by post or courier service (one original dossier and one copy; see also section 12)..

Failure to comply with the above requirements will lead to the rejection of the application.

Applicants are encouraged to submit their project proposal in English, French or German in order to facilitate treatment of the proposals and speed up the evaluation process. It should be noted, however, that proposals in all official languages of the EU will be accepted. In this case, applications should be accompanied by an executive summary in English, French or German (checklist point 3).

 

8. ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA
8.1. Eligibility of applicants (lead and co-applicants) and affiliated entities

 

a) Place of establishment

Legal entities properly established and registered in the following countries are eligible as lead applicants and co-applicants:

- EU Member States

 

b) Type of entities

To be eligible, lead applicants must be a:

  • - public or private employment service or an organisation specialised in work-based placements whose core activity is the provision of information, recruitment, matching, placement and pre- and post- placement support to jobseekers, job changers , trainees, apprentices and employers.

To be eligible, co-applicants must:

  • - public or private organisation, including social partners, providing the same services as lead applicants and/or complementary customer- oriented services in other support fields such as information, training, education, career guidance, mentoring, legal advice, integration support or other equivalent.

Applicants and co-applicants may be profit or non-profit making entities c) Consortia17

To be eligible, actions must have the involvement of a minimum of three (3) organisations [i.e. lead applicant and at least two (2) co-applicants] established in at least three (3) different Member States.

If the lead applicant is not considered to be eligible, the application will be rejected.

If a co-applicant is considered not to be eligible, this organisation will be removed from the consortium and the eligibility of the modified consortium will be re-evaluated. In addition, the costs that are allocated to a non-eligible co-applicant will be removed from the budget. If the modified consortium is still eligible, the application will be evaluated on that basis. If the application is accepted for funding, the work plan will have to be adapted as appropriate.

 

d) Affiliated entities

Legal entities having a legal or capital link with applicants, which is neither limited to the action nor established for the sole purpose of its implementation and which satisfy the eligibility criteria, may take part in the action as affiliated entities, and may declare eligible costs.

For that purpose, applicants shall identify such affiliated entities in the application form.

8.2. Eligible activities

a) Geographical location

To be eligible, applications must demonstrate that the proposed activities will be implemented in at least the three (3) Member States where the applicant organisations are established.

b) Types of activities

The grant will finance the activities indicated in section 4 of this document. c) Coreactivities

The following activities are considered to be core activities and may not be subcontracted:

- Project coordination and management. d) Financial support to third parties

Financial support to third parties as defined in point 3 of the Financial Guidelines is eligible under this call provided that the overall amount allocated to this type of support does not exceed EUR 30 000 per third party (see also section 16.1.3). For further details on applicable ceilings, an exhaustive list of types of activities for which a third party may receive financial support and related award criteria please refer to Annex I.

 

 

9. EXCLUSION CRITERIA

Applicants (lead and co-applicants) must sign a declaration on their honour certifying that they are not in one of the situations referred to in article 106(1) and 107.1(b) and (c) of the Financial Regulation concerning exclusion and rejection from the procedure respectively, using the relevant form attached to the application form available at https://webgate.ec.europa.eu/swim/external/displayWelcome.do.

The same exclusion criteria apply to any affiliated entities.

Only proposals which comply with the requirements of the above eligibility and exclusion criteria will be considered for further evaluation.

 

 

 

10. SELECTION CRITERIA

10.1. Financial capacity

Applicants (lead applicants and co-applicants) must have access to solid and adequate funding to maintain their activities for the period of the action and to help finance it as necessary. The verification of financial capacity will not apply to public bodies.

The applicant's (lead and co-applicants) financial capacity will be assessed on the basis of the following supporting documents to be submitted with the application:

  • -  Declaration on honour (section 16, checklist, point 4).

  • -  The annual balance sheet and profit and loss accounts available from the last

    financial year (section 16, checklist, point 14).

  • -  Profit and loss accounts and balance sheet summary for the lead and co-

    applicant organisations (section 16, checklist, point 15).

  • -  For grants of EUR 750 000 or more, an audit report produced by an approved

    external auditor certifying the accounts for the last financial year available (see section 16, checklist point 19).

10.2. Operational capacity

Applicants (lead and co-applicants) must have the professional competencies as well as appropriate qualifications necessary to complete the proposed action. In particular, applicants (lead and co-applicants) must have:

  • -  a strong track record of competence and experience in the field and in particular in the type of action proposed.

  • -  the necessary operational resources (technical, management) to carry out the action.

    The operational capacity of the applicant (lead and co-applicant) to complete the proposed action must be confirmed by the submission in the proposal of the following:

  • -  A list of the main projects carried out, if any, in the last three years relating to the subject of the call (section 16, checklist, point 17);

  • -  The curriculum vitae of the persons responsible for managing the action and the persons who will perform the main tasks (section 16, checklist, point 16);

    If the lead applicant is considered not to have the required financial or operational capacity, the application as a whole will be rejected. If a co-applicant is considered not to have the required financial or operational capacity, this co-applicant will be removed from the consortium and the application will be evaluated without this co- applicant18. In addition, the costs that are allocated to the non-selected co-applicant will be removed from the budget. If the application is accepted, the work programme will have to be adapted as appropriate.

    Only proposals which comply with the requirements of the above selection criteria will be considered for further evaluation.

18 This includes a re-evaluation of the eligibility of the modified consortium.

 

11. AWARD CRITERIA

The proposals which fulfil the eligibility and selection criteria will be assessed according to the following award criteria:

 Relevance of the proposal to the call (max. 25 points)

  •   The degree to which the proposal meets the objectives of the call, in particular the minimum requirements for ensuring application by the action of the common scheme as indicated in Section 16 below and in Annex I.

  •   The degree to which the set of activation measures proposed for the action is suitable in light of the specific needs and obstacles assumed to affect the target group(s) of the 35+ age group and employers specifically chosen in the proposal.

  •   The innovative dimension of the package of services, combining activation measures and items of direct financial support, in light of the objectives of the call.

 Quality of the project design and implementation methodology (max. 25 points)

  •   Clarity and consistency of the proposed project.

  •   The coherence of the distribution of tasks, responsibilities, resources and management tools among the members of the consortium (lead and co-

    applicants).

  •   The extent to which the methodology and proposed activities are adequate to ensure an efficient delivery of services to the target groups.

  •  The methods and procedures for securing effective and prompt direct financial support for target groups, for monitoring the overall budget expenditure for all forms of financial support and for ensuring sound financial

    management.

  •   The measures to ensure adequate quality control relating to the information

    and assistance with offers and vacancies, matching these with candidates and

    the preparation of the placement /recruitment.

  •   The consistency of the planned timetable for activities.

     Expected impact of the proposal (max. 20 points)

  •   The added value, geographical coverage, transnational dimension and expected impact of the project at both national and EU level.

  •   The extent to which the proposed action is likely to ensure the project's expected number of work placements in other Member States, in light of inter alia the distribution of the roles of the members in the partnership involved with the scheme and the resources allocated for its implementation.

     Visibility of the action (max. 20 points)

  •   The quality and potential multiplier effect of the outreach activities towards the target groups.

  •   The appropriateness of the activities involving evaluation of the project and the dissemination of its final results.

  •  The financial quality of the proposal and the cost-effectiveness of the operation (max. 10 points)
  •   Clarity and consistency of the estimated budget description and justification of costs.

  •   The clarity, consistency and soundness of the calculation of the funding modalities applicable to financial support to third parties (i.e. jobseekers/ employers).

  •   The degree to which the amount of the requested grant is proportional to the scale and scope of the project.

    Applications will be ranked according to the total score awarded. Taking into account the available budget, the proposals with the highest total scores will be recommended for award, on condition that:

 The total score reaches at least of 70% of the total available points.

 

12. LEGAL COMMITMENTS

In the event of a grant awarded by the Commission, a grant agreement, drawn up in euro and detailing the conditions and level of funding, will be sent to the beneficiary, or to the coordinator in the case of multi-beneficiary grant agreements.

The 2 copies of the original agreement must be signed by the beneficiary, or the coordinator in the case of multi-beneficiary grant agreements, and returned to the Commission immediately. The Commission will sign it last.

The grant agreement may include corrections and deletion of ineligible costs or activities made by the Commission – therefore the applicant should carefully read the whole agreement before signing and returning the copies to the Commission.

A model Grant Agreement is published on the Europa website under the relevant

call: http://ec.europa.eu/social/main.jsp?catId=629&langId=en.
Please note that the award of a grant does not establish an entitlement for

subsequent years.

 

 

13. FINANCIAL PROVISIONS

Details on financial provisions are laid out in the Financial Guidelines for Applicants and the model Grant Agreement, both published on the Europa website under the relevant call: http://ec.europa.eu/social/main.jsp?catId=629&langId=en.

The above-mentioned documents, together with Annex I (Implementing Guidelines) to the present call for proposals provide more details for the applicant organisations, especially guidelines for presenting the proposals' provisional budget along with the rules governing which categories of expenditure are eligible and which are not.

14. SUBMISSION PROCEDURES

The procedure to submit proposals electronically is explained in section 14 of the "Financial Guidelines for Applicants". Before starting, please read carefully the SWIM user manual: http://ec.europa.eu/employment_social/calls/pdf/swim_manual_en.pdf

Once the application form is filled in, applicants must submit it both electronically and in hard copy, before the deadline set in section 5 above.

 

The SWIM electronic application form is available until midnight on the day of the submission deadline. Since the applicants must first submit the form electronically, and then print, sign and send it by post service or hand delivery by the submission deadline, it is the applicant's responsibility to ensure that the appropriate postal or courier services are locally available on the day of the deadline.

The hard copy of the proposal must be duly signed and sent in duplicate (one marked “original” and one marked “copy”), including all documents listed in section 16, by the deadline (the postmark or the express courier receipt date serving as proof) to the following address:

European Commission
Call for proposals VP/2017/012 – DG EMPL.D.1 J-27 – 05/050
B-1049 Brussels
BELGIUM

 

Please send your proposal by registered post, express courier service or by hand delivery only. Proof of posting or express courier receipt should be kept as it could be requested by the European Commission in cases of doubt regarding the date of submission.

Hand-delivered proposals must be received by the European Commission before 4 p.m. on the date of the deadline for submission as indicated in section 5 at the following address:

 

European Commission
Service central de réception du courrier Call for proposals VP/2017/012 – DG EMPL.D.1 Avenue du Bourget, 1
B-1140 Evere
BELGIUM

 

At that time the European Commission's Mail Service will provide a signed receipt which should be conserved as proof of delivery.

If an applicant submits more than one proposal, each proposal must be submitted separately.

Additional documents sent by post, by fax or by electronic mail after the deadlines mentioned above will not be considered for evaluation unless requested by the European Commission.

The applicant's attention is also drawn to the fact that incomplete or unsigned forms, hand-written forms and those sent by fax or e-mail may not be taken into consideration.

 

 

15. COMMUNICATION

The information contained in the present call document together with the Financial Guidelines for Applicants provides all the information you require to submit an application. Please read it carefully before doing so, paying particular attention to the priorities of the present call.

All enquiries must be made by e-mail only to: empl-vp-2017-012@ec.europa.eu

For any technical problems please contact: empl-swim-support@ec.europa.eu

 

Questions may be sent by to the above address no later than 10 days before the deadline for the submission of proposals.

The Commission has no obligation to provide clarifications to questions received after this date.

Replies will be given no later than 5 days before the deadline for submission of proposals. To ensure equal treatment of applicants, the Commission will not give a prior opinion on the eligibility of applicants, or affiliated entity(ies), an action or specific activities.

No individual replies to questions will be sent but all questions together with the answers and other important notices will be published (FAQ in EN) at regular intervals on the Europa website under the relevant call: http://ec.europa.eu/social/main.jsp?catId=629&langId=en.

The Commission may, on its own initiative, inform interested parties of any error, inaccuracy, omission or clerical error in the text of the call for proposals on the mentioned Europa website. It is therefore advisable to consult this website regularly in order to be informed of any updates and of the questions and answers published.

No modification to the proposal is allowed once the deadline for submission has elapsed. If there is a need to clarify certain aspects or to correct clerical mistakes, the Commission may contact the applicant for this purpose during the evaluation process. This is generally done by e-mail. It is entirely the responsibility of applicants to ensure that all contact information provided is accurate and functioning. In case of any change of contact details, please send an e-mail with the application VP reference and the new contact details to (enter e-mail address).

In the case of consortia, all communication regarding an application will be done with the lead applicant only, unless there are specific reasons to do otherwise.

Applicants will be informed in writing about the results of the selection process. Unsuccessful applicants will be informed of the reasons for rejection. No information regarding the award procedure will be disclosed until the notification letters have been sent to the beneficiaries.

 

 

16. INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE PRESENTATION OF THE PROPOSAL AND REQUIRED DOCUMENTS

16.1. Instructions for the presentation of the proposal

The application comprises an application form including the budget, a description of the action and work plan plus a series of other required documents (see section 16.2).

The description of the action and work plan must be written using the template available in SWIM (see checklist, point 12) which follows the structure of the Award Criteria indicated in section 11 (the corresponding sections in the SWIM application form can therefore be kept rather succinct). All the information related to the description of the action and the work plan must be presented in one single document. The budget must be presented using the application form in SWIM.

In the description of the action, the role of all applicants and any affiliated entities or associate organisations must be clearly explained.

In case of subcontracting any tasks comprising part of the action (see the Financial Guidelines) is foreseen, the description of the action must provide details on the tasks to be subcontracted and the reasons for doing so and these tasks must be clearly identified in the budget. Core tasks as defined in section 8.2(c) of the call cannot be subcontracted.

Proposals should include inter alia the following mandatory activities in the description of the action and the work plan and foresee the corresponding expenditure in the budget estimate.

16.1.1. Travel and subsistence costs

As indicated in section 4.4, applicant organisations must include in their budget proposal a provision to cover the costs for the participation of:

  1. the lead applicant in the meetings with the Commission in Brussels (three meetings over the lifetime of the action, and maximum two attendants/two days);

  2. the lead applicant (maximum two persons, project coordinator included) in one communication or large public event at European level during the lifetime of the project (two days). This event shall be included in the budget proposal, indicating 'EU level event in Brussels or another European city19';

  3. other staff travel and subsistence needs required by the action as, for instance, national visits or working groups with co-applicants in other project countries;

16.1.2. Online information

Applicant organisations must include an estimate of costs to create a project webpage or a dedicated website. This requirement is mandatory for the lead applicant.

Co-applicants must also ensure online information, either through a specific project webpage or through links to the lead applicants' web address.

Further information on the above is provided in Annex I.

16.1.3. Support to target groups

Applicant organisations must earmark and specify the requested amount for direct financial support to jobseekers and SMEs, as well as any other services provided to those groups (e.g. training) under the heading 'Costs of services', item 'Other services' of the estimated budget in SWIM (see section 14). The application must provide, in the description of the action, a detailed breakdown of costs per support measure and direct funding, in line with the guidelines set out in Annexes I and II.

16.1.4. Monitoring of activities

Applicant organisations must make a provision in their budget proposal for the costs of staff involved in the monitoring of activities (see section 4.4 and Annex I).

 

16.1.5. Other costs

According to the project needs, applicants may also consider budget entries to cover the costs of videoconference interviews for pre-selected candidates as well as other communication material and/or translation of online/printed contents or other eligible project needs (e.g. final evaluation).

Applicants are reminded to, in setting up the project, budget the necessary funding for the final reporting (final technical implementation report and final financial statement) to the Commission (please see Annex I).

16.2. Required documents

The table in annex includes the documents that should be provided including the documents mentioned in 16.1. Except for items 7, 10 and 1120 which can be submitted only for successful applications, please note that all other documents are necessary either for the admissibility (see section 7) or for the analysis of the eligibility (see section 8) or selection criteria (see section 10). It also indicates where originals are required. We recommend that applicants use the table as a checklist in order to verify compliance with all requirements.

While some information must be supplied using the templates available in the SWIM, other documents may need to be completed and/or attached electronically, usually either administrative documents or free format text descriptions. The SWIM application indicates in each section where SWIM templates should be used as well as which and where free format documents can be uploaded electronically.

Copies of the signed originals will be accepted for most of the documents to be submitted by the co-applicants. However, the lead applicant shall keep the original signed versions for its records, because originals may have to be submitted for certain documents at a later stage. If the lead applicant fails to submit these original documents within the deadline given by the Commission, the proposal will be rejected for lack of administrative compliance.

Regarding the compilation of the application file, it is recommended to:

1) follow the order of documents as listed in the checklist (and attach a ticked checklist as below to the proposal);

2) print the documents double-sided;
3) use 2-hole folders (do not bind or glue; stapling is acceptable).



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