Publication – Technical note

Employment services that work for young people

Helping young people acquire quality jobs that transition successfully into modern careers is of primary concern. The global economy is experiencing rapid changes: the youth unemployment rate is three times higher than that of adults. Nonetheless, there are important variations across regions. The consequences of poor transitions into a changing world of work can be observed in: long-term unemployed young people in developed countries; unemployed university graduates in emerging countries; and those in low-productivity family farms in low-income countries.

Employment services are one of the most cost-effective mechanisms to link jobseekers to available work. These services can be delivered by public, private, and non-government providers to all unemployed and active jobseekers. Assisting young people, however, often requires a combination of mainstream services and targeted approaches for a successful transition into employment.

This technical note underlines that making employment services effective involves tailoring the types and nature of these services to the different needs and circumstances of young jobseekers in accordance with their readiness for employment, as well as their personal aspirations. While pertinent to all employment services, this technical note is specific to countries with emerging and low-income economies, often faced with tight budgets, more limited institutional capacities, and a less developed offer of employment services and providers.