Recruitment support schemes available to employers when reopening

Gemma O'Connor

June 01 2021

On Friday, May 28th, the Government confirmed its reopening schedule to reopen society and the economy over the summer months. This will see hotels, B&Bs, hostels, and outdoor hospitality reopen in early June, followed by indoor hospitality in July. International travel will be permitted in August.

For any business, getting back to work after a lengthy period of inactivity is exciting. But it’s also a big challenge. And one major part of returning to work is, of course, repopulating the workplace.  

Many business owners have reported that it’s not just bringing employees back that has caused a headache but also finding staff to reopen how they would like.  

Although post-pandemic unemployment figures are still high, some people have moved back to their home country, begun a new career, or found work elsewhere. From an employer’s perspective, this raises issues in terms of finding new staff and training inexperienced staff.

Government supports

Certain Government recruitment supports are available to help employers get their staff levels back up.

Work Placement Experience Programme

The Work Placement Experience Programme (WPEP) makes work experience places available to jobseekers who have been unemployed for six months or more.

For employers, the WPEP is a welcomed opportunity to take on staff as it won’t increase labour costs. Any employees recruited under the WPEP will be paid an allowance directly by the Department of Social Protection. Host employers cannot supplement this rate of pay.  


The JobsPlus scheme is an employer incentive that encourages and rewards employers who employ jobseekers on the Live Register. For participating in this scheme, employers will be entitled to receive payments totalling €7,500 or €10,000 over a two-year period.

To participate in the JobsPlus scheme, interested employers should complete the JobsPlus Online Application for Employers.

Apprenticeship Incentivisation Scheme

The Apprenticeship Incentivisation Scheme provides financial support for apprenticeship employers who take on apprentices on all national apprenticeship programmes. Employers are eligible for a €3,000 payment for each new apprentice registered between March 1st and June 30th, 2021.

€2,000 per apprentice is payable at the point of registration with a further €1,000 payable in Quarter 3 2021 for each eligible apprentice retained on their apprenticeship. For more details on this scheme, visit the Apprenticeship Incentivisation website.

Need our help reopening your business?

Whether you have questions on the above supports or anything from the Work Safely Protocol to updating employment contracts, we can help.

For expert advice on any HR or health & safety issue, speak with one of our advisors today on 0818 923 923.

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