National Consultant to conduct a Process Evaluation of the Employment Promotion Programmes implemented during 2020 – Tirana

Full Time
Posted 2 years ago

The ‘Skills Development for Employment (SD4E) programme – consolidation phase’ is supporting the Government of Albania in the national VET and Employment reform through a comprehensive approach of institutional capacity building on a macro/policy level, enabling key actors (MFE, NES/NAES and NAVETQ) to deliver coordinated and demand-driven services. Responding to national priorities and the objectives of the National Employment and Skills Strategy, this Swiss funded intervention has the ambition to make a systemic contribution where the Albanian VET system and Employment Service supply the labour market with a skilled workforce that contributes to sustainable and inclusive economic development of the country.


To achieve the programme purpose and finally the programme goal, the programme focused its efforts in three strategic fields that aim to improve the governance and quality of service provision in VET and employment promotion in Albania.


Outcome 1: The institutional capacity of key actors in VET and Employment (Ministry, NAVETQ, NAES) is strengthened

Outcome 2: The employment service portfolio is based on a balanced demand-and supply-side oriented approach

Outcome 3: A standardized Quality Assurance (QA) framework is in place that improves the image of VET and fosters linkages between school and world of work.

The project, financed by the Swiss Agency for Development and Coordination (SDC) is implemented by UNDP in partnership with the Ministry of Finance and Economics, through a participatory and consultative approach of development cooperation, fostering the sustainable development of national capacities. At the core of the intervention is the ambition to strength national key institutions in VET and Employment Promotion, through multilayer capacity building plans, the introduction of multiplier training elements, the collaborative development and roll-out of effective instruments for service delivery and innovative tools for Quality Assurance of day-to-day policy implementation.


The SD4E programme aims to support the National Agency for Employment and Skills (NAES) in optimizing its EPPs portfolio and provision, as set out in the objectives of the National Employment and Skills Strategy. The NAES aims to develop and deliver a service portfolio that is based on a balanced demand and supply oriented approach, recognizing and fostering the potential of various groups of job seekers through tailored action plans and mediation measures. 


After a thorough review of the Employment Promotion Programmes (EPP) in 2019, in terms of the degree to which they addressed the needs of the client base of NAES and the implementation procedures, in 2020, the SD4E team worked together with the working group of MoFE and NAES to finalize the legal and operational framework for the implementation of the reformed EPP packages. The five programmes proposed and approved by the Council of Ministers in 2020 are:


  1. On-the-job Training, which targets jobseekers who do not have any qualifications, and trains them at the workplace, providing a subsidy for the duration of 4 months period for all types of professions, based on an approved training plan, and supervised by a trainer of the employer; (DCM approved)
  2. Wage-subsidy, which is a one-year subsidized employment contract, where the needs of the jobseekers are matched to the profile of the employers, the wage is defined based on the market salary rate, and the duration of the subsidy is defined based on the vulnerabilities of the jobseeker. (DCM approved)
  3. Internship programme, which ensures quick transition to the labour market of the recent graduates, in the same of similar area of study of recent graduates, for a duration of 6 months. (DCM approved)
  4. Self-Employment Programme, which is a start your business programmes that provides financial grant and support for unemployed jobseekers, who have a proven, viable and marketable business idea and plan; (DCM approved)
  5. Community employment, which is a programme with a clear focus on workforce training and is designed to place the work experience offered near the labour market, and in line with the local employment opportunities, implemented in partnership with community and NGO/voluntary organizations. (DCM approved – implementation not started)


The SD4E has provided support to NAES to draft all the necessary operational guidelines and forms which will aid the implementation of these programme by the Employment Offices. During the second half of 2020, SD4E supported NAES with the implementation of these programmes.


More recently, the SD4E programme has supported the MFE to design new employment promotion programmes which target those who have recently become unemployed due to the COVID-19 crises.


This assignment relates to the review of the implementation process and approach of the reformed EPPs portfolio, in close consultation with all the internal implementation structures of NAES, the employers, the jobseekers, and non-public bodies who represent vulnerable groups of unemployed jobseekers. The review is expected to provide evidence-based information that is credible, reliable and useful for the On-the-job training, Wage Subsidy, Internship programmes and the programmes which target the recently laid-off workforce due to COVID-19, namely, DCM nr. 17 and DCM nr. 608.


The scope of this evaluation will include an examination of the process, i.e. the way the EPP was implemented and the main focus will be to review operational and implementation issues to answer the following questions: Are the programmes implemented as per the guidelines? And Are there better ways of approaching the implementation issues. The evaluation will try to identify conceptual and operational bottlenecks and weaknesses and make recommendations for improved performance. The process review will also determine whether the EPPs were implemented as designed, assess implementation and suggest amendment.


The process evaluation will focus on the following main areas: 1. Eligibility criteria and targeting efficiency for both employers and unemployed jobseekers; 2. Type and level of financing; 3. Information and application procedures 4. Matching and approval procedures; 5. Financing procedures; 6. Monitoring procedures. During the evaluation process, the consultant is expected to conduct desk review, in-depth interviews with the main stakeholders and quick surveys with the beneficiaries of the programmes (employers and jobseekers)


In relation to this assignment, under the guidance of the Programme Specialist and the Programme Coordinator, the consultant is expected to carry out the following tasks:


  1. Desk-review of the regulatory and operational framework which guides the implementation of the EPPs in Albania: The Decisions of the Council of Ministers, the approved operational guidelines etc.
  2. Draft and present the methodology for conducing the process evaluation, identifying all the relevant stakeholders to be involved and the tools to be used for collecting the necessary information.
  3. Organize meetings and quick surveys with all the relevant stakeholders, including the staff of the employment offices, regional structure of NAES, the relevant department in the headquarters of NAES, employers, jobseekers, organizations that represent vulnerable groups of jobseekers etc.
  4. Draft the initial process evaluation report, which will include the following: methodology, evaluation findings and recommendations.
  5. Present the initial finding to the working group of Ministry of Finance and Economy and the National Agency for Employment and Skills.
  6.  Finalize and submit the report based on the comments received by the relevant institutions.


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