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Employment in Europe

Although youth unemployment may be quite high, there were more than 1,7 million job vacancies in Europe during the second quarter of 2013. How can one of them be yours?

Of course, you can start by contacting your local public employment service.

There is also the EURES European Job Mobility Portal, which links together over 5,000 local public employment offices throughout Europe, connecting jobseekers with employers and offering active support services.


What age can you start working?

Under the EU-wide ban on child labour, you're not allowed to work if you are under 15 or still in full-time compulsory education – though there are one or two exceptions where you can work at 13 or 14.

There are also EU health and safety rules specifically designed to protect young people under 18. For example, they identify jobs not suitable for young people – jobs that exceed your mental or physical capacities or involve harmful exposure to dangerous substances.

EU rules on young people's working conditions.


Boost your chances

  • Take the time and effort to write a good CV

  • Make sure your online profile – on social networking sites, etc. – doesn’t work against you. Many employers now use the internet to find out more about applicants. Do a search on yourself to see what comes up.
  • Be proactive
    • contact companies directly, even if they're not advertising
    • try to make yourself stand out from the crowd
    • ask friends and acquaintances if they know of any vacancies
    • make sure all your relevant contacts know you’re available and what your particular skills are.
  • Think about taking a professional, vocational course – many companies value candidates who can offer more than just an academic background