Looking for a change in your working life

Are you looking for a change in your working life? Are you interested in a new career or education? At the Job Market, we will tell you about different options for getting a new spark into your working life.

Do you have competence that you want to develop further? You can progress in your career in the desired direction by using and developing your existing expertise. 

The Job Market Finland offers tips for developing your existing knowledge and skills.

Identify your competences

Are you aware of all your current areas of competence? A competence assessment can teach you more about yourself and highlight which skills you should develop further.   

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Complementing studies and degrees

Through universities, it is also possible to complete studies based on previously-obtained higher education qualifications and competences. These studies can often also be conveniently taken alongside work.

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On-the-job learning

Do you learn better by doing? On-the-job learning could be a good option for you. There are different ways to learn and study while working.


An apprenticeship involves training that takes place at the workplace. In other words, you get a degree by working. The apprenticeship also includes theory work days at the educational institution. Find out from the TE Office whether you can receive a pay subsidy for the duration of the apprenticeship.

Work try-out

If you want to try out whether a certain field is suitable for you or what kind of tasks are included in a profession, you can apply for a work try-out through the TE Office. The work try-out is intended for the unemployed and those working part-time.


An internship is also an important part of most vocational and higher education studies, and may be the point where you get to put the theory into practice for the first time. You should take time to choose your place, as it may be your chance to get a foot in the door.

Trainee programme

If you would like to move ahead in your own organisation, find out if your workplace offers a trainee programme.

Pay subsidy

If finding employment has been challenging due to missing areas of competence, you may be able to find employment with a pay subsidy and develop your professional competence by working. You can apply for a pay subsidy card from the TE Office and tell potential employers that you will bring part of the salary with you.


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Labour market training

You can start your own business in an accessible, low-risk way through an entrepreneurship course organised as labour market training. You can also complete a vocational qualification or a part of it as labour market training.  The trainings on offer also include the popular F.E.C training programmes. Labour market training is primarily for the unemployed.


Developing competence while unemployed

If you would like to take advantage of the opportunity to develop your competence during a period of unemployment, please familiarise yourself with independent study. Alternatively, if you only lack a small part of the qualification or are thinking of just a short supplementary course, such as a taxi course, you should familiarise yourself with the option of taking short-term studies supported by unemployment benefit.


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Is it difficult to find the right course for you? We have compiled information on different ways to study in the Job Market Finland.   

You can complete an entirely new degree or part of a degree or obtain additional competences. With labour market training, you can study a new vocational qualification or part of one. You can study on the basis of your current competence or change direction completely.

Studying these days often doesn’t involve sitting on the school bench, as there are many ways to study. These include distance or contact teaching, multiform learning and independent study, to mention a few. You can even learn a new language or a new instrument by simply using a smartphone app.

You can study whatever your age – full-time, alongside work or when you are unemployed. If you are in the integration process for immigrants, on sick leave, on retirement or on parental leave, this may affect your possibilities to study, but in any life situation it is possible to study something.


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Studying while working

If you work, you may be interested in various multiform studies or courses and the opportunity to study during job alternation leave or study leave. Multiform studies are designed to be taken alongside work, which means the amount of contact teaching is less and is focused on evenings and weekends.

Study leave practices vary from workplace to workplace, so it is worth discussing them with your employer. 


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Studying while unemployed

When unemployed, you have plenty of different possibilities to develop your own competence or try something completely new. If you are an unemployed jobseeker, it is important that you always make agreement with the TE Office in your area before starting your studies.

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There are at least as many ways to cope financially during studies as there are students. There are different alternatives for you to explore, whether you are currently unemployed, laid off, working part-time, an entrepreneur or working full-time.

When you are studying, your possible sources of income are the student financial aid paid by Kela, the salary you are paid for your work, and unemployment security. In addition, persons with a longer career history may be entitled to adult education allowance or job alternation compensation. Other alternatives include, for example, integration training, apprenticeship contract and different grants.

In addition to your salary, you may only receive one benefit at a time. Keep in mind that your salary may affect the amount of the paid benefits. There is an income limit for student financial aid, an additional income limit for adult education allowance, and even unemployment benefits are adjusted in accordance with your earned income. Furthermore, job alternation compensation is also reduced by other income you earn during your alternation leave.

In order to receive unemployment benefits, you must be registered as a jobseeker with the TE Office. As a jobseeker, you must notify the TE Office of all your studies, so that their potential impact on receiving unemployment benefits can be assessed. Please note, however, that if you cut back your working hours or quit your job because of studies, you will also lose your right to unemployment security.

Studying while unemployed

If you are unemployed, you can finance your studies either with an unemployment benefit or Kela’s student financial aid when your studies last for at least two months. Studying does not prevent you from receiving unemployment benefits if you have agreed on the studies with the TE Office. Vocational labour market training is free of cost, and you can also receive an expense allowance during the training.

Studying while working part-time

If you have a part-time job, you can finance your studies with your earned income or adjusted unemployment benefit. For studies that last for more than two months, you can also receive student financial aid from Kela or adult education allowance from the Employment Fund.

Studying during a lay-off period

If you are laid off, you have the same options for financing your studies as unemployed persons. You must register as a jobseeker with the TE Office and notify the office of your studies.

Studying as an entrepreneur

As a full-time entrepreneur, you can finance your studies with the income earned from your entrepreneurial activities, or if your studies last for over two months, you can receive student financial aid from Kela or entrepreneur’s adult education allowance. As a part-time entrepreneur, you have the same financing options as unemployed persons.

Studying while working full-time

If you have a full-time job, you can finance your studies with your earned income, adult education allowance, Kela’s student financial aid, or job alternation compensation. In addition to your salary, you may only receive one benefit at a time. Please note that your salary may affect the amount of paid benefits. Student financial aid and adult education allowance are meant for studies that last over two months.

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Social assistance

As a student, you may be entitled to basic social assistance, or income support, when the payment of your study grant has been stopped, or you have used up all of your eligibility for financial aid. You may also be entitled to social assistance during the summer, if studying is not possible, and you have not managed to secure employment. Please note that your life situation, as well as income and assets affect the amount of basic social assistance. Basic social assistance is the last-resort form of financial assistance.  

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Are you one that learns by doing? You can participate in apprenticeship training and complete a vocational or professional degree, or parts of it.

An apprenticeship involves training that takes place primarily at the workplace. In other words, you get a degree by working. If necessary, the training can be complemented with studies organised at an educational institution. The training is usually free of cost, and you will be paid a salary in accordance with the collective agreement of the field.

An apprenticeship is a fixed-term employment relationship between the training provider, the student and the workplace. An apprenticeship student must be at least 15 years of age and work at least 25 hours a week.

Finding a suitable training place

To take part in apprenticeship training, the student needs a job which they must find themselves. If you are an unemployed jobseeker, you can search the TE Services’ vacancies for open apprenticeship positions or contact interesting employers directly. If you have a job, you can ask your employer if you can complete an apprenticeship at your current workplace. When you have acquired a job, contact your closest apprenticeship operator.

The training provider will verify that the workplace is suitable as a learning environment. The workplace is also assessed in view of the safety of the student. A responsible workplace trainer is appointed from among the other employees. If all the conditions for organising the training are met, an apprenticeship contract can be signed.

Planning the studies

The student, employer and training provider will plan the contents of the apprenticeship training together. The student’s competence needs are assessed, and previously acquired competence is taken into account. The student’s work tasks, studies, demonstrations and guidance measures shall be entered into their personal competence development plan (PCDP), which will be attached to the apprenticeship contract.

Income during apprenticeship training

  • Primarily, the student will be paid a salary during apprenticeship training.
  • If your employer does not pay you a salary during the period of your theoretical studies, you may also be entitled to financial support. 
  • If you are an unemployed jobseeker, it is advisable to contact the TE Office and find out whether you are entitled to a pay subsidy for the apprenticeship period. 

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