Fiasco over multi-million job push

The Swedish government’s multi-million kronor effort to put some 8,000 unemployed university graduates back to work has been a flop. After seven months, only six degree holders have found work through the program.

The two-year project allotted 515 million kronor to help educated workers get back on the job, but the Swedish Labour Market Board said due to a poor relationship with recruitment companies the program hasn’t been successful.

“It was thought that employment firms would actively use us to place graduates at small companies around the country,” said Lars Sjöström, a spokesman with the labour board, according to Göteborgs Posten. “But we have not succeeded in coming to an agreement with the recruitment firms.”

Lars Forseth, head of recruitment firm Manpower, said he isn’t surprised the Labour Board has only been able to create six jobs. When the Board wanted Manpower to administer the country’s employment project for degree holders, the company said no.

Forseth said Manpower would be happy to help, but doesn’t want to employ additional degree holders for renting.

“We already have thousands of graduates employed at Manpower, and we don’t want to start creating an A-team and a B-team within the company where a portion of employees are subsidized by the state but not the others. It just wouldn’t work,” Forseth said.