Luxembourgh Times

Luxembourg aims to attract foreign workers with new website

Online portal is limiting job listings to sectors most affected by staff shortages, such as IT, as country struggles to fill key posts

Luxembourg's high living costs have been cited as a reason why staff turn down job offers in the Grand Duchy

Luxembourg's high living costs have been cited as a reason why staff turn down job offers in the Grand Duchy © Photo credit: Shutterstock

Source: Redaktion

By Andréa Oldereide and Simon Martin Luxembourg has launched a new website aimed at attracting foreign staff and plugging critical gaps in the labour market, as the country grapples with a record number of vacancies and shortages in many key sectors.

Work in Luxembourg, a joint venture by the Grand Duchy’s unemployment agency ADEM and the EU's employment network EURES, aims to be a solution to filling major recruitment holes within certain sectors, such as in IT.

Recruiters in the country have long struggled to fill vacancies for key sectors such as banking and tech, with applicants frequently citing Luxembourg's high living costs as a deterrent.

As part of the plan to assist under-staffed sectors, the new website is limiting job listings for the time being to the 16 fields currently most affected by labour shortages, including IT, accounting and finance.

“It's a permanent recruitment platform targeting talent from Europe, but also from all over the world. This is what differentiates it from the ADEM platform,” Christiane Bram, European project manager for ADEM, told the Luxemburger Wort.

More than 2,800 jobs are currently on offer on the website, Bram said, with several hundred candidates registering on the portal since its official launch last March.

Despite the Grand Duchy’s financial sector representing a quarter or more of the country’s overall economy, companies say it remains a battle to attract staff to the Grand Duchy.

The same dilemma is also faced by EU institutions and agencies based in the country.

EU staff working outside Brussels get a higher pay if they work in countries where the cost of living is higher, but this is not the case for some of the 14,000 EU workers based in Luxembourg.

The EU's budget watchdog, the Luxembourg-based European Court of Auditors, last year sent a strongly-worded letter to the Commission saying it was “absolutely necessary” to raise the salary of EU staff in Luxembourg if it is to lure people to fill posts.

However, Luxembourg lacks the means to raise pay for EU staff working in the Grand Duchy, Foreign Minister Jean Asselborn told parliament in May, who added that responsibility lies with the European Commission. In April Brussels halted plans to raise salaries for Luxembourg staff, cautious to spend more money at a time that the war in Ukraine has caused costs to spike.

Last month, the number of jobs available through Luxembourg’s unemployment agency reached a record high, as the country continues to grapple with recruiting and retaining talent.

Almost 13,600 jobs were open at the end of last month – a record number that is 40% higher than at the same point last year, ADEM said.

It is the third consecutive month that ADEM listed a record number of open jobs. In June, more than 4,200 new jobs became available – 9% more than the number of new adverts in the same month of 2021.