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Factsheet for measure BE-2014-1/2671 – measures in Belgium


Reclassement professionnel

Country Belgium , applies nationwide
Time period Open ended, started on 01 January 2014
Context Restructuring Support Instruments
Type Legislations or other statutory regulations
Category Reorientation of business activities
– Matching/networking
Author Dries Van Herreweghe (Katholieke Universiteit Leuven) and Eurofound
Measure added 23 June 2022 (updated 02 November 2022)

Background information

Outplacement allows employees to find new work after their previous employment has ended. Proper outplacement allows faster re-employment, which benefits all parties involved. In general it is considered to be beneficial for all employees, but in particular for older employees and those that have been active for a long time in the same type of work.

In addition, it is also intended as a way to improve relations between the former employer and the employee that was made redundant.

Content of measure

Outplacement counsellors provide guidance and counselling services to workers to help them find a new job or to develop their own professional business. Among the services provided, one can mention the preparation for job interviews, training to update their skills. These services are usually paid by the employer. Some joint committees composed by sectoral social support outplacement costs through their sectoral social/training funds (e.g. JC 200 through CEVORA). The regional public employment offices and/or private companies specialised in outplacement services are responsible for providing the services throughout the process.

This social intervention fund finances the outplacement accompaniment following restructuring if the employer is unable to finance it himself. The repayment of the outplacement costs applies both to the business directors, faced with the company difficulties, as well to redundant workers who worked for the company up until a year before bankruptcy. Applications can be made by the bankruptcy trustee who was named by the commissioner in the judicial agreement, or by the employer in difficulty himself; the application by the employer is mandatory if approached by a worker representative. The outplacement programme is managed by a private provider accredited by the regional government.

The total budget of the fund is more than €3 million. An outplacement costs on average around €2,500 per person.

Funding is provided by the following instances: the Service Public Fédéral Emploi, Travail et Concertation Sociale, Direction générale des Relations individuelles du travail

Use of measure

1,330 employees received outplacement in 378 cases (2011 figures). The success ratio of getting people back to work is not higher or lower compared to other restructuring cases.

In 2015, some 16,442 outplacement guidance cases were identified, with 13,404 cases following individual dismissal and 3,038 following after collective dismissal. In 2016, 53% of the candidates in the outplacement were aged 45-55 years and 19% were 55+.

In 2019, a total of 13,617 outplacement guidance cases were initiated, with 11,204 among them following after individual dismissal and 2,413 after collective dismissal. In total, 25% of candidates for outplacement were younger than 45 years old, 48% between 45-54 years old and 27% 55+.

According to Federgon the government wants to favour a rapid reintegration of redundant workers in the labour market and underlines the importance that the workers are jointly responsible for managing their careers. However, the employer association underlines the necessity to simplify and harmonise the different outplacement measures.

Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Employees in standard employment
Applies to all businesses Does not apply to citizens

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
National government
Regional funds
Trade union

Social partners

Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role Unknown Unknown
Form Not applicable Not applicable

Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:

  • Unknown
  • Main level of involvement: Unknown



Views and reactions




Eurofound (2022), Outplacement, measure BE-2014-1/2671 (measures in Belgium), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin,


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