A New Europass Framework: helping people make their skills & qualifications more visible

A New Europass Framework: helping people make their skills & qualifications more visible

Yesterday, the Commission has adopted a proposal to revise the Europass Decision. Europass is a suite of tools and services which support the transparency of skills and qualifications across the European Union. With this revision, the Commission aims to simplify and modernise these tools for the digital age and to add a new feature using big data to map and anticipate labour market trends and skills needs.

Europe’s prosperity depends upon our most valuable asset – our people. In a fast-changing global economy, it is people’s skills which will be a motor for our competitiveness and growth. Europass is one of Europe’s most used and well-known skills resources. Since it was established in 2005, more than 60 million Europass CVs have been created and hundreds of thousands of learners across the EU receive Diploma and Certificate Supplements every year which help to make their qualifications more readable and easily comparable abroad; backed-up with advice and support services on the ground in Member States.

The new Europass Framework will build upon this successful formula with easy to use tools to help people identify and communicate their skills and qualifications in all EU languages. These include an improved online tool for creating CVs and skills profiles, free self-assessment tools to help you evaluate your skills, tailored information on learning opportunities across Europe, and information and support to help you get your qualifications recognised as well as labour market intelligence about what skills are most in demand and where. The new Europass Framework will also link with other EU tools and services across labour and education and training systems, such as the EURES job mobility portal, allowing for an easier exchange of information and more joined-up services for end-users.
National support centres will continue to offer individual advice and guidance to help people navigate the skills and qualifications landscape.

Marianne Thyssen, Commissioner responsible for Employment, Social Affairs, Skills and Labour Mobility, stated: “Skills are a pathway to prosperity and the key to good quality jobs. With the right skills people can fulfil their potential as confident, active citizens in the changing world of work. The new Europass Framework will give people tools to showcase their skills and qualifications in a user-friendly way and access to information and support services to inform their choices about study and work across Europe.” 

The revision is part of the New Skills Agenda for Europe, presented on 10 June 2016.


The Europass framework

The single European framework for the transparency of qualifications, Europass, was established by the Decision 2241/2004/EC of the European Parliament and the Council of 15 December 2004.

The overall objective of the initiative is to support the mobility of people in Europe, including for education and employment purposes. It increases awareness of and access to tools which make skills and qualifications visible and easy to understand amongst learners, job-seekers, employees and employers, and education and training institutions among others.

At the core of the existing Europass Framework is a portfolio of documents:

  • the Europass Curriculum Vitae (CV) completed by any individual to report on his/her qualifications, professional experience, skills and competences;
  • the Europass Language Passport (ELP) completed by any individual to report on her/his language skills;
  • the Europass Certificate Supplement (ECS) issued by vocational educational and training authorities to their students along with their award certificates adding information to make certificates more easily understandable especially by employers or institutions outside the issuing country;
  • the Europass Diploma Supplement (EDS) issued by higher education institutions to their graduates along with their degree or diploma to make these educational qualifications more easily understandable, especially outside the country where they were awarded;
  • the Europass Mobility Document (EMD) for recording any organised period of learning or training time that a person spends in another European country, completed by the home and host organisations.

Since 2005, Europass has had more than 126 million website visits; over 93 million document templates have been downloaded while more than 60 million Europass CVs, by far the most popular tool, have been created online.

An evaluation of the Europass Framework carried out in 2013 highlighted its achievements. Europass documents have been taken up by all groups of stakeholders and have helped people change their job or location (CV, Language Passport and Certificate Supplement were all reported to be instrumental in this by more than 60% of their surveyed users) and gain learning opportunities such as admission to educational institutions (46% of Certificate Supplement users, 50% of Language Passport users, and smaller proportions of surveyed users of other documents).

Moreover, Europass played an important role in mobility within the same country (40% of surveyed users were mobile in their home country). The documents have become widely used within countries such as Italy and Spain, which display above average usage rates of the CV, while in France the Europass Mobility Document has been adapted for use by individuals to profile their own skills.

Useful links

See also MEMO/16/3212

Homepage of Commissioner Thyssen

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