Helsinki benefit for employers

The Helsinki benefit is a form of discretionary financial support granted by the City of Helsinki to private and third-sector employers for hiring a long-term unemployed Helsinki resident.

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The purpose of the Helsinki benefit is to support the employment of unemployed Helsinki residents. The benefit is granted to private and third-sector employers for covering hiring expenses. The benefit can be granted for the hiring of an unemployed Helsinki resident who has been granted a pay subsidy, an employment subsidy for ages 55 and above or the Helsinki benefit card.

The maximum amount of the Helsinki benefit is EUR 800 per month. The sum is affected by the employer's hiring expenses and any other support paid for them, such as a pay subsidy or training compensation. The benefit may be granted for a maximum period of 12 months. In the case of an apprenticeship, the benefit can be granted for the entire duration of the apprenticeship period.

Applying for the Helsinki benefit

You can apply for the Helsinki benefit via the online Helsinki benefit service or by submitting the application form with the required attachments.

How the process works

1. Hire an unemployed Helsinki resident.
2. Make sure that the conditions for granting the Helsinki benefit are met.
3. Submit your Helsinki benefit application. You can apply for the Helsinki benefit via the online Helsinki benefit service or using the application form. Be sure to attach the necessary attachments to the application.
4. You will be informed of the decision by letter.
5. The City pays the Helsinki benefit to the employer.
6. Report any changes in the employment relationship.

Processing time

About four weeks

Additional information

You can apply for the Helsinki benefit via the online Helsinki benefit service or by submitting the application form with the required attachments.
Submit a completed application with attachments:

Electronically using the service's https://securemail.hel.fi(Link leads to external service) secure connection to helsinkilisa@hel.fi(Link opens default mail program).

By post to Economic Development Department/Helsinki Employment Services Helsinki benefit
PO Box 70
00099 Helsingin kaupunki

Use the online service

Apply for the Helsinki benefit via the online Helsinki benefit service

Requires authentication.

Fill in a form

Alternatively, you can download and fill out the application form

How the Helsinki benefit works

  1. Hire an unemployed Helsinki resident

  2. Make sure that the conditions for granting the Helsinki benefit are met

    Read more about the conditions pertaining to the hired person, the employer and the employment relationship.

  3. Prepare the required attachments and information

    • Inform the hired person of the processing of personal data.
      Download the notice of personal data processing.(Link leads to external service)
    • Signed employment contract.
    • Pay subsidy decision, decision on employment subsidy for ages 55 and above or Helsinki benefit card.
    • Determine the hiring expenses, i.e. the person’s gross salary, holiday pay and indirect labour costs in EUR per month.
    • Apprenticeship agreement, if applicable.
  4. Apply for the Helsinki benefit

    Apply for the Helsinki benefit via the online Helsinki benefit service or using the application form and attachments.

  5. You are informed of the decision

    The discretionary support is granted if the conditions are met. The decision will be sent by letter to the postal address you indicated on the application.

  6. The City pays the Helsinki benefit to the employer

    The Helsinki benefit is paid as a lump sum to the bank account that you indicated on the application for the period indicated on the decision.

  7. Report any changes in the employment relationship

    If the hired person’s employment is discontinued or their employment relationship ends for any other reason, please report this immediately by sending a message via the Securemail service to helsinkilisa@hel.fi(Link opens default mail program). The Helsinki benefit may be recovered for the time exceeding the duration of the employment relationship.

    Go to the Securemail service(Link leads to external service)

Conditions

The granting of the Helsinki benefit is subject to conditions pertaining to the hired person, the employer and the employment relationship. The conditions for granting the Helsinki benefit adhere to the decision by the Economic Development Sub-committee of the City Board, 11 September 2023 (Section 30, in Finnish(Link leads to external service) and the general guidelines on grants provided by the City (in Finnish)(Link leads to external service). The Helsinki benefit is always discretionary.

An unemployed Helsinki resident who has been granted any of the following:

  • a pay subsidy
  • an employment subsidy for ages 55 and above
  • the Helsinki benefit card.

  • The employer must designate a supervisor to manage the hired person.
  • There must be evidence of the employer’s activities for at least one year. This must be demonstrated, where necessary, by presenting minutes or financial statements.
  • The employer must not have incurred significant non-payments of tax or statutory payments. Additionally, employers running commercial operations must not be operating a company in difficulty as set out in the General Block Exemption Regulation (MEAE, in Finnish)(Link leads to external service), and the employer must not be the subject of an unpaid recovery order based on a European Commission decision.
  • The Helsinki benefit granted to operators engaging in economic activities is de minimis aid (MEAE, in Finnish)(Link leads to external service). The employer must present a summary of de minimis aid received during the current tax year and two previous tax years.
  • The employer may not terminate or lay off other employees as a result of being granted the Helsinki benefit. The Helsinki benefit may be granted if the employer has provided work in accordance with the Employment Contracts Act to employees whose employment has been terminated or who have been laid off for financial or production-related reasons, or when there is no re-employment obligation.
  • The Helsinki benefit cannot be granted if the employer has previously received the Helsinki benefit for hiring the same person and the support period ended less than three years ago.

  • The Helsinki benefit must be applied for no later than within four (4) months of the start of the employment relationship. If the application is submitted after this deadline, the benefit can be granted retroactively for up to four (4) months from the arrival date of the application.
  • The Helsinki benefit can be granted for fixed-term or permanent employment. The required minimum duration of a fixed-term employment relationship is one (1) month.
  • The Helsinki benefit is granted in accordance with the duration of the employment relationship for a maximum period of 12 months. 
  • The hired person’s working hours must be at least 18 hours a week.
  • For a pay-subsidised apprenticeship, the Helsinki benefit can be applied for the entire apprenticeship period in periods of 12 months each. If the apprenticeship lasts more than one year, the employer must apply for the Helsinki benefit again upon the end of the first benefit period.
  • In an apprenticeship, the total working time must be at least 25 hours per week.
  • The salary paid for the work must correspond with the applicable collective agreement. If there is no binding collective agreement in the industry in question, the salary must be at a level regarded as normal and reasonable and based on factors other than just the results of the work.
  • The employment relationship supported with the Helsinki benefit must fulfil the requirements for working hours and salaries that entitle the employee to the unemployment allowance (Unemployment Security Act 1290/2002, chapter 5, section 4, in Finnish)(Link leads to external service).

  • The Helsinki benefit is paid to the employer as a lump sum following the issuing of the decision on the benefit.
  • The employer commits to using the Helsinki benefit for the purposes stated in the decision. If requested by the City of Helsinki, the employer must provide any documents related to the employment and other documents required in the processing of the Helsinki benefit for monitoring the use of the benefit. The use of the benefit is also monitored with random inspections.
  • The Helsinki benefit can be recovered from the applicant if it is granted on the basis of incorrect information or utilised for invalid purposes or if the applicant refuses to provide additional information upon request.

Go to the Securemail service(Link leads to external service)

  • The Helsinki benefit can be recovered for the time exceeding the actual duration of the employment relationship.

Frequently asked questions

The Helsinki benefit must be applied for no later than within four (4) months of the start of the employment relationship. If the application is submitted after this deadline, the benefit can be granted retroactively for up to four (4) months from the arrival date of the application.

The employment subsidy for ages 55 and above is a form of financial support that TE Offices or local government pilots on employment can grant to an employer for hiring an unemployed jobseeker over the age of 55. One of the prerequisites for the support is that the jobseeker has been unemployed for at least 24 months during the last 28 months.

Sign in with your online banking credentials or mobile certificate.

When you sign in for the first time, the service will automatically create a personal Helsinki profile for you, unless you already have a Helsinki profile. Add your own email address to ensure you receive the confirmation message.

To sign in to the online Helsinki benefit service as a representative of a company or community, you must have the authority to sign on behalf of the company or community or have been granted the authority to ‘Apply for pay subsidy’ or ‘Applying for grants’ in the Suomi.fi service.

Acting on behalf of an organisation, Suomi.fi(Link leads to external service)

The Helsinki benefit card can be issued to jobseekers whose service needs have been assessed by the City of Helsinki Employment Services.

The card supports jobseeking by letting potential employers know that the jobseeker meets the conditions of the Helsinki benefit.

You can send messages about your application via the online Helsinki benefit service if you notice a mistake in the information that you provided on your application, for example.  

Follow these steps:

Messages sent via the online Helsinki benefit service are encrypted.

Contact information

Name
Sonja Vuorela

Title
Helsinki benefit

Name
Mikko Von Hertzen

Title
Helsinki benefit

Name
Sanna Kauppila

Title
Helsinki benefit