Work Placement Programme

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Why Apply?

The Work Placement Programme facilitates your business to take on a person for a work experience placement for a maximum of nine months. While the person is gaining valuable work experience they are also contributing to your business. You have the opportunity to see how they work and if you are in a position to recruit you will have had ample opportunity to determine if they are suitable. 

Who is Eligible?

Businesses in the Public, Private, Community and Voluntary Sector can apply to offer work placements. In your application you will be required to meet certain criteria and to make certain declarations. See Application Guidelines (PDF 42kb) for details.

How to Apply?

Complete the Work Placement Programme online application form

Reminder: Cooling off period.
As per guidelines: if one placement finishes and as a company want to take on an individual for the same position in the same area, a cooling off period for 6 months will apply.
If one placement finishes and you wish to take on an individual in a different area you may do so providing you do not exceed your quota of placements at any one time.

Do I Pay Participants?

Payment of Participants is not a requirement of the programme. Some Participants may be in receipt of a social welfare payment therefore there are restrictions regarding any additional payments they may receive. Participants are required to notify the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection (DEASP) of any payments received, and are advised to check that this does not adversely affect their social welfare status and entitlements. For Participants that are not in receipt of any social welfare payment this matter does not arise.

Are there any supports available if I offer a Participant a Job?

Yes. JobsPlus is an employer incentive, from the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection which encourages and rewards employers who offer employment opportunities to the long term unemployed. The incentive will replace the existing Employer Job PRSI Exemption and the Revenue Job Assist schemes. Full details are available on

How many placements can my business/ organisation avail of under WPP?

  •  The number of placements a provider can avail of depends on the number of full time employees that business has.
  • The table below presents the approved allocations: -
Number of full time employees
Number of WPP Placements
1-10 employees
1 place
11-20 employees
2 places
21-30 employees
3 places
10% of your workforce to a maximum of 25 places whichever is the smaller
  • Local branch offices of national organisations will be regarded as an individual provider for the purpose of the programme.

What if my business exceeds the above allocations, can we take on more participants?

  •  Yes, the allocation of places to providers is based on a “Rolling”, mechanism.  
  • If you are an provider with a company that employs between 21-30 people you can avail of three Work Placements at any one time
  • If one placement is completed or you decide to employ a person on from that placement, you will automatically be allowed to take on another participant to make up your overall allocation of three


What if one placement finishes and I want to take on a person for the same position, can I do this?

No, you must wait for three months before you can advertise the same position


What if I have taken on a Work Placement Participant as an employee and wish to advertise that same position again?

In this case because you have taken on a permanent staff member from the Work Placement Programme, no 3 month cooling off period will apply.
Last modified:28/01/2014

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