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Who is responsible for apprenticeships?

The Danish model

As a foreign company in Denmark, you might find that the trade unions and employers’ organisations play different and more active roles in Denmark than in your home country when it comes to wages, working conditions and vocational education. In Denmark, all matters related to the labour market are negotiated between the employer, the employee and the government. This way of doing things is typically referred to in Denmark as ‘the Danish Labour Market Model’ or simply ‘the Danish model’.

Employers’ associations and trade unions make up the two sides of the social dialogue. Sometimes the government is included to ensure tripartism. Social partners have a vital role to play in reaching out to employees and employers. They also seek to increase the representation of their membership to ensure deeper and broader benefits of association, representation and leadership, including in the field of public policy, its formulation and implementation.

Technical committees

Pursuant to Danish legislation on vocational training, a technical committee is appointed to all vocational courses. These committees are made up of an equal number of representatives of the employer and the employees.

The responsibilities of a technical committee include:

  • Continuous updating of the content and framework of the apprenticeship in admissions regulations and course programmes
  • Appropriate surveys, trials and development projects for the apprenticeship and its technical areas
  • Liaison with ministries and organisations about the apprenticeships
  • Certification of employers
  • Apprenticeship tests; content and development
  • Appointment of external examiners
  • Certificate of vocational aptitude and medals
  • Apprenticeship agreements – curtailment, credits, extension
  • Disputes

The committees are able to assign tasks to local education committees at the technical colleges concerned.

Local education committees

At the technical colleges, the technical committees appoint local education committees for each of the apprenticeships offered at the college. At a local level, they are required to advise the colleges on the planning of the apprenticeships, work towards the development of partnerships with local employers and strive to secure further work placement opportunities.

The organisations responsible for the vocational training programmes for electricians and plumbers in Denmark are:

TEKNIQ Arbejdsgiverne

TEKNIQ: Arbejdsgiverne Danish Mechanical and Electrical Contractors’ Association

The association is the fourth-largest trade/employers’ organisation in Denmark, and thus the second-largest in the construction industry.

The Danish Union of Electricians

The trade union for the electrical industry in Denmark. The union is one of the oldest in Denmark and was founded more than 100 years ago.

The Danish union of plumbers and sheet metal workers

Founded in 1890 the union today organizes around 9.000 skilled workers in the danish plumbing industry.