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EURES (EURopean Employment Services)
News article20 September 2018European Labour Authority, Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion3 min read

Running or starting a small business? Here’s how EURES can help

Do you have under 250 employees? Is your annual turnover less than EUR 50 million? If so, you’re considered a small and medium-sized enterprise (SME). Whether you’re already operating or just setting up, EURES can help to simplify the steps.

Running or starting a small business? Here’s how EURES can help

How to get started

As an EU citizen, you have the right to start a business in any Member State.

To start cutting the red tape, go to Self-employment (Living and working conditions). From the drop-down menu, select the country where you want to open your SME. This should guide you step-by-step through the procedure.

Advice on funding

EURES doesn’t provide direct funding, but there are several EU programmes that offer loans or grants depending on what type of SME you have. To find out whether there’s a funding programme to help your SME, read A Beginner's Guide to EU Funding.

If you’re thinking about a loan or equity finance, you could try COSME. It’s the EU programme for the Competitiveness of Enterprises and Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (2014–2020). This offers access to loans through local financial institutions. To find out where to apply in your country, go to Access to finance.

If your SME is struggling financially, the European Commission can help you assess how you’re doing and work out the best solutions. Learn more in Bankruptcy and second chance.

Find employees through EURES

EURES offers different platforms where you can advertise jobs and find jobseekers to match.

Sign up free as an employer to use the Employers’ search for CVs to find people looking for your field of work. Then you can read jobseekers’ CVs online and save the ones that are most appropriate.

If you plan to hire young people, including apprentices or trainees from all over Europe, Drop’pin@EURES might meet your needs.

Why not advertise on the EURES Portal? Go to Advertise a job to find out how to do so. You can advertise through the national jobs database in your country and link this to the EURES Portal. Select your country from the drop-down list to find your local contact for this.

Employment law

Do you want to hire workers from other Member States? Check out information about work permits and how to register workers in Living and Working.

Create contacts

  • If you want to develop internationally, check out the Enterprise Europe Network for advice and support. They have thousands of experts who can put you in touch with useful international contacts.
  • Check out the upcoming events page in European Job Days. These events give you the chance to meet a large number of jobseekers in one location. You can promote your SME and advertise jobs there. You can also set up interviews in advance to recruit workers during the event. If you can’t travel to events, you can attend online.
  • There are also regular European Employers’ Days where you can network with other companies and training professionals in your sector.
  • How about attending an International Jobs Fair? That’s another way to get noticed and attract the best workers. It’s also a chance to check out the competition.

Find out when all of these are happening from the EURES Events calendar.

Business opportunities

Can you offer services that the Commission needs? It hires SMEs to carry out various services. Find out what contracts are on offer and maybe you can make a winning bid in response to calls for proposals.

If you have any questions, please click on the link below to contact a member of the EURES Staff.


Related links:

Self-employment (Living and working conditions)

A Beginner's Guide to EU Funding

COSME programme

Access to finance

Bankruptcy and second chance

EURES – Employers’ search for CVs


Advertise a job

Living and Working

Enterprise Europe Network

European Job Days

EURES – Events calendar – European Commission

Calls for proposals

EU business-support programmes



Read more:

European Job Days


Find EURES Staff

Working and living conditions in EURES countries

EURES Jobs Database

EURES services for employers

EURES Events Calendar

Upcoming Online Events

EURES on Facebook

EURES on Twitter

EURES on LinkedIn

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Articles are intended to provide users of the EURES portal with information on current topics and trends and to stimulate discussion and debate. Their content does not necessarily reflect the view of the European Labour Authority (ELA) or the European Commission. Furthermore, EURES and ELA do not endorse third party websites mentioned above.