Edinburgh Employer Recruitment Incentive

Support provided by The City of Edinburgh Council Scottish Government

What does this involve?

The Edinburgh Employer Recruitment Incentive (EERI) is designed to help people with the greatest barriers to employment find and retain jobs.

Businesses can apply for funding to help with the costs of recruiting and employing someone with a barrier to employment. This could include being a person with a disability, a lone parent, long-term unemployed, a person over the age of 50, care experienced, or a person with a conviction.

The incentive can provide up to £8,000 to help employers fill vacant or newly created jobs. Employers whose application is approved will receive the money directly.

Am I eligible?

Businesses from all sectors are eligible to apply for EERI.

Priority will be given to small and medium-sized enteprises (SMEs) and third sector organisations, including social enterprises.

The person being recruited must have a barrier to gaining employment. You can download the full list of 29 eligible barriers to employment, with definitions, from the City of Edinburgh Council website.

Priority will be given to applications for new recruits who are (at least one of the following):

  • a disabled or deaf person
  • a care-experienced young person
  • a person with a conviction (including CPOs)
  • a person aged over 50 years

They must be unemployed at the time you apply, and you must receive official confirmation of the funding before they start work.

The job you seek to fill must:

  • offer a permanent contract of employment, unless it's for an apprenticeship post – then the contract must cover the duration of the apprenticeship, plus an additional 6 months of employment
  • not offer a zero-hour contract
  • guarantee a minimum of 16 hours employment each week
  • pay the Real Living Wage or above, unless your employee is completing a Modern or Graduate apprenticeship - then you can pay minimum wage rates or higher, with a commitment to consider paying the Real Living Wage at the end of the funded period
  • pay a salary that's greater than the funding received - as the funding will only cover part of the employee’s salary, employers need to contribute the rest

What does this cost?

There is no cost to apply for this funding.

Note that the salary you pay to the employee needs to be more than the funding amount. As the funding will only cover part of the employee’s salary, you'll need to contribute the rest.


Who is this for?

Businesses of any size based in the City of Edinburgh Council region.


How long does this take?

Employers will receive a decision on their application for funding within 10 working days.

Applications must be completed and approved, and the new employee started their employment, by 31 March 2024.

Important information

Employers must:

  • submit a separate application for each individual they wish to employ
  • provide proof of eligibility and employment for the duration of the funded period to City of Edinburgh Council
  • provide the employee with a written contract of employment within 2 months of their start date


Next steps

Visit the City of Edinburgh Council website to find out more and apply.

Support provided by The City of Edinburgh Council Scottish Government

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