Operational Programme “Human Resource Development"2014-2020
 

What is OP “Human Resource Development“ 2014-2020?

Operational Programme “Human Resource Development“ 2014 – 2020 (OPHRD) is a national programme aimed at improving the quality and rate of employment, reducing poverty and promotion of social inclusion and modernisation of public policies.

 

What measures are supported under OP “Human Resource Development“ 2014 – 2020?

  • OPHRD envisages measures to support employees, enterprises and entrepreneurs who would like to adapt easier to the changing needs of the economic and the labour market.
  • The support is in the form of a grant for the development of employee’s knowledge and skills in line with the qualifications and competencies required by the business, introduction of new forms of work organisation and promotion of geographic and professional mobility.
  • Due to the increased need for continuous update of management and entrepreneurial skills of the management team, the Operational Programme finances SME managers and entrepreneurs training courses aimed at enhancement of their management and entrepreneurial skills.

 

What is the budget of the Programme?

The total budget of OPHRD amounts to EUR 1,09 billion with included national co-financing.

 

How is the budget of the Programme allocated?

The resources under the Programme are allocated to five priority axes:

  • Priority axis 1: „Improving the access to employment and the quality of jobs “;
  • Priority axis 2: „Reducing poverty and promoting social inclusion “;
  • Priority axis 3: „Modernising he institutions in the area of the labour market, social inclusion and healthcare“;
  • Priority axis  4: „Transnational cooperation“;
  • Priority axis 5: „Technical assistance“.

 

Under which priority axis it is most probable that you will receive a grant?

The most relevant and business oriented (for SMEs) axis is Priority axis 1 “Improving the access to employment and the quality of jobs“ with its two thematic objectives “Promoting sustainable and quality employment, and supporting labour mobility“ and “Investing in education, training and vocational training for skills and lifelong learning”. This priority axis supports measures for the development of social entrepreneurship, new jobs and active inclusion of target groups in the labour market, as well as measures aimed at ensuring good and safe working conditions in the enterprises.

The programme, which is published on the official website of OPHRD in the section Strategic Documents , the continuous training of the management staff is set out as one of the factors contributing to the improved competitiveness of the enterprises in view of the need to adapt to changes.

 

How can you apply for a grant?

  • You have to register in the UMIS system in order to create and file a project proposal on a specific OPHRD call.
  • The system is interactive and easy to work with. If you have any difficulties in filing the project proposal, you may read the Manual which is published in order to provide directions and facilitate the work of the users.
  • On the official website of OPHRD, for a specific call you can find information how, who and within what deadlines you can address additional questions and request clarifications in relation to the Call’s Terms of Reference.

 

What are the terms and conditions to participate in calls under OPHRD?

There are Terms of Reference published to each call where you can find specific information as to:

  • The objectives, indicators of the call;
  • The total grant under the call;
  • The minimum (if applicable) and maximum grant to a specific project;
  • Percentage of co-financing – there are calls for which no co-financing is required;
  • Criteria that your business should meet to be eligible candidate. The eligible candidates may include employers, training organisations, non-government organisations;
  • Actions eligible for financing – they depend on the respective call;
  • Eligible and ineligible expenses under the call –under the Programme personnel expenses (expenses on salaries under the provisions of the Labour Code, including social security and health insurance contributions; business trip expenses); expenses on tangible / intangible assets; expenses on services (training, studies, analyses); indirect expenses1 (certain percentage of direct expenses) are usually eligible .
  • Applicable minimum / state aid regime;
  • Minimum and maximum period of project implementation – for example between 6 and 12 months;
  • Procedure, criteria and methodology for evaluation of project proposals.

The evaluation of project proposals has two stages as follows:

Stage 1

Stage 1:

Evaluation of the administrative compliance and eligibility – this evaluation addresses questions such as: are all required documents provided; is the project proposal properly filed; is the qualified electronic signature (QES) used to sign the proposal valid; is the power of attorney for the filing of the proposal valid; is there compliance with the specific eligibility criteria set out in the Terms of Reference, etc. Following completion of the administrative compliance and eligibility evaluation, a list of the project proposals not admitted to technical and financial evaluation stating the grounds for the non-admission is published on the website of the Managing Authority candidates whose project proposals are included in the list may file written objections before the Head of the Managing Authority within one week of the announcement.

Stage 2
Stage 2:

Technical and financial evaluation. The technical and financial evaluation is carried out only for project proposals that have passed successfully the administrative compliance and eligibility evaluation. Aspects such as those listed below are evaluated at this stage:

  • Operational capacity of the candidate / partner – experience in project management, as well as experience in actions similar to / same as those included in the project proposal;
  • Description and justification of the objectives of the project and the needs of the target groups and their relation to the expected outcomes of the project;
  • Compliance of the actions with the underlying objectives and expected outcomes, as well as consistency and duration for the implementation of the actions;
  • Budget – compliance of the expenses envisaged with the objectives set, the actions and expected outcomes.

The evaluation at this stage also includes:

  • Check and evaluation of the feasibility, efficiency and eligibility of all actions and expenses envisaged (are there ineligible actions, ineligible and / or unrealistic expenses, duplication of envisaged actions and / or expenses included in the project proposal);
  • Method and deadline to receive clarifications in relation to the call;
  • Other.

 

What are the expense eligibility requirements?

The beneficiaries have to follow expense eligibility rules set out in the Law for the Management of the Funds from the European Structural and Investment Fund and Decree No 189 of the Council of Ministers of 28 July 2016 on the Setting of National Rules on the Eligibility of Expenses under the Programmes Co-financed by the European Structural and Investment Funds for the Programming Period 2014 – 2020 .

In order to be eligible, expenses have to:

  • Be required for the implementation of the project and have to meet the good financial governance principles – economy, efficiency and effectiveness of invested funds;
  • They have to be in compliance with the terms and conditions of the respective call. During the implementation of the projects the beneficiaries have to comply with the Guidelines issued by the Minister of Finance on the treatment of VAT as an eligible expense in the implementation of projects under the Operational Programmes co-financed by the ERDF, the ESF, the CF and the EMFF of the EU during the programming period 2014-2020
  • There should be adequate audit trail for the expenses;
  • The expenses have to be actually paid by the beneficiary (i.e. the total amount under the submitted invoices or other primary accounting documents (including the VAT) have to be paid by bank transfer or in cash;
  • The expenses have to be included in the beneficiary’s accounting documents through individual analytical accounts or in a separate accounting system;
  • They must be identifiable and subject to inspection and be supported by original expense documents;
  • They have to be incurred for eligible actions in accordance with the respective call;
  • The expenses have to be paid for actually supplied products and rendered services.

 

What is the deadline to apply under calls under the Programme?

You can apply to receive funding under OPHRD depending on the deadlines for submission of project proposals for each call by the end of the Operational Programme in 2020.

 

For more information
For more information

You can see the list of open calls, the deadlines and all other documents required for the application on the website of:

Information regarding important legislative acts and procedures is available on the website of:

Information regarding the financial instruments related to OPHRD is available on the website of:

 

1„Indirect expenses” are expenses related to the implementation of the actions envisaged in the project that do not have direct contribution but that are required for the overall management, evaluation and financial performance. Indirect are also the expenses related to the remuneration of the personnel administering the project – the project leader, technical assistant, accountant and other expert or technical staff, as well as administrative expenses related to the management of the project.

 
Write to us
Ministry of Economy
8, Slavyanska Str., Sofia 1052, Bulgaria
BULSTAT: BG176789453
phone: +359 2 940 7001

fax: +359 2 987 2190
 
Operational Programme
Contacts: 8, Slavyanska Str. Sofia 1000, Bulgaria tel: +359 2 940 7001 e-mail: e-docs@mi.government.bg
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