Fair Recruitment Initiative

The Fair Recruitment Initiative (FRI) was launched in 2014 as part of the ILO Director General’s call for a Fair Migration Agenda. Since its launch, the FRI has been critical to ILO’s work in the area of national and international recruitment of workers and has added renewed impetus and visibility to this important topic. Through the implementation of the first phase of the strategy between 2014-2019, the role of ILO and its constituents has expanded and the development of additional knowledge, tools and guidance has contributed to advancing the international debate on this subject.

The 2021-2025 FRI Strategy (Phase II) will continue to be grounded in relevant international labour standards (ILS), global guidance, and social dialogue between governance institutions and actors of the labour market – i.e. those who directly experience the challenges and opportunities of implementing fair recruitment practices. The FRI has combined global policy dialogue, knowledge and data generation with on-the-ground interventions where tools are tested, implemented, and expertise created.

Our vision

The Fair Recruitment Initiative's vision is to ensure that recruitment practices nationally and across borders are grounded in labour standards, are developed through social dialogue, and ensure gender equality.

Specifically, they:
  • are transparent and effectively regulated, monitored, and enforced;
  • protect all workers’ rights, including fundamental principles and rights at work (FPRW), and prevent human trafficking and forced labour;
  • efficiently inform and respond to employment policies and labour market needs, including for recovery and resilience.

Our strategy

The 2021-2025 Fair Recruitment Initiative Strategy is grounded in four pillars.

  1. Pillar 1

    Enhancing, exchanging and disseminating global knowledge on national and international recruitment processes

    • Target 1.1 Quality data and research in key thematic areas or sectors, including the care economy, agriculture, construction, transport and services, are produced and disseminated.
    • Target 1.2 Evidence-based and innovative tools and guidance are produced and disseminated.
    • Target 1.3 ILO fair recruitment standards, principles, including the fundamental principles and rights at work, and guidelines are prominent on the global and regional agendas and pilot innovations are promoted.
    • Target 1.4 Training and capacity building is effectively delivered in cooperation with ITC-ILO, and materials developed, adapted and updated to address their emerging needs.
    • Target 1.5 The general public has increased access to information about abusive recruitment practices and their impact in terms of forced and bonded labour and human trafficking, including through improved and accurate reporting by the media on this topic.

  2. Pillar 2

    Improving laws, policies and enforcement to promote fair recruitment

    • Target 2.1 National laws and policies are adopted, in consultation with social partners, and implemented to support employment creation and protect workers throughout the recruitment process.
    • Target 2.2 Increased number of countries that have introduced/improved their recruitment enforcement system to monitor recruitment violations and provide effective remedies.
    • Target 2.3 Increased number of countries that agree or renegotiate bilateral labour agreements in line with ILO standards and principles, and through social dialogue at all stages.
    • Target 2.4 Workers’ and employers’ organizations engage effectively in bipartite or tripartite social dialogue in the area of recruitment.
    • Target 2.5 Increased number of countries that have taken steps towards the ratification of international labour standards relevant to fair recruitment.

  3. Pillar 3

    Promoting fair business practices

    • Target 3.1 Businesses and employers in IOE’s networks as well as ILO networks (e.g. ILO GBNFL & Alliance 8.7, the Child Labour Platform, etc.) and in selected sectors have increased awareness and access to knowledge, guidance and tools to change recruitment practices in a gender-responsive manner and implement ILO guidance.
    • Target 3.2 Businesses, particularly SMEs, have improved access to country and/or sector specific tools to conduct due diligence for fair recruitment practices.
    • Target 3.3 Private recruitment agencies (as well as public employment services as relevant) have increased awareness and access to knowledge, guidance and tools to change practices, conduct due diligence, and align with voluntary schemes.

  4. Pillar 4

    Empowering and protecting workers

    • Target 4.1 Trade unions have increased awareness and access to knowledge, guidance and tools to increase representation of migrant workers among their members.
    • Target 4.2 Trade unions have increased awareness and access to knowledge, guidance and tools to improve and expand their activities to promote, support and advance fair recruitment, in cooperation when relevant with civil society organizations.
    • Target 4.3 Workers are provided with independent, relevant, understandable and actionable information about their rights and obligations in recruitment, including on access to justice and remedies.
    • Target 4.4 Workers can effectively access compensation and other remedies through justice and company-union grievance mechanism and social dialogue.

Learn more

  1. Brochure

    ILO Fair Recruitment Initiative Strategy 2021-2025

    Available in English, French and Spanish