The head of the Federal Employment Agency wants to make some changes

Former Federal Labor Minister and SPD leader Andrea Nahles will take over as head of the Federal Employment Agency (BA) on August 1. The 52-year-old has concrete plans, which she announced last weekend. Among other things, she defends a general overhaul of Hartz IV and wants to push automation within the agency.

Andrea Nahles’ projects for the Federal Employment Agency

On August 1, 2022, former SPD leader Andrea Nahles will take the stage as chairwoman of the Federal Employment Agency. She succeeds Detlef Scheele, who has served on the board since 2017.

In doing so, Nahles wants to bring its expertise from the federal level to the table and has already communicated concrete plans in recent days. The BA will benefit from her experience in Berlin, as she revealed in an interview with Spiegel.

One of the plans involves the so-called Burgergeld, which the current traffic light government has planned. Nahles sees this as an opportunity to “Close the Chapter on Hartz”. It is to be paid as state social assistance to people in need and replaces unemployment benefit II, hitherto known as “Hartz IV”.

Especially since the situation on the labor market has improved significantly today, the concept is no longer relevant.

BA will become Germany’s most modern digital organization

At the same time, Nahles also materialized plans to make the Federal Employment Agency a pioneer in Germany as part of an offensive in the field of automation and digitalization.

As reported by Börse-Online magazine, the new boss plans to make the agency a leading organization in the field of automation and digitalization in Germany. From his point of view, a “decade of automation” is necessary, Nahles reportedly said.

However, for this to be implemented, she said, the country would have to rely on the help of the German government. This should provide appropriate technologies such as cloud solutions.

One of the key aspects of this development is electronic record keeping, in which Berlin, the German capital, is already playing a pioneering role. He wants to be fully electronic on file by 2024, as was recently announced.

The BA’s existing digital services, which include, for example, the possibility to register for unemployment online, are to be systematically expanded under his leadership. To do this, he said, they want to continue down the automation path and move forward with the use of artificial intelligence.

Many construction sites

However, Andrea Nahles faces a daunting task when she takes up her post as head of the Federal Employment Agency. Moreover, the agency’s financial situation currently seems anything but rosy.

Especially in view of the Corona pandemic, the saved reserves of almost 27 billion euros are “more than eaten”. According to Nahles, the current budget for 2022 is already more than two billion euros short.

As a new, unplanned cost factor, refugees from Ukraine, who are funded through Base Security, would be added. Partial unemployment and the energy crisis are other factors that currently do not allow a serious forecast. Nahles does not expect normal operations to be possible in the coming months.