How “Kompetansespor” - Oslo’s newest initiative - will reduce Norway’s talent gap

Published by Oslo Business Region, 16 August 2023

Oslo and the rest of Norway lack skilled talent, particularly in technology and IT. As a result, many companies need to look abroad to fill the gaps. The City of Oslo is now deploying a pilot project that will reduce the wait time for new hires based outside of the EU from 37 weeks to only 3 days.

The Kompetansespor pilot project was presented at Arendalsuka 2023. Watch a recording of the event, where you can hear from:

  • Rina Mariann Hansen, Vice Mayor for Business Development and Public Ownership at the City of Oslo (Oslo kommune)
  • Siw Andersen, CEO of Oslo Business Region
  • Thomas Bergøy Johansen, Special Advisor at the City of Oslo
  • Karen Dolva, Founder and CEO of No Isolation
  • Synne Kjeka Namtvedt, Team Leader of UDI Brukerlab

The Kompetansespor will contribute to:

  • Better predictability for companies

  • More efficient administration in the public sector

  • Positioning Norway as a more attractive country for international talent

Kompetansespor is a pilot by the City of Oslo in collaboration with our partners:

Oslo kommune, Digdir, UDI, Politiet, Skatteetaten, UiO, Finans Norge, Antler, SUA, Digital Identitet Norden, Symfoni, BankID, Abelia og Osloregionen.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why are you doing a pilot on this?

  • As Norway transforms from an oil and gas economy to sustainable industries, growth companies are increasingly critical for the transition. But these companies are in dire need for more skilled workers, especially within technology and digitalization. Two-thirds lack the talent needed to scale. Compounding matters, the current immigration process for hiring skilled talent is slow and cumbersome. We see an opportunity to make the process easier, more reliable and secure. Global competition for talent is fierce, and Oslo needs to do something to be able to attract the competence we need to grow the local and national economy.

How does it work today?

  • The current process immigration process for skilled new hires takes 37 weeks.

How does the pilot work?

  • The pilot is testing how to speed the processing time for new hires from outside the EU through the use of a digital wallet. The pilot is being implemented across a number of agencies in collaboration with our partner organizations to test and accelerate the process. Currently, the pilot involves a lot of manual work to make sure we get things right before we build a digital solution.

When will the pilot be ready?

  • The first phase will be complete in September. The results will be presented to the public during Oslo Innovation Week.

When will Kompetansespor be launched?

  • We don’t know yet when the digital wallet will be available to employers beyond the pilot.

Who is behind the pilot?

  • Kompetansespor is a collaborative initiative led by the City of Oslo in collaboration with partners: Oslo Business Region, Digdir, UDI, Politiet, Skatteetaten, UiO, Finans Norge, Antler, SUA, Digital Identitet Norden, Symfoni, BankID, Abelia and Osloregionen. For questions, please contact Oslo Business Region.
  • Special recognition is also given to Jon Ramvi (Symfoni), as the lead developer behind the project.

Who is Kompetansespor for?

  • The criteria for being eligible will be outlined by the authorities. Our current solution focuses on new hires outside the EU.

FAQ from companies

How can my business start using the new solution?

  • The criteria have not been defined yet, as we are still in the pilot phase. The criteria for being eligible will be set by the authorities and will be made publicly available when the solution has been tested and is ready to roll out.

Can my business apply to be one of the selected companies for the pilot?

  • We currently are not accepting new applicants, but we do appreciate your interest. If we need more companies to be part of the pilot or later testing, we will prioritise Oslo-based growth companies that deliver solutions that meet SDG goals and are hiring skilled workers within tech and digitalisation.

My company is not in Oslo. How can we join?

  • The goal of Kompetansespor is to create a solution that can be scaled nationally. Please contact us to indicate your interest, and we will be sure to update you.

FAQ from job seekers

I got a job offer in Norway, how do I know if the kompetansespor is for me?

  • The initiative is in the pilot phase and is being tested with a limited number of employers. Ask your employer if they are involved in the pilot.

Which companies are approved for the kompetansespor?

  • This will be announced at Oslo Innovation Week.

Is it for any international worker, or just those from outside the EU?

  • Currently, we’re testing only with new hires outside the EU.

If I am a non-EU citizen and already live in Norway, can I use the kompetansespor?

  • Currently, it is not possible to sign up for the pilot.