National Employment Services(NES)


  1. Background

                 The Employment Service came into existence in India under the stress of postwar demobilization. In order to ensure uniformity in policies and effective co-ordination of efforts, the Directorate General of Resettlement and Employment (D.G.R.& E) was set up in July 1945 and Employment Exchanges were gradually opened in several parts of the country.

                 Till the end of 1946, Employment Service facilities were restricted to demobilized service personnel and discharged war workers. In 1947, consequent upon the partition of the country, the Employment Exchanges were called upon to deal with the resettlement of a large number of persons who were displaced as a result of partition. In response to popular demands, the scope of the service was gradually extended and by early 1948, Employment Exchanges were thrown open to all categories of applicant.

                 Diversification of its functions in the field of Occupational Research, Vocational Guidance and Employment Market Information took place gradually. The day-to-day administration of the employment exchanges was handed over to the State Governments with effect from 1st November 1956.

                 In 1960, the name of the Directorate General was changed from Directorate General of Resettlement and Employment to Directorate General of Employment and Training (D.G.E&T). The D.G.E.& T constituted the national headquarters of the Employment Service as well as the Craftsmen Training Scheme of the Ministry of Labour, Government of India. The Director General was at the apex of both the organisations at the national level. Directorate of Training looking after the work of ITI’s, Apprenticeship Training etc. was an integral part of Directorate General of Employment and Training, MoLE. This was separated in 2015 from MoLE and is now the part of Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship. Thereafter DGE&T has been renamed as Directorate General of Employment (DGE). Now it is the apex of National Employment Service and is headed by Additional Secretary (Labour & Employment)/ Director General of Employment, M/o Labour & Employment.


  1. Features of National Employment Service
  1. The National Employment Service is the joint concern of Central and State Governments. The Employment Exchanges with State Directorates of Employment including their other administrative offices with DGE (National Authority) constituting an organic whole is known as “National Employment Service”.
  2. As per the provisions of ILO Convention 88 (Organisation of Employment Service Convention), ratified by Government of India in 1959, MoLE, GoI is mandated to provide for
  • A free Public Employment Service (PES);
  • National system of employment offices under a national authority; and
  • Development of Employment Service Policy & Procedure through consultative process.
  1. Policies, standards and procedures for the National Employment Service are laid down by the Central Government in consultation with the State Governments.
  2. The Employment Exchanges function under the direct administrative and financial control of the respective State Governments/UT Administrations.
  3. National Employment Service covers all the States and Union Territories of India except Sikkim.
  4. The Employment Exchanges do not guarantee the placement to the registered applicants. They are not responsible for creation of jobs. However, the Employment Exchanges are mandated to facilitate between employment seekers and employers and to provide employment assistance services such as registration of job seekers, collection of vacancies from enterprises, submission of job-seekers against the notified vacancies, campus recruitment, dissemination of information, vocational & counseling guidance, etc.
  5. The Employment Exchanges have grown from about twenty in 1945 to around one thousand in 2022,  with changes in their activities. They are being modernized and computerized.
  6. As per the revised instructions from DOPT following the Supreme Court judgement 1996, recruitment in the public sector is made by notifying the vacancy to local Employment Exchanges and by publication in Employment News, etc. Thus, both the list of jobseekers submitted by the Employment Exchange and those who have responded against the advertisement,  are considered for selection by the Employers.
  7. The main activities of Employment Exchanges are:
  • Registration and placement of job-seekers
  • Dissemination of information about employment opportunities, skills etc.
  • Career Counselling/Vocational Guidance Services.
  • Special services to the disadvantaged sections of society.
  • Organising/facilitating job fairs.
  • All vacancies for scientific and technical personnel carrying a Grade pay of Rs. 2800 (Level 5) or more occurring in Central Government establishments are notified to the Central Employment Exchange(CEE). Other Central Government vacancies, in respect of which the employing authority specially desires, circulation outside the State may also be notified to the Central Employment Exchange.

Vacancies notified to the Central Employment Exchange (CEE) are advertised in the Employment News by CEE through DAVP on behalf of the employers. The cost of advertisement is borne by the DGE. These vacancies are required not to be advertised by the employers in the Employment News directly. The CEE functions under the direct financial  & administrative control of DGE, MoLE.


            The Employment Exchanges (Compulsory Notification of Vacancies) Act, 1959 provides for compulsory notification of vacancies and submission of Employment Returns (ER-I) by employers to the Employment Exchanges.

It applies to all establishments in the Public Sector and such establishments in the private sector engaged in non-agricultural activities and employing 25 or more workers. Enforcement of the Act is the responsibility of the States and Union Territories.

  Majority of the States/Union Territories have special enforcement machinery for this purpose.

Based on the recommendations of the Second National Commission on Labour, the Ministry of Labour & Employment, Government of India had taken steps to simplify, amalgamate and rationalize the relevant provisions of the existing various Central Labour Laws into 4 Labour Codes. These Codes are, the Code on Wages, 2019, the Occupational Safety Health & Working Conditions Code, 2020, the Industrial Relations Code, 2020 and the Code on Social Security, 2020.

In the process, the relevant provisions of EE(CNV) Act, 1959 rules made thereunder and suitable changes as per the requirements of present-day,  have been subsumed in the Code on Social Security 2020. These changes inter-alia, include redefining employment exchanges, increasing their activities, provision for online reporting of vacancies, etc.

For subsuming the existing Employment Exchanges (Compulsory Notification of Vacancies) Act 1959, one Chapter (Chapter-XIII) on Employment Information & Monitoring has been added to the Code on Social Security 2020 enacted by the Parliament during September, 2020.


National Employment Service Manual (NESM) is a manual of instructions, procedures etc. to be followed relating to the functioning and operations of the National Employment Service through the country vide network of Employment Exchanges. This contains a uniform policy and procedures. Soft & hard copies of this Manual(NESM),  are provided to the States/UTs/ Employment Exchanges/other stakeholders by DGE on its revision and on subsequent demand.

The NESM comprises four volumes:

The Volume-I of NESM which mainly contains the description of Concepts, Definitions, Instructions, etc is divided into six parts viz.,

Part-I: Employment Exchange Policy & Procedure- contains 18 chapters (chapter I-  XVIII)

Part-II: The collection of Employment Market Information-06 chapters (chapter I-VI)

Part-III: Vocational Guidance & Employment Counselling-07 chapters (chapter I-VII)

Part-IV: Placement of the persons with disabilities.

Part-V: Employment Enhancement Activities-It contains (Newly added Part)-VII chapters (Chapter I-VII)

Part-VI: Online System of Submitting and Receiving Statistical Returns/Reports-It contains(Newly added part)-II chapters(Chapter I-II)

The Volume-II of the NESM contains various formats (forms, tables, copies of orders etc) and Govt. instructions issued by different departments which are required to be referred by the Employment Exchanges in their day-to-day work. This volume has also four parts as mentioned in volume-I and related forms, documents are given in the relevant part.

The Volume-III of NESM comprises copies of Act(s) and Rules pertaining to Employment Exchanges (Compulsory Notification of Vacancies) EE(CNV) Act, 1959, Apprenticeship Act, 1961 and The Persons with Disabilities(Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, 1995 for reference purposes.

The Volume-IV of NESM contains complete online procedure of NCS portal. This is a new Volume.

Soft copies of all these Four volumes are placed at the link….

Volume-I                   Volume-II                       Volume-III                    Volume-IV

The existing publication of  NESM was last revised about 15 years ago. The revision and updating of NESM have been completed and new version of NESM 2022 has been issued and uploaded on the website of DGE. (