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Vocational training: what kind of companies are taking on apprentices?

Vocational training: what kind of companies are taking on apprentices?

Thanks to the Vocational Training Center (CFA) at L’École de design Nantes Atlantique, 150 companies have signed an apprenticeship contract with students. We take a closer look at these partner companies.

The Vocational Training Center (CFA) for industrial creation and innovation offers 5 training courses in apprenticeship:

- the product design BTS (a 2-year advanced vocational diploma)
- the spatial design BTS (a 2-year advanced vocational diploma)
- the wood construction BTS (a 2-year advanced vocational diploma)
- the Bachelor’s degree in design, materials and modelling
- the Master’s degree in design, “managing design and innovation” option.

The signing of an apprenticeship contract is the first step for the apprentice and the company, who thereby mutually commit to a common goal of training and cooperation. These contracts are often the result of a company’s desire to increase its design activity. For the purposes of the new recruitment campaign, here is a quantitative analysis of these companies.

A strong national foothold

Thanks to co-operative education (studies and work experience combined), L’École de design Nantes Atlantique is present practically nationwide. Its location explains the particularly strong foothold in western France and the Paris region (44% of partner companies are in the Pays de la Loire region and 76 % in western France).

Illustration A. Dahyot

At a regional level, apprenticeships are mostly in Loire Atlantique (52%), followed by Maine et Loire (21%) and Vendée (17%). There are also a small number of companies present in Sarthe (6%) and Mayenne (3%). This geographical distribution reflects the policy adopted by certain regions encouraging design and industry. This has led to a high number of design agencies and to the development of design practices in companies.

A majority of apprentices in small and medium-sized companies

53 % of apprentices carry out their training in very small businesses, 36 % in small and medium-sized companies, 10% in medium-sized companies and 1 % in very large groups. This distribution can be explained by the fact that almost a third of contracts are carried out in consulting firms such as design agencies, architecture firms or research consultancies. A work placement in a small company is an interesting experience as it provides an overall view of the running of a company. The number of apprentices in large and medium-sized companies should rise in the years to come thanks to the Master’s degree “Design and Innovation Management”. The companies taking on these apprentices must have a large design department and are often big international firms.

Illustration A. Dahyot

All sectors of activity are affected by design

The field of design is widely represented in the various industrial sectors (38% of contracts are carried out in this sector). The Wood Construction course (SCBH) is the reason for the number of apprenticeships in the building and public works sector (27%). The third domain is consultancy (25%), specifically in the areas of design, interior architecture and research consultancies.

Illustration A. Dahyot

At a national level, the effect of size and sector of activity are the same as on the regional level, with the exception of the Wood Construction course which has 72% of its apprentice contracts in the Pays de la Loire, Brittany and Poitou Charentes regions.

The Vocational Training Center (CFA) for industrial creation and innovation ultimately ensures a strong foothold throughout France, while maintaining particularly strong ties with the Loire region. The Center has access to a great choice of sectors and different sized companies which represent the various design practices in France. Thanks to the representative nature of these companies, the center plays a key role in developing design.