What is the alternation ?

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Work-study training means that a student divides his or her time between theoretical training in a school and practical training in a company. The work-study program therefore brings students closer to the business world more quickly. This unique education system is growing rapidly because young graduates in work-study programs have a much higher than average rate of integration into the workforce: a real springboard to independence and employment!

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What is a work-study contract ?

The specificity of work-study programs is that they alternate between theoretical courses at school and practical work in a company. Work-study training is always linked to a specific public and has a precise objective, because the work in the company must be linked to the courses taken. It allows you to progressively adapt to the business world to become a true operational professional with recognized experience.

The work-study program is formalized by a tripartite contract signed by the work-study student, the company that hosts him or her for his or her practical training, and the school or institution in which he or she follows his or her theoretical training.

Students on work-study programs wear two hats: they retain their student status but are also employees of their host company, and as such have a real employment contract.

Finally, the work-study program allows you to benefit from free training costs, paid for by your employer, while receiving a salary.

Why take a sandwich course ?

Recruiting an employee on a work-study program has many advantages for the company. First of all, the work-study program allows the employer to train the new employee in the company’s know-how and to support his/her development. The work-study student can thus acquire specific skills that meet the employer’s exact needs.

Work-study programs can also be used to address recruitment issues in certain sectors affected by a shortage of candidates, such as the digital, health or restaurant industries. Recruiting a young person on a work-study program is a way of dealing with the lack of applicants.

Hiring a work-study student is also a flexible way to anticipate the company’s growth without the risk of weakening it financially. Work-study contracts are paid less than standard contracts, in compensation for the training effort made by the employer. Moreover, the work-study student is not counted in the company’s workforce, which allows the company to make additional savings (thanks in particular to the exemption from employee contributions).

What is the difference between apprenticeship and work-study programs ?

Apprenticeship is simply one of the two contracts that can be chosen if you want to do work-study training.

There are two types of work-study contracts in France: the apprenticeship contract and the professionalization contract. Apprenticeship is part of initial training and is validated by a diploma. Professionalization, on the other hand, is part of continuing education and its goal is to obtain a qualification.. The main differences between the contracts are: the length of the contract, the age of the student, the amount of theoretical training and the remuneration. Apprenticeships are aimed more at students in secondary or higher education, while professionalization contracts are aimed more at young people with little or no qualifications.

The apprenticeship contract is a limited-term contract (CDL) or an open-ended contract (CDI) that allows you to obtain a State diploma (from the CAP from high school to the BAC+5 (higher education diploma) or a professional title issued by the State. It is intended for any young person between the ages of 16 and 29, but can be obtained after the age of 30 in certain cases (disabled worker, high-level athlete, business creation or takeover project requiring the prepared diploma).

The objective of the professionalization contract is to acquire a recognized professional qualification (diploma or professional title) as part of a project for integration or return to employment. It is aimed at young people aged 16 to 25 or job seekers aged 26 and over.

How long does a work-study program last?

The duration of an apprenticeship contract is equal to the duration of the vocational training leading to the qualification that is the subject of the contract. It therefore depends on the time needed to prepare and validate the diploma.

However, there is a difference between the apprenticeship contract and the professionalization contract. The duration of the apprenticeship contract ranges from 6 months to 4 years. The maximum duration of the professionalization contract is generally 12 months, but can be up to 24 months in certain cases (young people aged 16 to 25 with no qualifications, beneficiaries of minimum social benefits or a single integration contract) The duration may also be extended if a branch agreement or an interprofessional collective agreement so provides.

What is thesalary for a work-study contract ?

Work-study contracts are paid less than regular employment contracts, but it must be taken into account that the employer also covers the cost of the training. Remuneration also varies according to age, level of training and the type of contract signed with the company.

In the context of an apprenticeship, remuneration varies from 27% of the SMIC (i.e. €419.74 gross) for an apprentice aged under 18 in the first year to 100% of the SMIC (i.e. €1,554.58 gross) for an apprentice aged 21 and over in the third year.

Within the framework of the professionalization contract, the remuneration varies from 55% of the SMIC (i.e. 855.02 € gross) for an employee under 21 years of age to at least the SMIC or 85% of the conventional minimum remuneration for an employee aged 26 and over.

The Grande Ecole program EDC Business School offers a number of two-year (24 months) work-study programs: entrepreneurship and innovation, auditing and management control, corporate finance, digital marketing, sales management and business development, e-business and digital transformation, human resources and organizational transformation, luxury management. A solution perfectly adapted to candidates wishing to quickly acquire managerial skills adapted to the business world.


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