The 500 000 formations supplémentaires plan, initiated in January 2016, was designed to provide training to one million job-seekers over the year, doubling the number of unemployed people accessing training. This target having been reached, the initiative is now being extended to mid-2017
A unprecedented plan, implemented at regional level
The 500 000 plan was designed to alleviate the barriers faced by job-seekers in accessing training; these are greater in France than in other major European countries. By mobilising existing support schemes, it aims particularly to help the least-qualified job-seekers access quality training programmes that meet the needs of businesses, especially for emerging professions in energy transition or digital transition.
The plan is being implemented by the State together with the regions; 12 of 13 regions across mainland France are involved so far. State funds of EUR 1 billion are already committed, while regions must maintain the same level of funding they dedicated to training job-seekers the previous year. At regional level, governance is quadripartite as it also includes the social partners.
Nearly one million job-seekers trained in 2016
In December 2016, 11 months after the plan was initiated, a mid-term progress report shared between all partners (the national government, the regions and the social partners) showed that some 945 000 training actions had been initiated and/or carried out: 640 000 had entered training by September 2016 (most recent available figure), 200 000 had registered for internships since the start date, 60 000 had received support to start a business by end-November, and 45 000 professionalisation contracts for job-seekers were signed.
Plan extended, awaiting detailed review
The Ministry of Labour, Employment and Training has chosen to extend this exceptional effort for six months, to mid-2017, reallocating existing funds to training actions for job-seekers.
A detailed review of the plan will follow, and is expected to enable more in-depth study of it, looking ahead to possible further action.