Promoting close ties between the company and schools: a big priority for Renault Trucks
Each new school year throws up the same old questions for students: “Where should I do my work experience ?”. Renault Trucks, which receives 800 such work experience trainees every year, attaches particular importance to the way they are welcomed and made to feel part of the company. And to prove it, the truck manufacturer has just reorganised the Campus Management mission, one of whose objectives is precisely to ensure that the student’s time with the company is both beneficial and a good learning experience. Campus Management is also dedicated to building sustainable bridges between schools in the broadest sense, and the company. Here-below a close-up on the department….
With its desire to establish links with secondary schools, universities and the grandes écoles, the French truck manufacturer has opted to reorganise its 15 year-old ”Campus Management” mission into a dual function.
First of all, Campus Management develops sustainable ties between Renault Trucks and secondary school and higher education students in order to raise the profile of the company and diversify its links. This takes a number of forms (work experience periods, gap years, international corporate voluntary service, sandwich courses, etc…), which may also result in partnerships with training organisation governance bodies.
Thanks to this connection with schools that Renault Trucks intends to firm up over time, young people coming to work in the company are sure to be amongst the best potential recruits, whatever their level of study might be. With the same notion of proximity in mind, Renault Trucks is increasingly going out to meet candidates at student fairs.
As proof of the implementation of this strategy to redefine its relationship with the world of education, the number of international corporate voluntary service (VIE) and sandwich course students has grown substantially.
The number of VIEs completed in Renault Trucks subsidiaries increased from 10 last year to 22 this year: the US, Uruguay, Cameroon, Algeria and Turkey are all destinations that the company can offer.
As for sandwich courses, Campus Management is constantly seeking out training possibilities which prepare people for Renault Trucks trades and which are open to this sort of training. Whereas in the past, this was rather limited to technical, short-term term curricula, sandwich course training has, over recent years, undergone major changes that Campus Management needs to take on board. For example, the company has elected to take part in the Classe Europe operation, involving an apprenticeship contract designed to promote European mobility amongst technicians. The training is delivered in English in three countries (France, Sweden and Spain).
By 2010, Renault Trucks’ objective is to triple the number of young people attending such courses. And the challenge is well on the way to being met since the number of contracts has already doubled in the past 12 months.
True to its principles of refusing exclusion and opening up to as many people as possible, Renault Trucks does not put young people facing hardship on the sideline. The company is a partner of INSA in the “promoting diversity” operation, which targets young people from underprivileged secondary schools. It is working with a secondary school in Venissieux on a project piloted by Sciences Politiques school in Paris, which will result in an experimental classes with an opening onto the working world. Finally, Renault Trucks is helping underprivileged young people both in its work with the local employment agencies in the poorer districts and by supporting solidarity-based competitive entrance to training offering qualifications in those areas.
The Campus Management mission is doing all it can too to ensure that new arrivals and work experience students receive as warm a welcome as possible. In practical terms, this means changing the mind-sets of in-house mentors in two directions: proposing missions with learning and providing attentive guidance throughout the person’s time with us. Amongst other things, this means maintaining a network of managers in every part of the company and introducing reception mechanisms on each of the company’s sites to help people understand the workings of Renault Trucks.
Upstream, Renault Trucks has implemented numerous mechanisms designed to offer pupils and students a broad range of high-quality courses. The company has formalised this requirement for diploma-producing courses by signing a contract with local partners to develop a web-based work experience opportunities database (1,300 courses on offer on average, mostly in the Rhône-Alpes region).
Each year, 800 trainees of all levels are taken on by the French truck manufacturer.