Internship and Employment: finding a job in France

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employment in france

We know that a student’s budget can be quite tight and that some of you may be planning to get a job while you are in school. Not only is it a great way to support yourself, but it’s also the perfect opportunity to practice your French. If you are not a citizen of a European Union country and you have a VLS-TS visa, you can work in France, but under certain conditions: your working time must not exceed 60% of the annual working time, i.e. 964 hours (except for Algerian nationals whose working time is limited to 50% of the normal working time in France).

Before you start looking for a job, there are a few things you should know:

  • The salary is negotiated in gross
  • The legal minimum wage (Smic) is 10,85 €/hour (gross)
  • Most often in France, candidates apply for a job with a CV and a cover letter.

If you want to get a first work experience or an internship during your studies in France, you must indicate your assets/skills and your main language(s) on your CV. International candidates are always welcome when the position requires level language skills. Of course, you must choose the field according to your studies. However, speaking French would be an advantage in building trust with your recruiters (or showing that you are learning French).

Your resume should be one page in length, as well as your cover letter. Do not explain or paraphrase your CV, highlight your qualities and your motivation to work. You can apply for an internship during your studies or a job at your university in France. OMNES Education schools are in contact with prestigious companies. You can also search for jobs on the following websites: Pôle Emploi, Indeed France, Neuvoo France, jobteaser, and Linkedin. Most of the time, you will need to provide your resume, cover letter and phone number in order to be called by the HR department if they are interested in your profile.

If you get an interview, the recruiter will ask you as many questions as possible – the average interview in France lasts 30 minutes. After the interview, send an email to thank the interviewer. If you don’t hear back from them within two weeks of the interview, contact your recruiter to find out what stage the recruitment process is at. If you are hired, you will sign the contract. Good luck!

Employment vocabulary
CDI – Contract for an indefinite period Permanent contract
CDD – Fixed term contract Short-term contract
InterimAn employment contract of limited duration that allows a candidate to fulfill a specific and punctual mission.
Part-time A part-time employee is one whose working hours are less than the legal working hours (35 hours per week)
Full timeThe employee is subject to a legal working time of 35 hours per week. Maximum daily and weekly working hours are also imposed.
SMIC (Minimum Interprofessional Growth Wage) The law entitles you to a minimum wage. Since January 1, 2021, this minimum wage is €10.85/hour gross, or €1,645.58 per month. This salary is gross, the compulsory social contributions (about 20%) must be deducted to determine the net salary.
Work-study: apprenticeship and professionalization contracts Work-study contracts allow students to gain real-world experience by working part-time in a company during their studies. The company covers the tuition and fees while paying a small monthly salary to the student. It is mandatory that the student’s role in the company be related to their field of study so that they can gain practical experience to complement their classroom learning. Work-study contracts give students a boost in their careers by providing a solid education that will make them ideal job-ready candidates after graduation.
STAGEInternships range from 1 month to 6 months depending on the degree and the semester. Under French law, a company is required to pay interns of more than 2 months a minimum of €3.90 per hour.


Useful resources

A question ? Do not hesitate to contact the career center of your school.

MOMJI is a company that recruits regularly. Momji is a company that offers bilingual childcare services in all cities. She hires bilingual staff to provide a multilingual daycare service to families and their children. For more information, please visit their website.

Professional opportunities with omnes Education

During the course of your studies, you may be required to complete an apprenticeship in a commercial or industrial company or to complete your semester with an internship. NEMO is there to support you. NEMO is the platform for access to the OMNES Education professional network. You can find out about internships, work-study programs and your first jobs.

This recruitment platform connects employers and students. Companies post jobs, internships and apprenticeships, but also look at students’ profiles to find the perfect candidate. Therefore, as an OMNES Education student, you will have an account where you can update your resume and regularly check for available jobs. You could find the perfect opportunity in one place.

And of course, the OMNES Education Career Center teams will be available to assist you in your job search.

Updated 11 October 2022