The phenomenon is not new but it is growing. The first corporate university dates from 1919 General Motors, and since then a number of aerospace companies, such as Thales, Airbus Group, Boeing, and now Safran have followed suit. One way for these companies to maintain their employee skills at the highest level.
At Massy, 20 kilometres (12½ miles) south of Paris, Safran, who invests 100 million euros per year in training, has in turn opened its first university. On the 13 hectare (32 acres) campus, 8,500 group employees will be able to benefit from in-house training each year. With its auditorium, seminar rooms, and an 80-room hotel, this new facility is expected to enhance employee professional skills, in anticipation of changes in the aviation industry trades and future manager training. It could also be considered a strong deciding factor in influencing prospective employees to join the company.
Jean-Luc Bérard, Vice President Human Resources – Safran Group :
"The capacity we offer to train, and develop employees' skills is an advantage compared to other companies that may not have developed these means. It is a guarantee of development, and permanent employability, and I think it's really a very, very positive asset in the careers of employees."
From now on, in addition to training, events such as induction, or orientation days for young Safran recruits will be held on the new campus. More than 7,000 new employees met together here at the end of September, and it doesn’t stop there. Given that 80% of its activities are aeronautics related, together with the healthy state of the aviation industry, over the next two years the group plans to recruit some 11,000 employees, comprising not only engineers, and managers, but also, technicians and machine operators.
A thousand posts are up for grabs, particularly on the A380 nacelles and LEAP engine production lines, although, faced with the current difficulties in recruiting such profiles, this will not be easy. The industrial group is therefore considering a plan B; an alliance with aircraft suppliers, referred to as OEM’s (Original Equipment Manufacturers) with the aim of creating a school that meets their specific needs - a sort of Safran high school.