Major reorientation of the labor market

It seems that environmental planning has finally conquered the Elysee, which should soon appoint a Prime Minister in charge of the matter. Has the IPCC’s call finally been heard? Knowing that we only have 3 years left to maintain a livable planet, and to energize ourselves on all levels, in our personal lives as well as at work, who can still imagine working as a father? In terms of work, the generations follow each other and are not the same. Sleeping at work and the metro no longer makes many people dream, nothing more than the promise of nonsense pool jobs at age 50. 78% of 18-24 year olds surveyed by research firm Yougov for Monster in September 2021 would not accept a job that meant nothing to them. 92% of respondents to a recent survey conducted by Audencia’s Positive Impact Chair for jobs_that_makesense question the meaning of their professional activity. Among them, 50% ask themselves questions, and 42% have begun the process of professional retraining. Behind this search for meaning, 57% of participants mentioned a desire to contribute to the challenges of environmental and/or social transformation.

So this is a unique opportunity to go in the right direction. Young people want to contribute positively to society, society needs new energies, the issue is settled. Not that simple. Is the world of work ready to receive this huge number of new workers? Do these new workers have the skills to integrate these new occupations? By 2050, Ademe estimates the number of new jobs to be filled at about 1 million, just for the green economy. The numbers are pretty much the same on the transformation project side. The “Transformation Plan for the French Economy” of the Low Carbon Research Center plans to destroy 800,000 jobs (mainly in the oil sector) but also to create 1.1 million (mainly through the creation of powerful cycles, two-wheeled cars and electric cars), a net balance of 300,000 jobs created acquired by the French.

Three basic components

It’s more than a big quit, so it’s a big redirect that needs to be orchestrated. There seem to be three key components for us to make this shift: helping influence companies to hire, training extensively in occupations of environmental and societal transformation, and encouraging workers to retrain.

We can say that the labor market is just a mathematical equation that is easy to solve, with companies hiring on one side and job seekers looking for work on the other. The problem is that a positive impact economy relies primarily on structures, associations, or small businesses, which do not necessarily have the resources to employ them for the first time. How can we give them the boost they need to take this step? One solution can be found in the Manifesto of Economy of Tomorrow implemented by the Mouvement Impact France, which calls in particular to redirect taxes, aid and public investment towards environmental and social competitiveness. We can also imagine a support system for young companies with an impact similar to that of small innovative companies, with employers’ social security contributions exempted for the first five years of their existence in order to allow them to hire more quickly.

We do not improvise a specialist in ecological agriculture

Assuming that the issue of the incentive to employ influence structures is administratively and expeditiously settled, will job seekers’ capabilities actually adapt to the demands of the next decade? Jobs in environmental and societal transformation require specific skills, both technical and behavioral. We don’t improvise as professionals in agroecology, building energy regeneration, or even the circular economy. Behaviorally speaking, the coming crises will require innovation. Skills in creativity, adaptability, citizen mobilization, facilitation, or even change management will be essential to building our future society.

What do we start with? To promote upskilling of as many people as possible, consider these sectors as professions in shortage and allocate a portion of your apprenticeship budget to support these skills. This could go through a CPF contribution to any training in these professions and skills, or even the creation of a specific fund for youngsters. And since training also goes through experience, we invite you to familiarize yourself with unionism as an educational unit in itself, similar to what can already be done in certain universities, such as the University of Paris for example. One thing is for sure, nothing is more formative than the verb.

Transfers support

Finally, and this would be a great Social Security service, let’s allow as many people as possible not to go on sick leave or quit, but to reorient themselves. According to Audencia’s job_that_makesense study mentioned above, the first hurdle to retraining is towards the financial impact, because you have to fund retraining (training, unemployment period, etc.) and accept a potential salary drop. On this topic, the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation estimates an average of 10% of the wage gap between the private sector and the traditional sector.

To resolve these difficulties and succeed in the major redirects we advocate, let us support these redirects as best we can through financial measures in particular. Imagine extending reassignment leave to employees who wish to reorient themselves toward a career in environmental and societal transformation, not just under a job protection plan. And since the future is by definition uncertain, as the next few years are going to get chaotic, let’s create a lifelong routing and forwarding service. And maybe then, on Monday morning, we will not go to work anymore, we will go and contribute to the march of the world …


The first signatories

Jean-Christophe Perrin, Fabien Sicheri and the entire jobs_that_makesense team,

Florent Guignard and Antoine Dujardin (Le Drenche), Laetitia Vasseur (stop programmed obsolescence), Muriel Papin (no plastic in nautical), Marie Nguyen and Antoine Coloud (Wedresfer), Comme de Cousteau-Bressac (La Joist), Claire Pietro (Not Joist) Pépites Vertes), Hélène De Vestele (Edeni), Anne Le Corre (Ecological Spring), Océane Puech (GreenScale),