Employers’ associations

Employers’ associations, either in the form of inter-sectoral confederations or sectoral organizations, play a leading role in the development and implementation of Quality Apprenticeship training systems.

They have the following roles and responsibilities:

  • Engaging in social dialogue and actively participating in policy-making regarding Quality Apprenticeships, particularly at the sectoral level through sector skills councils;
  • Building confidence and trust among stakeholders;
  • Providing advice to policy-makers and assisting member enterprises;
  • Informing and encouraging enterprises to offer Quality Apprenticeship positions;
  • Where appropriate, incorporating Quality Apprenticeships into the agenda of collective bargaining and collective agreements;
  • Supporting the design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of Quality Apprenticeship programmes;
  • Contributing to the development of occupational competency and qualification standards;
  • Participating in assessment certification procedures;
  • Providing training for enterprises so that they can deliver quality on-the-job training.

Employers’ associations and trade unions come together in many countries, often in the context of sector skills councils, as mentioned in Chapters 5 and 9.  In France ‘consultative professional committees’, which are composed of representatives of employers’ associations, trade unions and the public authorities, have an important role to play within each sector (box 27).

Box 9: Advisory Professional Committees - France

 ‘Advisory professional committees’ advise on:

  • Qualification needs in the light of the development of occupations
  • The content of vocational qualifications
  • The positioning of National Education Qualifications in vocational qualifications frameworks.

Their role provides for the registration of vocational qualifications within the National Register of Professional Qualifications (RNCP).

There are 14 advisory vocational committees, organized by major professional sectors. Each has 40 members in four institutions: employers’ associations; trade unions, public authorities and qualified personalities.  A representative of the employers’ associations and a representative of the trade unions take it in turns to assume the presidency and the vice-chairmanship of each committee (Eduscol, 2012).