published on 10 May 2021

Hervé Montjotin " With Sport dans la Ville, the alliance works extremely well ".

Hervé Montjotin, Executive Chairman of the SOCOTEC Group, talks about the "Rebond Favorable" program and the partnership with our Association Sport dans la Ville
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    What is the principle of favourable rebound?

The " Rebond Favorable " program offers sixty young people in 2021, living in disadvantaged neighbourhoods, the opportunity to train within the SOCOTEC Group in professions such as that of technician. In addition to academic training, this program offers them on-the-job training with tutors, as well as the opportunity to take their driving test. Rebond Favorable lasts for nine months with a permanent contract at the end for those who have shown real motivation and adaptability. SOCOTEC's ambition is to take at least fifty young people through this program.

  • What is the nature of the partnership with Sport dans la ville ?

The alliance with Sport dans la Ville works extremely well. Our company has a dynamic, an ambition which goes beyond the economic dynamic which sets us in motion on this project. But we don't know how to recruit young people who don't read job advertisements. Sport dans la Ville brings us the ability to reach out to these young people who come from so-called difficult suburbs, and who are generally far from the world of employment. The Association also brings us the experience and the reflexes to accompany these young people who are far from professional references.

We give them the opportunity to train in the field and at school to get a real job. We even go so far as to help some young people pass their driving test, because in the context of our activity, we need people to be able to get around by car. It's a partnership that works extremely well.

  • What about your commitment to this project?

This requires a lot of commitment from the whole company, from the manager to the tutor. I often tell my teams that when you embark on this type of project, you have to be prepared for all kinds of discouragement because there are many obstacles. There are a thousand reasons to give up, but a thousand more to lift them. It is a massive element of collective pride. I don't do it for that, but I expect this type of initiative to be a big driver of commitment for my teams.

  • What is the key to the success of this project?

First of all, the know-how of Sport dans la Ville to accompany us. We are talking about giving young people a framework, such as arriving on time, understanding that the company is an environment with its own codes, i.e. that you cannot behave in the same way in a company as outside. There are many things which are normally acquired and obvious but which may not be so for young people who have not necessarily been confronted with this in their lives. It is therefore important to remind them of these basic things and Sport dans la Ville does it very well, better than us. In return, we offer great opportunities.

  • Can you tell us more about tutoring?

Each young person has a tutor who is not necessarily the one with whom he or she undertakes the assignments in the field but who is the one who will follow their professional progress. It is a form of mentoring for these young people, to support them in their progress. I was surprised because there were many applications.

  • Why did you launch Positive Rebound? 

Rebond Favorable is part of SOCOTEC's CSR challenges, of which there are 3: Growing our talents, Environmental transition and Social inclusion.

And we are right there with Rebond Favorable. Our ability to make our modest contribution to social inclusion is something that is close to my heart. Rebond Favorable at SOCOTEC goes hand in hand with the apprenticeship initiative. We are the first in our industry to have our CFA, in our Testing, Inspection and Certification industry. It allows us to develop traditional apprenticeships with young people who use the 'adverts', but it is also a foundation that we will use to undertake initiatives such as Rebond Favorable.

  • How did the idea of Favorable Rebound come about?

It's really collective intelligence. In September 2017, I tried to make a first attempt with Sport dans la Ville , which I knew from before, but it was too early, it wasn't the right time, I couldn't get the managers' attention. Since then, the company has changed enormously. In 2019, we took up the subject of apprenticeship and inclusion and we saw that the region gave us access to funding which enabled us to envisage something more ambitious. There is no one who said one day, here we are going to do Rebond Favorable, it was built like that. The timing was right.

  • What has this program brought to SOCOTEC?

In concrete terms, when we have finished, this will bring us fifty young people. If we recruit a thousand people, let's imagine, this would represent 5%, which is extremely rational. But the great contribution is the pride of belonging.

  • Is this a project to be duplicated?

We're going to stay the course. The question is that it takes time and energy. For the moment, the projects have been a little too concentrated on the Paris region for my taste. So there is the question of being able to deploy these initiatives outside the Paris region. But there is also the question of funding.

  • In the end, is this project a success?

It's a little early to call it a success, but it's far enough along to say that it's the beginning of success for many of the young people involved in Rebound Favorable
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