In France, employees have in the past accrued each year 20 hours of Individual Right to Training (“droit individuel à la formation” or “DIF”) up to a maximum of 120 hours.
Law 2014-288 of 5 March 2014 has now come into force and has substantially amended the previous law, notably by replacing the DIF with a Personal Training Account (“compte personnel de formation” or “CPF”).
Under these new provisions, all French companies must implement the following actions:
- Before 31 January 2015: inform employees of their accrued but unused training time rights as at 31 December 2014. Planned training granted prior to 31 December 2014 but due to be conducted in 2015 must be classed as “consumed” in advance and so need not form part of the information to be given to the employee.
- Before 7 March 2016: conduct career development interviews with all employees hired before 7 March 2014. The meeting aims to review the progression prospects of each employee and take stock of training undertaken with the general intention of putting self-advancement back on the agenda of both employers and employees to the hoped-for benefit of both. For employees hired after 7 March 2014, the deadline for the first interview is two years after their date of hire.
- Every 2 Years: to maintain career momentum at an individual level and upskill the French workforce as a whole, each employee should have a self-development session of this sort with his employer at least once every two years. If the employer does not arrange this, the employee may be credited with additional training hours off work.
- Employees are now entitled to a minimum of 24 hours’ training per year (rather than 20) up to 120 hours. Once this limit is reached, they gain an additional 12 hours of training per year up to a maximum of 150 hours. Note: accrued but unused DIF hours are not taken into account for the 120 and 150 hour limits and can be used until 1 January 2021.
- As the rights are now attached to the person, not the job, employees retain their rights to time off for training even through dismissal or resignation and into their successive employers.
As of 5 January 2015, employees are responsible for opening their personal training account on the website: “moncompteformation.gouv.fr” and should include their number of DIF hours. The website contains details of training courses approved for these purposes.