International exchange of apprentices
In the course of globalisation, the demand for qualified specialists with international experience, intercultural competence and knowledge of foreign languages is increasing. Internships abroad – preferably during on-the-job training – are the best way to qualify employees and attract young motivated apprentices.
Therefore, CAEF promotes an unbureaucratic exchange of apprentices in Europe.
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Frequently Asked Questions
What is an apprenticeship?
An apprenticeship is an industry-driven, high-quality career pathway where employers develop and prepare their future workforce. Individuals obtain paid work experience, classroom instruction, mentorship and a nationally-recognized reference.
Apprenticeship training is distinguished from other types of workplace training by several factors
- An apprenticeship is an initial vocational training
- The company plays an active role and takes responsibility
- Training takes place both at the workplace by on-the-job learning and at school by job-related classroom training
- On-the-job learning is conducted in the work setting under direction of a mentor
What are the benefits of an exchange for your foundry?
It is a great opportunity to motivate your apprentices and to reward your talented young professionals with an internship abroad. It could also be a successful way to increase the attractiveness and perception of your company for future trainees. Moreover, the hosting Foundry benefits from fresh perspectives on its own business. Besides, it is a great chance to expand your European network.
- advantages in competition for well-educated school graduates
- apprentices become better skilled, more flexible, experienced and versatile
- fresh perspectives on your own business
- advertisement, e.g. by press articles
- many more…
What are the benefits of an exchange for apprentices?
The best way to acquire international skills is to study and work abroad — ideally during training. An exchange will broaden the horizon. It gives the opportunity to gain great experiences during on-the-job-training in another foundry. Furthermore, the trainees will acquire social proficiencies, cultural skills and improve their language skills. They will get more self-confident, are highly motivated and show more initiative. They have become familiar with other work processes and techniques as well as new technologies and bring new impulses and ideas with them.
When is the best time for the exchange?
As a company, you determine the time by yourself in consultation with the trainee.
The stay abroad should not interfere with the education at school. The best time to do an internship abroad depends entirely on the training and the company. But it makes sense, if the apprentices have already gained some experiences. Therefore, the time after the intermediate examination or directly after the completion of the training is a good time to go abroad.
The ideal duration varies according to the objective. However, two to four weeks is optimal. Ultimately, the training company decides whether and for how long to send its trainees abroad for learning purposes.
The internship abroad is a period of training completed abroad for learning purposes and no vacation.
Which forms of exchange exist?
An individual exchange is a mobility project of an individual apprentice, who is doing an internship abroad in a foundry.
A company that sends its trainees abroad dismisses their workforce during this time. To compensate for this to a certain extent, a bilateral exchange of trainees is a good solution. This exchange includes a return visit from the host foundry from abroad.
When should I start the preparation?
A planning phase of four to six months is a realistic measure for individual trainees, who would like to complete a stay abroad.
Are the education systems of all European countries similar to each other?
The education systems are partly very different. To find out how the individual education system is organised in the partner country, please visit www.euydice.org.
The trainee may prepare the following application documents and submit them to CAEF
- curriculum vitae — describing, among other things, the level of education, language skills and social skills
- short letter of application
- job description — the mere job title is usually not meaningful enough and may differ from the corresponding job description in the host country
Is there on-site support in the host country?
This should be clarified before the exchange.
The contact person of the foundry registers at the CAEF contact list.
For a training company no additional costs occur. The companies are not obliged to pay the travel and accommodation costs. These costs might be fully covered by a funding programme.
Erasmus + is one of the possible funding opportunities. Funding via Erasmus+ is possible up to one year after the final examination. Different opportunities:
1. CAEF applies for Erasmus+ scholarships
2. The vocational school applies for the scholarship
3. As a company, you have the opportunity to submit your own Erasmus+ application
For more information and to discuss the best possibility for your company, please get directly in contact with us.
Apprentices should have private insurance for the duration of the stay abroad in order to ensure comprehensive protection. In any case, the following are important:
- an international health insurance
- a private liability insurance and
- an accident insurance at the workplace
- a liability insurance at the workplace
Generally, the protection provided by social insurance schemes (pension, health, nursing and accident insurance) continues within the EU. This must be checked and confirmed by the respective health insurance company.
The same applies to liability insurance. Liability insurance at the workplace covers damage caused by the trainee at the workplace. The trainee, the sending organisation or the host organisation shall provide liability insurance at the workplace. As a rule, the regular liability insurance does not provide protection for processing and activity damage in the foreign company. In this regard, you should seek advice from your insurers at an early stage.
Depending on the type of stay abroad, accident insurance is provided by the training company, the employer or the vocational school. The decisive factor is that either the training company or the employer has agreed to the stay abroad or the vocational school has the organisational area of responsibility. An additional private accident insurance is also advisable but not mandatory.
There are a number of inexpensive combination offers from various insurance companies that cover internships abroad. These include foreign health, liability and accident insurance and may be taken out on a monthly or daily basis.
Is a passport or visa necessary?
A distinction must be made between EU and non-EU countries. In the EU only a valid identity card is required.
The Workers Directive came into force 1996. In May 2018, the European Union revised the Posting of Workers Directive and implemented the principle of “equal payment for equal work in the same place”. This means that for posted workers throughout Europe the same wage and working conditions apply as for domestic workers. All EU members need to transpose the new regulations into national legislation by 30 July 2020.
The requirements vary from country to country. CAEF supports the foundries to meet all requirements.
Please note: We make no claim to completeness.
Contact and Support
CAEF provides information regarding general conditions for an international exchange of apprentices. In addition, CAEF supports to find an adequate foreign partner foundry as well as appropriate financing.
Do you have any questions? Would you like to know more about internships abroad? Talk to us! We will be happy to advise you.
Tel.: +49 211 6871 301