The pool and spa sector is booming, and currently facing several significant challenges including recruitment to a wide range of job positions, and building the skills of its workforce in fields such as home automation, digital tech, sustainable development and new sales techniques.

Initiatives are being set up to meet these needs and Piscine Global Europe has built a reputation as a place for discussing and finding solutions to assist professionals in this regard.

Pool & Spa, an attractive sector which is actively recruiting in many areas and building the skillsets of its professionals

Since staff professionalisation and recruitment are two key issues for the sector, Piscine Global Europe is joining forces with the FPP to organise a first for 2022: a dedicated area within the exhibition called the Jobs and Training Campus.

The Jobs and Training Campus, a dedicated area at Piscine Global Europe 2022

This area will bring together initial and continuing training organisations that will be on hand to answer questions from employers, employees, jobseekers, adults making a career change, and young people in education.

Focusing on continuing education, apprenticeship, career opportunities within the trade, and options for recruitment, the programme set up within the exhibition will feature:

  • workshops providing concrete answers to specific issues: How do you write a job advert? How do you conduct a recruitment interview? And many more besides,
  • advice for professionals from training and recruitment organisations,
  • a job fair presenting current vacancies in the sector,
  • talks on forward-looking and cutting-edge topics, at the Pool Design Arena.

Significant challenges in recruitment and professional skills development

Like many other manual work sectors, the swimming pool sector suffers from a lack of appeal while also facing significant needs in terms of recruitment and building the skills of its workforce.

Jean-Pierre Marcati, a director of the FPP (French Federation for Pool and Spa Professionals) and manager of the PISCINES de France company, shares his specialist insight on this issue. "A pool technician is an "all-rounder" who has to master several trades such as electricity, plumbing and waterproofing... This is not a job that can be improvised, especially since techniques are developing and becoming more specialised, in fields such as smart home systems and automation, for example. To meet these needs for both basic and ongoing training, the FPP is taking action and setting up more training centres all over France. All professionals are now within a 2-hour drive of a training centre. Comprehensive programmes are thus proposed via the "Pool Trades" vocational certificate (Brevet Professionnel, or BP), and through continuing education and qualifications for adults who are already working in the sector or changing careers.

To support its members with their recruitment and training needs, the FPP is developing a range of communication resources and actions. These actions include partnerships with training centres, work in conjunction with the French employment agency and chambers of trade, a Job Exchange on the FPP website, and promotional campaigns at regional trade exhibitions, in training forums, in the specialist swimming pool and student press, and on social media (Facebook, Instagram, YouTube)...

Two forces are combining: the strength of the professionals via the FPP, and a favourable reception from the world of education and training (apprentice training centres, high schools, etc.). There is a real coming-together; a synergy that we can harness to meet our recruitment and training challenges!"

Attracting candidates without prior training into the pool trade

While demand is high for pool technicians, all trades are concerned by the need to recruit, from engineers to sales representatives. Opportunities abound in this buoyant sector; both for young people looking for jobs and for people who are already in work and looking for a career change.

Building a swimming pool requires a variety of skillsets including construction, waterproofing, urban planning rules, earthworks, plumbing, electricity, water treatment, heating, home automation and safety.

In addition to the initial "Pool Technician" vocational certificate currently available at nine training centres (with five more in the pipeline), the FPP also proposes specific training courses for adults who are changing career paths.

This range of continuing education courses, provided by training establishments and some adult vocational training agencies (AFPA), enables jobseekers and professionals from other sectors to acquire the skills they need to work in the pool trade.

Professionals who are already in the trade can also follow training courses to develop their skills in areas such as pool hydraulics, water treatment and management, electricity, after-sales services, and plant rooms.

7 key selling points for recruiting a pool professional

Jobs in the pool sector have appeal, but to attract applicants the right arguments need to be put forward... Several of the hard-hitters are listed below:

  • The wealth and diversity of careers in the pool industry
  • A flourishing sector assured of long-term growth
  • Opportunities to develop and learn through continuing education
  • Building a pool helps to build a happy family
  • The importance of building and maintaining relationships with customers
  • The pleasure of working outdoors
  • A profession where you can express your creativity

This edition of 2022 Piscine Global Europe will be the opportunity to bring the pool and spa professionals together to meet, discuss and address the future challenges facing their industry.