What jobs are on offer in Paris and the surrounding area?

Unemployment in France is falling and job creation is up, particularly in Paris which remains the powerhouse of the slightly unbalanced French economy - accounting for around a third of the country's GDP.

What jobs are on offer in Paris and the surrounding area?
Paris is home to an increasing number of tech startups. Photo: AFP

Unemployment in France is at its lowest level in a decade and thousands of new jobs are being created.

READ ALSO Why 2020 is set to be a good year for job hunters in France

But the economic boost is not being felt evenly across France, with many jobs and industries being heavily concentrated in Paris.

While this is bad news for the 'left behind' areas of rural France and the small towns, it is good times for people who are job hunting in Paris or in the greater Paris Île-de-France region.

READ ALSO How to write the perfect CV for getting a job in France

French president Emmanuel Macron says he wants to rebrand France as 'the startup nation'. Photo: AFP

There are more than 16,000 new permanent CDI contracts on offer in Île-de-France, as well as more than 30,000 short term and temporary positions advertised.

Here's who the biggest new recruiters are predicted to be in 2020 in Paris.

The data comes from the French unemployment office Pôle emploi, combined with local chambers of commerce, unions, local authorities and companies, as well as the recruitment agency Adecco and was put together in a major data journalism exercise by French newspaper Le Parisien.

1. City Hall. Ville de Paris is one of the biggest employers in the city and is expected to need 2,200 people in 2020 just to replace employees who have retired or left. The scope of the jobs is very wide too from the lower skilled end such as street cleaners and gardeners to civil servants and city engineers and technical managers. Working for the French government (local or national) brings with it a range of employment perks such as secure employment, generous benefits and (for now) special pension regimes.

2. Healthcare. As a big city, Paris naturally has numerous hospitals. The Hopitaux de Paris hospitals trust alone is looking to recruit around 800 people in 2020 and is particularly in need of nurses, healthcare assistants and radiology staff.

3. Accountancy. The international accounting giant PWC has a major presence in Paris and is looking to recruit around 700 people in 2020, particular auditors and lawyers.

4. Digital. Digital, IT and outsourcing company Modis is looking to recruit 300 people in 2020, particularly software engineers, developers and project managers.

However these numbers only tell half the story, as Paris is also home to an increasing number of small technology or digital related businesses, often startups.

Nicolas Garnier, regional director for Paris at the Pôle emploi unemployment office, told Le Parisien: “There is a strong dynamic linked to the capital effect in a city where a number of company headquarters are located. In total, Paris is home to around 1.8 million jobs.
“The Parisian job market is under pressure in four sectors of activity, starting with the digital professions where programmers, coders, web designers and data scientists… are particularly in demand.”
Healthcare, care services such as childcare and care of the elderly and the service sector in hotels, restaurants and tourists businesses make up the other three major employers in the capital, he added.
There are also some big projects heading for the area in 2020 – Disneyland Paris is undertaking a major expansion and is looking for 8,000 new staff including architects, engineers and project managers as well as entertainment staff.
And the US banking giant JP Morgan Chase will be completing its move from London to Paris after purchasing a building capable of holding 450 people.

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How to get a summer job in France

As the summer holidays approach in France, many employers are looking for seasonal workers - so if you're looking for a summer job, here's how to go about it.

How to get a summer job in France

There are thousands of employment offers in France – a simple internet search for jobs d’été came up with numerous jobs boards offering work in France, while the government-backed Centre d’Information et de Documentation pour la Jeunesse (CIDJ) offers advice and information on all aspects of life for young people in France, including finding seasonal work and summer placements.

Sectors including agriculture, hospitality and tourism are always recruiting in the summer, seeking fruit-pickers, holiday camp workers and serving/hotel staff.

But what are the rules for people seeking summer jobs?

READ ALSO Vendange: What you really sign up for when you agree to help with the French wine harvest


Children from the age of 16 (under certain circumstances, the age limit drops to 14) who are legally resident in France can work as long as they have written authorisation from their parents or legal guardians. A model authorisation letter is available here

Those under the age of 18 cannot undertake certain jobs for health and safety reasons.

In the following circumstances, children as young as 14 or 15 can work during school holidays.

  • The holidays must last at least 14 days;
  • The child must work no more than half the days of the holiday – so, if a vacation period is two weeks, they can work for no more than one of those weeks;
  • The child is given ‘light duties’ that offer no risk to their safety, health, or development;
  • From the age of 15 and if the child has completed their troisieme education, a minor can register for an apprenticeship. 


Salary is usually paid monthly and will have a payslip. For those aged 18 and over, pay will be at least equal to the minimum wage.

 For those aged 14 to 17, who have less than six months’ professional experience, the minimum allowed rate is 80 percent of the minimum wage. For those aged 17 to 18, the rate rises to a minimum of 90 percent of France’s minimum wage.

  • The minimum wage in France is currently €10.85 gross per hour (€1,645.58 gross per month based on a 35-hour week);
  • the employment contract is fixed-term and can take different forms (fixed-term contract, seasonal employment contract, temporary employment contract, etc);
  • Seasonal employees are subject to the same obligations as the other employees of the company and have access to the same benefits (canteens, breaks, etc.).

Under 18s have certain additional protections:

  • between the ages of 14 and 16, during school holidays, employees on any contract cannot work more than 35 hours per week nor more than 7 hours per day;
  • They cannot work at night;
  • Those aged 14 to under 16 working during their school holidays can only be assigned to work which is not likely to harm their safety, their health or development.

Right to work in France

If you’re a French citizen or hold permanent residency in France then you have the right to work, but for foreigners there are extra restrictions.

Anyone who holds the passport of a EU/EEA country or Switzerland, is free to work in France or to travel to France seeking work without needing a visa or work permit.

Most other people will need permission to work in France – even if it’s only for a short period or for casual work such as grape-picking. Depending on your country of origin you may need a visa – everything you need to know about that is here.

In addition to the visa, you may also need a work permit, which is the responsibility of the employer.  To employ anyone in France for less than 90 days, an employer must get a temporary work permit – before the prospective employee applies for a short stay visa. This permit is then sent to the embassy at which the employee is applying for a visa.

If you come from countries including the UK, USA and Canada you can spend up to 90 days in France without a visa – but you may still need a work (convention d’accueil) if you want to work while you are here.

READ ALSO Six official websites to know if you’re planning to work in France

Certain countries have specific ‘seasonal worker’ visas on offer, for certain sectors which allows – for example – Canadians to come to France and work the ski season. 

Cash-in-hand jobs

Certain sectors which have a lot of casual workers – for example seasonal fruit-picking – do have cash-in-hand jobs, known in France as marché noir (black market) or simply travail au black (working on the black, or working illegally). 

This is of course illegal and working this way carries risks – as well as the possibility of losing your job if labour inspectors turn up you are also in a vulnerable position. If your employer suddenly decides not to pay you, or make unexpected deductions from your wages, there is very little you can do about it since you won’t have any kind of work contract.