First published: November 1, 2020. Updated: November 1, 2022
Why the funeral industry is hiring
With an average of around 650,000 deaths per year in France, the activity of funeral professionals is far from being at half mast. This year, the number of deaths recorded between January 1 and October 17, 2022 is 7.6% higher than that measured over the same period in 2019 (year without a pandemic).
In addition, societal developments make it more possible emergence of new services : death is more and more prepared during one’s lifetime (“ante mortem” services), cremations are increasing (one third of funerals in France vs 1% in 1980) as well as the demand for secular ceremonies, digital rituals are more accepted by bereaved families prevented from reuniting due to restrictive health measures due to covid, etc.
What positions to fill in the traditional funeral?
OGF is one of the leaders in the traditional sector, born from the consolidation of several houses. The company relies each year on a hundred executive hires to staff its agencies spread throughout the country.
No need to have a first experience in the field of funeral. What counts is the managerial experience and the obsession with quality of service.
Anne Quillet, Director of Career and Skills Planning at OGF
Recruitment of sales managers
The group carrying the PFG, Roblot, Henri de Borniol and Dignité Funéraire brands is looking for around 80 sales managers responsible for overseeing funeral agencies and counselors. “No need to have a first experience in the field of funeral. What counts is the managerial experience and the obsession with quality of service”says Anne Quillet, director of forward-looking career and skills management at OGF.
Hiring of operations managers in logistics centers
The funeral director is also looking for 30 operations managers for its logistics centers. “These are centers making coffins, masters of ceremony and all the equipment necessary for burials, available to our agencies”, she adds. Here, the key word is respecting often very short deadlines.
Recruitment in support functions: audit, digital, IT contracting authority
Finally, OGF is staffing its support functions by looking for digital project managersof the listeners, IT project managers or even developers for its Paris headquarters.
To avoid disappointment, we suggest that candidates come and discover the profession for one or two days in the field.
Anne Quillet, director of forward-looking career and skills management at OG
Solid life skills in the face of the taboo of death
“Even for recruitment at headquarters, candidates are invited to question their relationship to death, warns Anne Quillet. A management controller monitors, for example, the cremation rate, sales figures for coffins, urns… it is not neutral. The executives we are looking for must be solid because it is not insignificant to manage teams confronted daily with death and grieving families. Working in the funeral sector does not make it possible to relieve a grief that is still in progress. To avoid disappointment, we suggest that candidates come and discover the profession for one or two days in the field. Only the confrontation with the subject allows us to know if we are cut out for this activity… or not”.
What positions to take in “Death Tech”?
For a few years now, the major traditional players in the funeral industry have seen their market share eroded by “Death Tech” players. They bring together digital start-ups which, since 2013, have intended to disrupt services related to funeral rites.
Advitam: digitalization of the funeral organization
Advitam thus offers complete digitization of funeral preparations. This company with a mission is recruiting at the moment 4 executive profiles in IT, marketing and administrative development.
“Candidates should be aware that we do not offer a funeral service like any other. For example, our advisers are not commissioned on sales”we insist at Advitam.
So much there: connected funerary monuments
I aim for profiles that break with the profession and are able to adapt and innovate to break traditions.
Arno Dupré, co-founder of Tellement là
Tellement là is developing a range of temporary funerary monuments installed on the day of the funeral. And even an app directly connected to the monument. “Our business model is based on B to B and we only work with independent operators and not with franchisees”immediately specifies Arno Dupré, co-founder of Tellement là.
To ensure the development of his small business, he is currently recruiting a production manager. His job ? Manage the creation studio in charge of processing the photo of the deceased selected by the family as well as possible, which will then be affixed to the funeral monument. “We are also looking for a business development to forge new partnerships with independent operators. For these positions, I especially do not want candidates who have already worked in the traditional funeral sector. I aim for profiles that break with the profession and are able to adapt and innovate to break traditions”he adds.
A white rose: biographies of the deceased
Breaking codes is also what Pauline Ronez, founder of Une rose blanche, offers. “The death of a friend was a real shock. At the time, I was a strategy and organization consultant, but that was a non-professional choice. I thought about giving more meaning to my job and I had the idea of launching a book production service to remember and pay tribute to the deceased »sums up this social entrepreneur. Two years after its launch, its box generates around 120,000 euros in annual turnover. Nothing to hire permanently. But Pauline Ronez calls on freelance graphic designers and proofreaders to fulfill customer orders. So missions to seize!
Articles and podcast on funeral professions
Report from La Croix magazine: “You have to love people to do this job”: undertakers, they honor the dead and console the living
Marie Boëton is a journalist at La Croix L’Hebdo. On the occasion of All Saints’ Day, she chose to follow the daily life of several funeral directors in the city of Orléans.
Podcast on the reverse side of this same report
For further :
- The 3 professional funeral organizations:
– the French Federation of Funeral Directors (FFPF)
– the Confederation of Funeral and Marble Professionals (CPFM for the private sector)
– Union du Pôle funéraire public (UFPF, for the public sector)