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Interview with Jimmy Martin, Kedger and founder of Certifopac, which offers Qualiopi certification to organisations!

2015 KEDGE graduate, Jimmy Martin, is the founder of this leader in the field of vocational training


To begin, tell us about your educational background. What did you study, both before and at KEDGE?

I started at KEDGE in 2012 after having completed two years of preparatory school. During my first year, in Marseille, I acquired and strengthened my skills in management sciences and management. My profile was more of an academic one so I wanted to improve my CV by getting a solid stint in a company. That's why I did a work-study programme in EDF’s national training department during the two years I studied for my master. The rhythm of spending four months in school and eight months in a company was very smooth from an organisational point of view. It also let me have a great experience doing a university exchange in the magnificent Italian city of Florence.




Were you a member of any student associations when you were at KEDGE?

I was a member of two student associations while at KEDGE. I joined the UNIS-TERRE association (United Earth) and, in particular, worked on the “Coup 2 Pouce" project. That enabled me to practice my for first aid (I was a non-commissioned volunteer firefighter) by offering offer the students first aid training courses in partnership with the Red Cross. At the same time, I went out with the Red Cross street teams at night in the poor districts of Marseille.

I’m also proud to say that I created the student simulation project "La Nuit de la Krise" (the Night of Crisis) which has been very popular to date. It holds two events a year in Marseille and Bordeaux where groups of students are put in a crisis situation with very diverse scenarios, such as a fire in a building, hostage-taking of the board of directors, “bad buzz” (negative messages about the company) on social networks, etc. The educational and operational objectives are many, including communicating effectively in a crisis situation, managing under duress, securing the building, preserving the production facilities, etc. We succeeded in establishing high-quality partnerships, in particular with the Bataillon des Marins-Pompiers de Marseille (Marseille Naval Fire Battalion). The project continues to operate and has the participation of the French national police, the Army, and private companies.



Tell us what you did after your studies were finished. What positions have you held? What did you learn in those positions?

I finished my work-study contract at EDF after I got my degree, then worked as a project management consultant at SOPRA STERIA. Specifically, I was in charge of supervising and training EDF staff to rapidly increase their skills on its nuclear power plant management software. I also organised training and auditing activities for EDF Group employees.

That job required a very high degree of availability and mobility, which wasn’t really in line with what I wanted to do with my life. In 2016, I had the opportunity to create my own training agency and thus became self-employed. The successes came one after another, and my portfolio of partners and clients kept growing for more than three years. I’ve led numerous training and support activities for entrepreneurs, craftsmen, and merchants who wanted to develop their online presence and improve their managerial skills. That was when I specialised in digital marketing and Microsoft Excel. I’ve always kept with, and continued to increase my skills. In particular, I got a "Microsoft Office Specialist" certification on Excel, an accreditation provider certificate, and the AFNOR accreditation.



What are you doing today? What gave you the idea and the desire to do what you’re doing today?

In 2018, I thoroughly read the Avenir Professionnel Loi (bill on the freedom to choose one’s professional future) sponsored by Murielle Pénicaud, who was the Minister of Labour at the time. I noted that it obliged all training organisations to obtain a quality certification if they wanted to continue to benefit from their clients' public funds within the framework of their care (for example within the framework of the CPF (Compte Personnel de Formation - Personal Training Account). I carried out a market study and discovered the size of a market - more than 40,000 training providers! So I founded Certifopac, which accredits companies whose activities include skills development. We offer Qualiopi certification for vocational training institutes, as well as skills assessments, VAE (Validation of Acquired Experience), and CFAs (Chartered Financial Analyst) designations.

 More precisely, we carry out compliance assessment audits of quality standards. Once the training institute meets all the required criteria we issue the Qualiopi certification. After that, surveillance and accreditation audits are carried out.



What are your development objectives?

We are an accreditation agency that has revitalised the market – we are young, digital, agile, and work on a human scale.

Our objectives are straightforward: maintain a high level of customer satisfaction while guaranteeing an efficient, practical, and high value-added user experience.

We want to change the rules in a market that has a bad reputation. For us, as an accreditation agency, it’s not just about charging for our audit services and then moving on to the next one. It’s about creating a relationship of trust and becoming an ally in the development of the company while sticking to the required ethics of neutrality, impartiality, independence, and confidentiality.



If you were to give advice to any KEDGE graduate who wants to do something similar, what would it be?

Don’t be afraid! Or at least learn to live with any fears you may have about your project. Fears are normal: fear of others, fear of imperfection, fear of mistakes, fear of... There is no magic formula to avoid the notorious impostor syndrome. You have to work hard, learn new things, and become an expert in your field!

KEDGE gave me what I needed to improve my interpersonal skills, and it opened my eyes to the possibilities opened to me by mastering management sciences and entrepreneurship. It was an essential step in my career path that I am proud to draw attention to. I even hope that one day I’ll provide KEDGE with Qualiopi certification.

Anything you’d like to add? A message to pass on?

Help spread the word about Certifopac by telling all the independent trainers, training organisations, and chartered financial analysts you know about what we have to offer!



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