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ICN Business School and Clarion Europe SAS: a win-win relationship

Clarion is a company where you feel well!

It’s true that you have to push open the door of this company to understand that happiness at work exists in Lorraine and particularly in the Pompey industrial park.

It’s the wonderful discovery that was made by twenty students in their 2nd year of the Talent Management in Organisations (HR) track of ICN’s Grande Ecole programme, supervised by their professor Krista Finstad-Milion and welcomed by Estelle FERRY (accountant), Astrid GODEFROID (quality control), Christian COMPPER (repair service manager) and Jesus Hernandez (Director of Customer Service Dept. / CSD Senior Manager, Executive MBA 2008) Wednesday 17 May 2017.

Clarion is a Japanese company founded in 1940 which since 2006 belongs to the Hitachi group. The principle activity consists of supplying embedded information systems for the automobile sector. The company has been operating in France since 1983 at two sites: Vélizy and Custines (54).

Located at Custine are the central services (administration, finance, computer, quality, HR and Logistics) as well as after-sales service (call-centre for product repair). The Custines site today counts 80 employees and has Peugeot PSA as a key client.

« Happiness at Work », a reality for the employees of Clarion

« Happiness at work » was initiated two years ago. The change strategy was initially neither understood nor perceived positively by the employees who were accustomed to omnipresent hierarchy, centralised management and a compartmentalised work environment.

Little by little, employees are opening up to the approach, becoming increasingly involved in taking initiatives and in building interpersonal relationships. Employees are becoming project leaders and they make choices concerning work space furniture and they carry out interior design projects. The director no longer has a designated office but moves from one area to another within the different services.

Today the concept has become a reality with the creation of open spaces, both collaborative and attractive: rest areas (free access to coffee machines and game consoles), well-being space (sports and massage rooms) and conviviality (beehives, outdoor patio). This new work environment encourages interpersonal communication and group cohesion. In addition, the employees are autonomous in organising their work schedules and holidays.

In short, the bet has paid off as can be seen by the absenteeism rate which in 2 years has dropped from 2.8% to 1.37 % today.

An approach which deserves to be known outside the company

This is where our students step in.  After a company visit and presentation, they were asked to take on an HR assignment and, in one hour’s time, carry out an analysis of Clarion and make recommendations on the following two issues:

  • How to integrate Clarion’s « Happiness at Work » strategy in the recruitment and selection process to attract and recruit the best candidates?
  • How to put into place an « employer branding » approach at Clarion while making the  « Happiness at work » approach more visible to the right candidates?

The challenge was met because the students were captivated by the subject and were consequently able to conduct a meaningful analysis of the issue and generate original recommendations. Our hosts were surprised by our students’ capacity to understand the issue and provide creative solutions, several of which the company participants made good note of. It is now up to Clarion to decide how to internally relay the recommendations and make concrete proposals for deployment with their HR and marketing services. And, if needed, Clarion can get back to us to accompany them for the implementation of a solution.

A good example of a win-win strategy between ICN and Clarion which illustrates well the need for partnerships between the world of education and the economic world.

Do you (or your company) have a managerial issue which you would like to deal with? Are you interested in a professional and external look in order to find new solutions?

Contact our school today and we will try to answer your needs in the best way possible.

Anne-Gaëlle Chassard – ICN Business School – – anne-gaelle.chassard@icn-artem.com

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