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Julie and Lucas: In action, on the field

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Julie, trained in occupational psychology, works for Carrefour France's Employment Centre and helps vulnerable people or people with disabilities to find employment. With her dynamic nature, she works out in the field, in line with her beliefs, and is involved in concrete initiatives – in high schools, for example. Lucas is a student enrolled at the Paris Dauphine University and sees a great deal of himself in this woman of action. He also wants to be involved in concrete initiatives in a meaningful job.

Lucas is a student enrolled at Paris Dauphine University who identifies himself with Julie and wants to have a job that is of use to society when he graduates. He talks to us about the values that he believes in.

 

Julie, Partnerships manager

The path that Julie took that would eventually lead her to become Partnerships Manager working with Carrefour France's Employment Centre (the retailer's internal recruitment firm) began at the University of Nanterre. While studying occupational psychology, she also worked at the checkout in a sports equipment shop. Once graduated, she started working on issues to do with integrating employees with disabilities. "The work was very interesting, but I wanted to expand my area of work. So I started looking for a company with a fully-fledged equal opportunities policy".

 

Julie started working with Carrefour when the Employment Centre was launched 10 years ago, and has been implementing a partnerships policy that focuses on three key areas: education, integration and employment. "The sheer diversity of the people who we recruit mirrors the diversity of our customers". To do so, Julie works with secondary schools and employment organisations, presenting the various jobs available within the Group. She works with numerous charity partners, including some supported by the Carrefour Foundation, on developing paths designed to enable people to access employment. To create pathways to employment with various stakeholders (or influencers), Julie coordinates the publication of job offers and helps to secure paths across a network made up of more than 1400 national and local partners (associations, local bodies set up to facilitate integration, Job Centres, etc.).

 

Carrefour's Employment Centre has 60 recruitment managers. They work alongside partners on creating schemes designed to provide solutions to both local issues and the company's recruitment aims. "By working alongside an association such as the Restos du Coeur, we have created a pathway leading to jobs in butchery. The association selected 19 beneficiaries who we supported and trained as part of block-release training schemes". The result: 14 people hired on training contracts via partnerships involving several stakeholders (Carrefour Foundation, the Restos du Coeur, Job Centre, etc.).

To manage the various schemes set up to implement the Group's HR policy, Julie facilitates discussions between Carrefour's entities (hypermarkets, supermarkets, warehouses, etc.) and their partners: "we also ensure that commitments made to our various contacts are upheld, and so are extremely present in the field". This presence involves meetings with 300 or so people doing these jobs, 13 coaching workshops (150 applicants accompanied) and 200 job-seekers welcomed on site visits over the last six months.

TESTIMONY
I'm lucky enough to have a job that fits in with my beliefs: the company has development and economic performance targets that I am involved in. So I help Carrefour to meet these targets by finding solutions to fundamental societal issues

The result is that Julie is "never in the office". On Tuesday, she is in Lens, Northern France, setting up a training/integration workshop at a meat processing plant, on Thursday she is chairing a steering committee meeting with partners and on Friday she goes to a professional secondary school in Parisian suburbs presentingjobs opportunities within Carrefour. “Young people know very little about food-related professions – such as fishmonger – even though they offer fine career opportunities. It's fantastic to open up a range of possibilities for them".

 

And this precise feature is central to her approach. "I'm lucky enough to have a job that fits in with my beliefs: the company has development and economic performance targets that I am involved in. So I help Carrefour to meet these targets by finding solutions to fundamental societal issues". This initiative with the Restos du Coeur – "this relatively small project" – is evidence of this approach: training for a profession that is hiring, co-development of the training programme with partners and integration of vulnerable people (85% success rate) "helping both the company and society".

 

Lucas, in his second year of a Master’s degree on social responsibility for organisations at Paris Dauphine University

After his baccalauréat, Lucas studied economics and management, and then business. "But I didn't exactly feel at home in an environment where what most of the students were focused on was simply earning as much money as possible once they started working". Following an internship with the Nef – an association operating on the social and solidarity economy field – he decided to enrol in a Master’s degree about social responsibility for organisations at Paris Dauphine University: “For me, it's important to find a job that has meaning, a job that makes me feel useful to society. This master's degree helps me with that".


According to Lucas, a job in the solidarity sector comes with opportunities to meet society head-on and talk to people on a one to one basis. Julie is lucky enough not to spend all her time at the office: "it must enhance your life to create partnerships which enable certain people cut off from the job market to get back to work and have career development opportunities". A useful job to society, which he hopes one day to obtain… Lucas recognises it in Julie's description: “What I like is that she is able to help the company meeting its economic development targets, while at the same time finding solutions to society's fundamental challenges".

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