Published on 21/09/2017

Quality of life in the workplace, a collective, long-term challenge for Societe Generale

For several years now, Societe Generale group has been committed to paying particular attention to its employees’ well-being, health and quality of life in the workplace. With the major transformation of its businesses picking up speed, Societe Generale’s analysis of quality of life in the workplace led to ambitious and concrete actions.

These days, quality of life in the workplace is a core issue for companies and employees. For Societe Generale, it is also a driver of sustainable, collective performance and efficiency, against a backdrop of increasingly rapid transformation of the Group’s businesses. The explosion of new technologies is causing our habits and our way of working to change, and is also leading employees to become increasingly discerning in terms of what they expect from their company. Based on these different observations, Societe Generale has implemented a human resources policy that is very clearly focused on its employees’ well-being and quality of life in the workplace. 

Quality of life in the workplace: a long-term commitment for Societe Generale

Developing commitment, increasing performance and creativity, improving employees’ day-to-day lives and preventing psycho-social risks are the goals that Societe Generale wanted to tackle in 2014, when the Group Executive Committee signed a charter entitled “15 commitments for a balanced work/home life”, launched by the French Ministry for Social Affairs, Health and Women’s Rights, and the OPE (French Observatory whose aim is to promote a better balance between work and home life), which asks its signatory companies to act in the interest of improving the work-life balance of their employees.

In 2015, an agreement on Quality of life in the workplace signed with the employee representative bodies demonstrated the desire to continue the actions initiated. More specifically, the goal was to improve the quality of collective work, and set aside time to allow employees to talk about their work, seek balance and effectively fulfil their professional and personal responsibilities.

Promoting collaboration and sharing of best practices

The Life At Work programme is also part of this initiative. The purpose of Life At Work is to share and increase awareness of the initiatives underway at the Group, and promote new ones. With over 2,600 active members on the company’s social network, Life at Work is the Group’s largest community. The programme is based around six themes: individual and collective efficiency, working environment, health and safety, key life events and benefits, working from home and new methods to organise working hours, and management.
Moreover, Societe Generale is among the leaders in France in terms of number of telecommuters, since the launch of the work from home scheme in 2013.

Progress towards the bank of tomorrow 

Societe Generale is supporting a number of projects to ensure that this commitment becomes a long-term vision.

The Dunes technology hub, to the east of Paris, embodies the Group’s digital transformation and is a recent example of one of these projects. A genuine breeding ground of current and future trends in terms of organisation and the quality of life in the workplace, this location offers employees an open, collaborative and connected work space.

The Move programme was launched by the HR teams to continue to transform how we work alongside and support employees. This programme has four themes: developing collective intelligence, increasing autonomy and responsibility, fostering new, more collaborative working methods and promoting the use of new work spaces. Through workshops and test areas, the community of Move volunteers has tested over 100 innovations since the beginning of the year. This iterative, experimental system is part of a long-term strategy and is being developed throughout Societe Generale group.

“The way we view working methods has been completely transformed and continues to change very quickly. Quality of life in the workplace is achieved by a management culture that leads by example and develops our teams’ commitment and creativity. Our new, more agile, less vertical and centralised organisation is a key part of this approach”, says Caroline Guillaumin, Group Head of Human Resources at Societe Generale.

Press contact:
Astrid Fould-Bacquart +33 (0) 1 56 37 67 95