La Poste Group has announced plans to hire an additional 5,000 postal workers in response to a major review of working conditions within the company.
The French postal operator revealed it will recruit 15,000 people by 2014, instead of the 10,000 originally planned, in the wake of the Kaspar Report recommendations issued this week.
The summer-long review of quality of life for La Poste employees by the former union boss Jean Kaspar, prompted by two staff suicides earlier this year, concluded on Tuesday that a big improvement in social dialogue within the Group was needed as the company goes through major modernisation initiatives.
Kaspar also stated the need for thousands more workers to improve working conditions and reduce stress within the workforce.
La Poste Group president Jean-Paul Bailly (pictured right) responded today with plans to slow his company’s organizational changes, bring in new ways to engage with workers during the modernisation process, and also initiate a “major investment effort” in training – to benefit every postal worker – from 2013.
The 5,000 additional workers being taken on will also fit with government policy to boost youth employment, La Poste said.
The French universal postal service provider has gone through significant transformation in recent years to improve the performance of its public service mission and create value for customers.
The company said it was still facing economic and social issues such that each business division was facing “profound changes” – but accepted following the Kaspar Review that its relationship with staff must also evolve.
At a local level, 125,000 postal workers involved in a consultation process in March this year following two staff suicides earlier in 2012, expressed the desire to be better heard and supported by management.
La Poste said in response to the Kaspar recommendations, its president endorsed the review’s ambitions.
The decentralisation process within La Poste’s management transformation will now be supported by transferring human resources professionals to operate locally by the end of this year, with a EUR 20m training programme for local staff set to be accelerated.
An institute of management will be created to support the decentralisation process, which was blamed for some of the stress being suffered by workers feeling out of their depth as they gained more responsibility.
Bailly has appointed Georges Lefebvre, La Poste’s managing director, to coordinate the changes in labour relations and improve company unity.
Sylvie François, the current human resources director of La Banque Postale, La Poste’s financial services arm, is to take on the role of deputy managing director in charge of human resources at the Group. He will be set a priority to lead negotiations with postal unions and ensure that pledges are kept.
Another important change will see Mediapost Group chairman Nathalie Andrieux becoming deputy director general in charge of developing La Poste’s digital offerings, which the company said was a “key challenge”.
La Poste Group has around 268,000 employees generating EUR 21.3bn in turnover in 2011 in the processing and delivery of 25.6bn letters and packages each year.
Source: Post&Parcel/La Poste Group