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Management of human resources: L’Occitane

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  1. Introduction
  2. An overview of human resources in the company
  3. Strategy & HR planning in the company
  4. Organizational alignment & agility in the company
  5. Workforce engagement, capability & capacity in the company
  6. Succession planning in the company
  7. The european culture & international HR management
  8. Conclusion

Olivier Baussan founded the company l'Occitane in 1976. At the beginning the main idea was to manufacture natural products, thanks to ingredients coming from near Provence. L'Occitane's activity consists in providing natural and quality products for hair and body to favor wellbeing and quality of life. Olivier Baussan had this project because he was native of the region and grew up in Provence near Manosque. After selling these products in local market in Provence, he opened his first outlet in Volx close to Manosque in the south of France.

In 1982, he discovered the shea butter during a trip in Africa (Burkina-Faso). He chose to incorporate this new ingredient in his products. Traveling allowed him to be aware of social and environmental issues. From then on, his commitment to others and environment became the key values of the brand. Even if he is a founder of the brand, he remained anonymous for the large audience. There was no face in the brand advertising campaigns. All were focused on products. L'Occitane is not perceived as a leader . Today Olivier Baussan owns a little share of the company but the firm is growing more.

In 1991, Reinold Geiger, an entrepreneur, invested in L'Occitane. His first feeling about L'Occitane was: ? I would like to improve and develop the company but keeping its identity.? . In 1995 Reinold Geiger became the CEO of the firm. He was specialized in packaging of cosmetics. He decided to add ?en Provence? behind the brand name in order to insist on the brand regional roots. So, it was a success and it continued.

[...] Human Resources management has evolved to become one of the most strategic departments in companies tackling today's globalized markets. Actually, what is the point in spending money to develop a concept if employees are not qualified enough to make the idea grow and become a reality? This is the challenge of the 21st century's companies: giving their HR departments the means to inspire employees, to retain talents, to promote involvement and to create added value. Indeed, while competitors can easily copy most of products' technical specifications, a strong culture and an efficient motivation strategy are company's unique -and impossible to copy- key factor to success. [...]


[...] Strategic planning is consequently about adapting the company's HR strategy to forecasted needs, which are determined by the environment: identification of customer needs and determination of business needs. Then, based on those external needs, the issue is to implement the four phases of Deming's PDCA model in order to build a relevant HR strategy. Indeed, HR department is a key business actor by making part of the global strategy. A strategic plan has to be implemented following specific steps. Below, you can see a table representing those steps' sequence. [...]


[...] It is the reason why it is interesting to understand what is the role of human resource management into the firm. In this report, we will focus on L'Occitane HR strategy through six core points. First of all, we will have an overview of the human resources in the company. Secondly, we will detail the HR strategic planning, the organizational alignment and agility in the company, the workforce engagement. Furthermore, we will summarize this development by introducing the company succession planning. [...]

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