Thursday, February 2, 2017

EDF will eliminate more than 5,000 positions, Le Figaro

The group’s situation leads him to harden the headcount reductions that were announced a year ago. The unions cite the risk to the sustainability of the missions of the company.

times change at EDF. Until now, the major projects of the group were industrial with large projects: construction of the EPR of Flamanville (Manche), the next generation reactor ; initiation of the “great shroud”, the program of modernization of nuclear power plants to prolong their life expectancy ; increase the capacity of renewable energy… But the head requires in its turn, as a topic of major concern: on Thursday, at the end of a central works council (CCE), the company has revised upward the number of job cuts, confirming the information of the Figaro.

The new medium-term plan (MTP), which covers the period 2017-2019, provides for a reduction of 6 % of the workforce is approximately on the perimeter of EDF SA – that is to say, EDF in France, with the exception of its two subsidiaries, electricity transport Network (RTE) and Enedis (ex-ERDF). All in all, well over 5000 posts that will be deleted within three years. EDF refuses to give a more accurate number, arguing that the decline of 6 % refers first to a path with possibilities of variation margin. The scale of the entire group, this decline could be closer to 7 %, according to several observers.

The energy producers in Europe are faced with declining consumption, falling prices of wholesale electricity and increased competition.

the announcement of the direction has the effect of a cold shower in EDF, a company which more than any other is not accustomed to headcount reductions. On the contrary: between 2011 and 2016, under the reign of Henri Proglio, and the beginning of one of Jean-Bernard Lévy, 20,000 people have been recruited. Thursday’s announcement goes even more wrong that the company never knew of such a plan of headcount reduction. It will not be offset by the recruitment of 2500 people this year and in 2018.

By January 2016, a year ago exactly, the group had provided on a PMT, covering the period 2016-2018, and provides for a 5% decrease in the number of agents. EDF insisted then on the need to “adapt to its environment”. The fact that this program is now hardened means, according to many analysts, that the company should redouble its efforts to face an economic climate more severe for energy producers in Europe. They must confront the declining consumption, falling prices of wholesale electricity and increased competition.

EDF stressed that there will be no layoffs and that many support measures are planned. Thursday afternoon, the elected representatives of the CEC have immediately reacted by stressing that “the deletions of massive and blind posts the” do more “to ensure a service of quality”. The unions point to both “sacrifice on the industrial strategy and on the missions of public service”.

For a representative of the personnel, the headcount reduction is conspicuous, in addition to its magnitude, by the fact that all the branches of the company are affected: business units, management, trade support functions… “Seen from afar, one has the impression that some of the functions are remote from the core business of the company, but it is false. For example, the maintenance operations of the nuclear fleet, which climb to around 3 billion euros per year, to mobilize skills extremely varied.”

within the staff of EDF, we take good note of this wave of protest. But we remind you that the company is engaged in a movement of mutation without precedent. In the framework of the plan Cape town 2030, the electrician plans to double its capacity in the clean energy all-in-densifier its positions in the nuclear sector. This transition energy which is harnessed EDF will not go smoothly.


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