Groupama comment on outsourcing deal

Your news story, ‘Insurer snubs HR team over outsourcing plans’ (Personnel Today, 4 July) contains a number of inaccuracies and, on behalf of Groupama, I feel obliged to set the matter straight.

Groupama Insurances decided to outsource its recruitment function in March 2005. This decision was made after full and proper consultation with our HR staff, and the process was comprehensive and fully documented.

The eventual decision to outsource these activities was part of a deliberate, longer-term strategy to make the whole HR function both scaleable and flexible, to meet the needs of our growing business.

To suggest that we took any decision of this nature without consulting our staff is simply not correct.

We operate in a fast-moving industry where change is a fact of life and where we sometimes have to manage difficult issues. With this in mind, we have always taken the process of consultation very seriously so that staff views are properly represented before any proposals are implemented. This was certainly the case in this instance.

As is good practice in any area of external service provision, Groupama reviewed the outsourcing relationship some 12 months or so into the agreement. We reached the conclusion that the arrangement with Omni was not working for our business. In May this year, we brought the recruitment function back in-house and appointed a national resourcing manager.

This was an operational decision designed to improve efficiency, speed up the lead-time on recruitment, and to ensure adequate resourcing in one of our sites. While we still feel that outsourcing recruitment may be right for many businesses, it was not right for Groupama and, following full consultation within the business, our contract with Omni was withdrawn.

Paul Picknett, director of corporate services, Groupama Insurances

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