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I have been working at AREVA full-time (Less than a year)
I am working for a subsidiary of Areva named Areva Solar. As a result, I have a view on both Areva and Areva Solar. Areva is a large multinational which takes care of its employees. Their policy is to keep their talented workforce and as such they avoid layoffs as much as possible. They also promote internal training and allow mobility inside the company, between the different branches and countries. For example, several employees from France were given the opportunity to work for the USA branches in order to bring in their skill-sets. Areva is also very technology oriented and encourages people from different departments to submit their ideas for patent writing. Areva Solar is currently hesitating between different technology solutions. It is in transition phase between the start-up (ex Ausra) phase and the full Areva integration. As a result, there are a lot of possibilities for people willing to take on new challenges.
Areva has the issues of most large corporations, namely excessive bureaucracy. They try to compound this by having a centralized help desk which is sometimes very efficient. However as certain organic decisions must sometimes be take in France, this can lead to frustrating delays. On the HR side, some decisions can seem unclear even though the firm prouds itself on its transparency. As mentioned previously, Areva Solar is in a transition phase. The downside of this is that certain strategic decisions are not thought through which results in the company going back and forth between various strategies. This leads to confusion of the workforce and eventually to loss of talent.
Advice to Management
Areva Solar should think its strategy through before jumping in with both feet. The market evolution over the next 10 years was only properly understood in the past few months. This needs to be properly mastered before taking important decisions. Taking on important projects which are not viable and without a proper cost analysis should also not happen again. This leads the company to hire contractors below market price and stresses the business relationships. This stress falls on the Areva Solar employees.