Tribune. It is necessary to change the way we look at work by putting it back at the heart of the production process in order to reduce the gap between prescribed work and actual work and to make the trades in the industry more attractive.
"The job is lost," the Turbomeca trade unionists were repeating about fifteen years ago. It is only gradually that the gravity of this phenomenon and the extent of the evil appeared. Today, the report is widely shared. Work is in crisis, it has become invisible, as Pierre Yves Gomez points out in The Invisible work (François Bourin, 2013).
During the first half of XXe century, Taylorism settled in France. In this organizational model, the work is defined by those who know: bureau of methods and first level management, often out of the ranks. It is well suited to a population with low education level. "The scientific organization of work" allows considerable productivity gains. But little by little, an individual expertise of the "profession" emerges in the workshop. A series of initiatives are emerging to reduce the gap between prescribed work and actual work through continuous improvement. At the same time, the management company is making its appearance, with its dashboards, its "reporting" and the obsession with the short term. The profile of the fieldwork changes. He knows less and less the job, is less interested in work. And most importantly, the work continues to be designed by people who do not realize it.
Move the concept of customer
Applying the concept of design to work allows you to change your look. The definitions of design are many, but we always find the associated customer, uses, design, ergonomics, interfaces and visual appearance. Talking about job design shifts the notion of customer. The product customer "work" is not the end customer, but the one who does the work. This implies that the sole purpose of the design can not be end-customer satisfaction (usage / cost / quality / lead time), and that those who produce the product are also considered customers of the design process.
By considering the user of the work as a customer, we change our view on the contribution of the operator who ceases to be a simple utility contributing to the productive process. Such a change can play a very powerful role in resolving the crisis of work representations, as Laurence Decréau explains in her book Storm on work representations (Presses des Mines, 2018).