According to Ivanti’s latest report on the experiences of women working in the Tech sector, in France for 62% of the women surveyed, stereotypes play in favour of men in being named to upper management positions. The glass ceiling still seems to exist for women in high-tech sectors. How can this situation be remedied within a company? We talked with Cécile Espinassous, Director of Human Resources, and Stéphanie Limouzin, Chief Business Development Officer at CLS Group. They explained the vision of CLS, which puts the values of equality and equity into practice on a daily basis.
Where does CLS stand in terms of gender equality?
Cécile Espinassous, Head of Human Resources at CLS: CLS is a company with human values, values that go hand in hand with its mission and its DNA! This DNA has always led CLS to conduct its business and achieve its missions with principles of fairness and equality, principles that are in line with its vision of studying and protecting the planet from space.
We apply these principles on a daily basis in the management of our employees. With regard to professional equality between women and men, CLS published its pay equity results for the second consecutive year, as required by French law. For 2019, we achieved a very good score of 99/100 on the index. This results from the staffing at CLS which, at the end of 2019, had 43% women managers and 41% women employees. We are proud of this female representation, which is also reflected in promotions: 52.3% of which were women in 2019!
How do you manage gender equality in your company?
Cécile Espinassous, Head of Human Resources at CLS: It’s very simple: you don’t manage it! We simply make decisions based on competence! We strive to be objective when it comes to recruiting, developing, encouraging, rewarding and remunerating. There is no question as to whether we have a man or a woman in front of us. We do not tolerate discrimination at CLS. Potential, skills, desire and commitment are the criteria for advancement within the company, not gender. In addition, we have strong convictions that drive the way we work, for example, the conviction that the real added value in our company is that different ways of working or of dealing with issues is beneficial… men and women working together, the result can only be better!
You are often asked to talk about how space can help environmental protection? What do you think of the representation of women on expert panels?
Stéphanie Limouzin, Deputy Managing Director of Business Development at CLS: As a company specialized in the use of space data, we are indeed often called on to participate in roundtables dealing with the space industry. This is a still a predominantly male sector; too often I am the only woman at the roundtable. So there is still a long way to go. Statistics say that better female representation at professional events would encourage more women to opt for careers in high technology. That’s why I’m pushing the women at CLS to take action, to share our values outside our company.
Many managers at CLS are women, and I’m very proud of that! And I’d like to recognize them all today: Stéphanie Limouzin, Cécile Espinassous, Iva Colom Toro, Sophie Besnard, Nadia Maaref, Ariane Segonds, Sabine Caron, Catherine Boussarie, Marion Carrie, Louise Gardes, Isabelle Darnet, Julie Condamine, Stéphanie Dalmas, Amélie Proust, Stéphanie Campagnaro, Laurence Tallieu, Cathy Bissières, Laure Lussac, Elisabeth Lambert, Valerie Pont, Batoula Soussi, Stéphanie Guinehut, Claire Dufau, Laiba Amarouche, Sylvie Labroue, Annabelle Ollivier, Anne-Marie Breonce, Anne-Laure Pauzie, Suzanne Araujo, Nejma Sbaa, Laure Boutemy, Elsa Foster, Stéphanie Frayssines, Ingrid Giovannini, Marie-Noelle Loaec, Beatrice Nhun Fat. It’s a pleasure to work with them on a daily basis. They go straight to the point, they are direct, efficient, and relevant! They are examples that future young women can learn from. At CLS, regardless of a person’s role or level in the organization, there is gender equality and, as Cécile said, we manage on the basis of competence. The model to be followed and given is this: for equal skills and responsibilities, there should be equal pay, equal results, and equal rewards.