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Ares - France

Developing a safety program at Ares, a job placement organization in France

The Air Liquide Foundation is supporting Ares in their work to improve workplace safety, aiming for Zero Workplace Accidents for 2022. As the leading job placement organization in the Ile de France region, Ares helps marginalized populations - young people without diplomas, refugees, people with disabilities - find stable employment. The company is active in many fields: logistics, construction, the circular economy, digital services, etc. and has been growing rapidly over the past few years, serving over 1,200 people in 2019. The safety program that Ares is developing will serve as the model for other job placement organizations who wish to make safety a key component of job training.

Project Identity

Project Initiator: Ares Association Year(s) of support: 2020-2023
Support provided: Establishing a Zero Workplace Accidents program by 2022 (prevention, training, online platform to monitor implementation and preventive measures) Amount provided: 225,000 euros
Location: Ile-de-France, France

Air Liquide  Monitoring managers:  Joël André as part of a Senior skills donation program

 Claire Leveque, Vice President SIS - Head Office


The Cause: Workplace Safety

The leadership team for the Ares job placement organization adopted the “Zero Accident” goal as part of their three-year strategic plan. They had noticed that accidents were too common and wished to quickly address this issue. 

The causes come down to several factors:

  • The populations Ares works with have no experience with a safety culture, and it has been difficult to share safety knowledge internally
  • The entry-level jobs that are the organization's main focus are particularly prone to physical accidents, in the fields of construction or logistics, for instance
  • There is little or no capitalization on the institutional safety knowledge of employees given the short placements (between 12 and 18 months)

The 2020-2023 Zero Accident Program: a cultural shift in a growing community

The Zero Workplace Accident 2020-2023 program has been rolled out at 15 Ares job placement facilities. The goals of the Zero Accident program are:

  • Develop a safety culture
  • Institute the program in all placement facilities in France: action plan and tools developed using open access methods
  • Improve the employability of job placement employees

In three years we aim to go from a place where safety rules are nonexistent or largely ignored, to “I’m doing this because it’s the rule”, then to “I’m doing this because it’s good for me”, and finally reach “I take pride in helping others improve their safety performance”.

© Thibaut DELIGEY Autan Blanc 

The Work

Ares identified three priorities for their action plan:

Creating a Health and Safety database

  • Writing a guide for the teams that manage and support operational workers
  • Implementing a risk prevention approach by creating reference materials that the operational teams can easily understand and access
  • Managing and measuring the performance of the prevention system by creating indicators and setting up a team


Facilitating prevention on the ground

  • Developing prevention on the ground: training in implementation techniques, monitoring actions, and mobilizing dedicated internal resources in order to protect employees from accidents, musculoskeletal disorders, and occupational disorders
  • Improving onboarding and training in safety practices for employees in job placement


Measuring and monitoring the performance of the safety management system

  • Tracking actions and performance indicators for continuous improvement
  • Sharing results to expand the project


The program is benefitting from the expertise of an Air Liquide group employee, a former site director and director of safety for industrial activities at the Air Liquide Group in France. He is now donating his expertise full-time.


"After working for Air Liquide for thirty years, I wanted to work on a social project in a professional capacity. The Air Liquide group offered me a senior skills-based sponsorship mission at Ares, an organization supported by the Air Liquide Foundation. Ares is the first group for professional integration in France for people facing social exclusion. I am seconded on a full-time basis for an 18-month assignment at Ares, where I am building a strong safety culture within the organization modelled after the Air Liquide “Zero Accident Goal” program. What made me even more excited about the project was the opportunity to meet people who have faced difficulties in their lives and contribute to their professional integration: formerly incarcerated or homeless individuals, people struggling with addiction and more. Through Ares support, nearly two-thirds of the people it accompanies are able to find long-term stable employment. For me this is an incredibly rewarding interpersonal experience. It is something that motivates me in my daily life: sharing my expertise and helping change people’s lives for good."

Joël André, Air Liquide employee on temporary assignment at ARES (2020-2021)

1,100 Employees in job placement

66% success rate

fields supported in 2019: 5 Logistics, construction, circular economy, sorting, digital services

15 Job placement facilities

26,000+ Training hours per years

250+ partner companies

What the Air Liquide Foundation is doing

The Air Liquide Foundation made the Zero Workplace Accident by 2022 program possible: jobs for prevention specialists, training, and the online platform for tracking implementation and prevention measures. Ares also has support from an Air Liquide Group employee, a former site director and director of safety for industrial activities at the Air Liquide Group in France. He is now donating his expertise full-time.