Why and how to sell to CSEs (Social and Economic Committees)?

by Elliot Infelta on Nov 16, 2021

Since January 2020, you have become familiar with the term CSE or Social and Economic Committee which replaces the old sign Works councils in other words the THIS that we have known so far. Rest assured, the objective of the two bodies remains unchanged and focuses on representing the interests of the company's staff.

Keep in mind that this system aims to simplify the representation of employees and staff to their employers by centralizing the issues and the defense of the rights claimed by these same employees. This instance is mandatory for any company with at least 11 employees. It is then that these same employees will be able to elect representatives so that they can defend the rights of staff at work (Health, Safety and Working Conditions), just like Works councils.

This therefore constitutes a guarantee of safety for the staff of a company, who will be able to freely consult and benefit from the advice of CSE / Works councils on various professional issues.

We therefore estimate that the CSE/Works councils (between 1 and 49 employees) will be able to act on these areas:

  • The application of labor law and collective agreements and agreements
  • Questions surrounding health, safety and good working conditions, in connection with mandatory training for the staff
  • The possibility of carrying out investigations concerning work accidents or occupational illnesses of staff
  • The ability to grasp labor inspection Staff

Concerning companies with more than 49 employees, CSE will be required to consult different areas:

  • Strategic directions of the company
  • Economic and financial situations of the company
  • Overall organization of the company
  • Social and employment policies
  • Participation in the company's boards of directors/supervisory boards

In short, as you will surely have understood, the aim of creating Economic Social Committees is primarily to improve your well-being at work (holidays, meal vouchers, preferential rates, etc.) but allows you to ensure a minimum of protection as company personnel.

After you have an overall idea of ​​what a Social Economic Committee can be, you can ask yourself how this body could allow you to reach new customers for your company's activity.

It's very simple, imagine that you are more and more professionals selling your products/services to CSEs, but what are the motivations?

Why sell to Social and Economic Committees

According to your testimonies, many of you have decided to take the plunge and market your products through a B2B channel to this so-called “individual” clientele, for financial and reliability reasons.

By this, we express the idea that CSEs, for many of you, are a very important source of commercial development despite everything (B2B channel brings more growth than before). By entering via the CSE/Works Councils for example, you benefit from better visibility, because the CSE will communicate your offer to hundreds of employees and their entourages.

With more than 40,000 CSEs present in France and more than 11 million employees (nearly one in two workers). Keep in mind that the influence of CSEs is not negligible and can represent up to 10 – 20 thousand potential customers for the largest CSEs, in addition to their families and former employees who currently represent today 25 million “rights holders” and therefore potential customers for your activity.

So you understand that these thousands of Social and Economic Committees are allocated a substantial budget in order to be able to meet the needs of these millions of employees, so it's up to you to do well and slip into their client portfolio, right?

Of course, this is not an easy task and you will need good preparation such as, for example, making an attractive offer, clear and concise communication and other elements. Because depending on the CSEs you want to target, they devote more or less a budget to the discount made to their employees or not at all. In addition, they only communicate your offer which must be more attractive than that of your competitors.

Keep in mind that relationships with CSEs can now be more complex for different reasons:

  • They manage a lot of offers so cannot always give you time.
  • They are in high demand and therefore difficult to reach.
  • They have limited staff and turnover is essential.
  • Covid no longer allows you to meet them at CSE fairs or in their offices.
  • It is no longer possible to present these products directly in companies or trade fairs.
  • We must be able to give them a turnkey offer that is easy to communicate.

How to sell to Social and Economic Committees?

In case you would like to sell your products/services to CSEs, we will give you some solutions so that you are successful.

Classic contact

You can proceed this way:

By distributing your offer in the form of brochures and flyers directly in CSE exhibitions. You can go to companies directly after invitation by the CSE with a stand, the company may like it because it creates a free event for them and shows that the CSE is active for the employees. 

Another possibility is direct mailing by email (e-mailing campaigns) or letters with brochures of your company's activity. This communication action must be carried out with a reliable database which can be obtained from players like Kompass to name just one.

These solutions can be complicated in terms of feedback and management for all parties (CSE as well as for you), especially when we learn that the CSE are no longer very interested in this type of system which they find very impractical and do not address their real concerns.

IT solutions to overcome this:

In the case where the CSE has its own site in the form of a marketplace for example, you can easily reference your products by sending the information formatted according to the site; for the CSE, turnkey marketplace solutions exist.

In order to simplify this process and improve your B2B performance, at Huggii, it is entirely possible to develop this solution with different parameters which can be made according to the CSE and its needs.

If the order must be placed on your site with price discounts or not, several possibilities exist:

  • The CSE manager places a group order for all employees
  • Each employee creates an account on your site with a specific company – CSE code to be able to access specific prices but also the possibility of specific delivery such as being delivered directly to the CSE or relay point

For example, you can, with a specific site for sales to CSEs, allow your CSE customers, depending on their organization, to collect their needs through your site and deliver the Social and Economic Committee in one go or deliver directly to each employee's home. .

Without forgetting the possibility of making specific discounts if the CSE wants to communicate about a gift “Your CSE offers you €30 on your order with no minimum purchase”

In order to simplify this process for you, e-commerce solutions exist such as at Huggii; it is entirely possible to develop this solution with different parameters which can be done according to the CSE and its needs.

By digitalizing your offer to CSEs and using the right tools, you will be able to save time in your commercial management, reach more employees, make your products known and thus develop your sales easily and quickly and no longer only during given periods, but all throughout the year.