According to trade union representatives, the possibilities for continuing or resuming the Océ Software Laboratories (OSL) in Gembloux are very weak.
Therefore, 49 highly qualified employees speak to candidates for employers. The OSL company based in Crealys Science Park is owned by the Dutch company Océ, specializing in printing and copying, belonging to the Canon group. At the beginning of September, the shareholders expressed their intention to end their operations by the end of the year and move to Romania. The Renault procedure has started, everything is being considered to develop solutions.
After the company's second council was held last week, a meeting with the Walloon Society for Management and Investment (Sogepa) took place on Tuesday.
"The goal was to see if it was possible to recover our business as a whole," said Etienne Goublomme, a representative of the CNE association. "Unfortunately, because our only customer is Océ and we're only working on one product, it's very complicated. Recovery from a company operating in the same sector may have been possible, but they are usually in a difficult situation and have already been transferred. "
"Currently, the path we are working on is rather individual employee recovery by companies in cross-cutting areas that would need a highly qualified workforce," added the union leader. "Sogepa will do it, but we also appeal to all companies that could apply for office."
OSL employees are trained in IT, administration, accounting and human resource management, half of which have a master's degree and the other a bachelor's degree. On average, they have 50 years and 30 years of service and should be released from the contract at the end of December. Candidates for employers can apply through trade unions.
However, the continuation of OSL by Océ after December seems still very much at risk. "We still have to raise some problems, but Océ has been losing money for a few years, and now Canon wants this branch to be profitable," said CNE Gembloux delegate. "It's hard to accept that our work is going to Romania, but Océ doesn't seem to be able to back down."
"In the meantime, we decided not to strike and respect our contracts, but whatever happens, we want to remain professionals until the end, and this is also the message we want to convey Potential future employers Yes, highly qualified employees with seniority, such as ours, may be more expensive on on paper, but it is also a guarantee of a job well done. Some will be willing to make concessions to what is offered to them – he concluded.