Dexterity | Hermès
WOMEN AND MEN
Dexterity, the trade secret of talent
Agile fingers dance with tools for cutting and table work in the leather workshops. Hermès welcomes diversity in backgrounds and ages. Here, dexterity, tested with the French Pôle emploi (Job Centre) prevails over initial training. This, along with respect for time, is the main secret of crafting objects.
A florist, a military parachutist, a hairdresser, a primary school teacher, a stone carver, a nursery assistant, a philosopher, a manager… this unlikely roll-call gives a glimpse of the atypical profiles that have enriched the leather métiers at Hermès in recent years. Practical tests have been introduced at a local level with Pôle emploi to open the métiers of cutting and table work to all candidates who want to work with their hands, regardless of identity, background or age. A person’s dexterity and ability to learn are what gives them their chance.
This method of recruitment by simulation (MRS) requires preliminary thought. Which skills are used and how? A pattern of essential know-how for Hermès in the relevant métiers has emerged from this reflection. Seven basic skills are measured over half a day. An aptitude for identifying and employing the natural faults in leather is tested in this way, as is the precision required for the art of creasing, an essential step in obtaining even edges on a bag. MRS, one of three or four stages of the selection process to join a Hermès leather workshop, highlights the saddler’s high standards and identifies future talent.
The golden filets of porcelain
Of all the arts involved in glazing ceramics, that of painting a band, or filet, onto a piece of porcelain is one of the most intricate. In the Hermès workshops in Nontron, the artisans must juggle between bowls, large vases, plates, dishes and tureens. Eight gold-filet workers maintain this know-how, decorating the pieces by hand using a liner brush saturated with gold, platinum or colour.
Footsteps across the world collection
Recognisable by their trademark white coats, which have earned them the nickname the Blouse Brothers, the Prudhomme brothers, Lionel and André, are supervisors at the Pantin leather workshop. But beyond their clothing, their skills honed by four decades with the house have given them the status of mentors, dispensing precious advice with a keen eye for the smallest detail. They pass on to their fellow leather craftsmen the secrets of flawless finishes and the requisites for a perfect bag.
Hermès employs 13,500 men and women, including 4,500 craftspeople, who form the first métier of the house. This land of hand changes and hires nonstop. To train, pass on, develop, ensure well-being, health and solidarity… Our ambition is to stimulate the personal growth of everyone involved.
Hermès endeavors to exalt, in twenty or so métiers, the most beautiful materials offered by nature. Our artisans’ skillful hands respect leather, silk, fabric, wood, crystal and precious metals. To preserve, optimize, revalue and draw… Our duty is to achieve the sustainable use of these resources.
Hermès owns 41 of its 52 manufactures in France and more than 300 stores around the world. Our proximity with suppliers, partners and territories is cultivated in the field. To fertilize, mesh, renovate and be committed… Our role, as an environment-friendly company, is to build sustainable ties.