11/02/2021 - Careers[Women in [email protected]]
Hélène, can you tell us more about your early days at Vallourec?At VRCF, I was in charge of steel developments aiming at improving quality performance. Combining theoretical knowledge with experience in the field is key to broadening your range of skills. The job offered me this possibility. In addition to that, six months after my arrival, I was asked to lead a team of R&D technicians which progressively grew, and included engineers and PhDs in metallurgy. I thus jumped straight into a management role.
What about your mission at Vallourec today?Since 2014, my mission has been to develop a global vision of our quality performance with steel suppliers (mainly our long-term partner HKM*). We wanted a change in approach, with a view to significantly improve our performance, in particular on non-quality costs. This new position was created in this context.
It is quite challenging to change existing models. It has to make sense for all parties to take them on board. We identified levers common to several tube mills or products, looked for synergies and focused on subjects having significant benefits for customers or costs. With a multi-disciplinary team combining the skills of all actors involved, we were able to design a concrete action plan.Hélène Dalmont Prematerial and Quality Control Manager at Vallourec Tubes France
Changing a long existing model inevitably meets with some reluctance. What were the main difficulties to overcome?The main challenge has been to gain the trust of all parties in order to work seamlessly and fairly, in everyone's interest, and to achieve a true partnership-based relationship.
How did you overcome these difficulties?It was part of the job to listen to all parties and explain what was at stake, which products or orders were critical, and to make everyone understand the items that needed to be safeguarded. In terms of problem-solving, it was also important to use the right approach and methodology such as DMAIC and 6 Sigma**, as well as our metallurgical expertise.
What do you like most about Vallourec?I owe a lot to Vallourec. I have had the opportunity to improve my technical and managerial skills. I appreciate the values and the very supportive management that helps people progress even in difficult times.