Excellence System

The Excellence System has a single ultimate goal: to achieve the best performance in safety, security, quality, cost and lead time, for customers, for the company and for all employees. Studies show performance gaps of more than 30% between companies that have an Excellence System embodied and practised by their managers and those that do not. Thus, Orano decided to make Operational Excellence one of its three priorities, by developing a System inspired by both the best practices on the market and its existing mechanisms. In accordance with the Company's exemplarity value, it is Management that is driving deployment.

A system serving excellence management

Rooted in Orano's values and serving the Company's vision, the Excellence System brings together all management methods, behaviours, principles and practices to serve a dynamic of continuous improvement:

  • a management cycle that champions excellence in all areas of the company: strategic, financial, operational, and managerial;
  • a management mode rooted in strong field presence, coaching, team support and individual responsibility, based on the inverted pyramid principle;
  • a spirit of continuous progression around a way of thinking: Plan, Do, Check, Act;
  • basic tools:
    • visual management and visual performance management,
    • standards and standards management,
    • the 5S method,
    • problem-solving (A3),
    • waste reduction,
    • practices for Fiabilisation of Interventions (PFI).
  • a shared language.
© Dixxit/Orano

Excellence fundamentals

The Manager's responsibilities

The manager's first responsibility is to achieve results in an efficient and sustainable manner. Like other "excellent" companies, Orano naturally relies on its managerial line to deploy its agenda, clearly stating the expected "Operational Excellence behaviours", which will make it possible to deliver, over time, all the promises of the Operational Excellence system.

Managerial behaviours

Managers are the first to relay exemplary behaviours. This means that they embody and put into practice, seen by their teams, the Operational Excellence behaviours expected within the company.

The manager in the field
This is a managerial approach in which the manager gives priority to the field environment: the factory, team members’ offices, project platforms, etc. The manager observes the reality and standards applied, picks up on and prevents deviations from expected standards, identifies waste and understands the entire value chain from end to end. Through this approach, the manager is able to play an enhanced coaching part, by encouraging proactive attitudes and showing recognition to the teams. This approach then opens onto the Practices for Fiabilisation of Interventions (PFI).

The Coaching attitude
The managerial behaviours that stem from Operational Excellence can be summarised into 10 concrete and measurable actions. It is through them that one essential principle -- the manager's coaching attitude -- comes into practice.

excellence operationnelle systeme comportement maganeriaux

The spirit of continuing improvement

PDCA – Plan, Do, Check, Act – is first and foremost a way of thinking, used in particular during problem-solving. The method is divided into 4 stages, each leading to the next, and is aimed at building a virtuous circle.

  • PLAN : “I give meaning to hat I do” = preparing, understanding, anticipating and planning
  • DO : “I do” = implementing
  • CHECK : “I make sure that what I do has a positive impact” = measuring, recording, verifying
  • ACT : “I take what works and make it a lasting part of a process” = anchoring, responding, standardising and capitalising

The foundational tools in Excellence

Visual management

This concept is based on the understanding that making the company visual in its entirety (process, state, instructions, etc.) makes it easier for teams to come on-board. It consists of visual cues and displays accessible to all.

Visual Performance Management

While visual management is used on a daily basis and in all activities, Visual Performance Management (VPM) is focused on objectives and indicators (KPI):
  • monitoring performance through indicators and objectives to be achieved,
  • collectively understanding the causes of non-performance,
  • addressing the causes of non-performance at source,
  • valuing employees' ideas and proposals,
  • managing different time horizons,
  • better communicating the issues at stake in performance by depicting objectives visually.

“Visual management contributes to building a true performance culture by uniting all the players”

The standard

The standard defines the best, easiest, safest way to perform a task at a given point in time. It must be simple, clear, obvious and repeatable to facilitate its application. It is formally stated by the person doing. It is part of a standard cycle:
  • stabilising know-how in order to see the opportunities for improvement,
  • gradually making action part of a continuing improvement dynamic,
  • taking action that breaks with the past: radically changing the product or process.
    Standard management is the foundation for performance improvement because it aims both to comply with the standard and to improve it.

“Where this is no standard, there can be no improvement” - T. Ohno


5S is a method for organizing a work environment so that it is safe and efficient. It includes:

  • safety and security (incident/accident occurrence),
  • quality (non-quality/delays caused),
  • the client & the authorities (attractiveness/trust),
  • working conditions (comfort/motivation/pride/ownership),
  • deadlines (execution time/delivery time/responsiveness),
  • resource utilization (productivity/equipment performance/surface area occupied).

Waste reduction

Hunting down waste means eliminating sources of non-performance on the value flow for the customer. This approach applies in production but also in all the company's other functions. A period of extended data collection and observation in the field is needed to detect waste.


Out of all the problem-solving methods on the market, the A3 method has been chosen and put into practice at Orano. It consists of: a clear presentation of a problem, analysis thereof, and solutions implemented, understandable not only by the interested parties but also by all those who are not specialists in the issue.


Practice of Fiabilisation of Interventions (PFI)

The human factor, always part of operations, must be taken into account from the point at which processes are elaborated up to their implementation on the ground. To prevent the errors that give rise to quality issues, 6 PFIs are used to help optimize process reliability. Their aims are:

  • To design error-tolerant systems that best integrate operating procedures, and the strengths and weaknesses of individuals;
  • To ensure that the changes made do not impact the ability of individuals to work reliably;
  • To ensure that the organization and the resources available help make human activity more reliable;
  • To develop reliable practices, a culture in which everyone knows and recognizes their limits;
  • To understand in depth the reasons for failures as well as for successes.

excellence operationnelle systeme pratiques
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