Corporate sports mission: the role of the CSE

Reading time: 4 minutes
  •   So this is it! This year, we're doing it!
  •   What's next?
  •   We're going to offer physical and sports activities to our employees
  • Oh yeah, great idea, corporate sports ! It's good for your health, and we're going to be a big hit on the QHCT and CSR fronts.
  •   There you have it. So we're agreed, you prepare this for me.
  •   Uh, me? But how does it work?
  •   But old chap, find out... Check with the CSE!

If you want your employees to benefit from sports activities within the company, there are rules to be observed. And the heart of the decision lies with the Works Council.

For some, this can seem like an obstacle. But there's nothing complicated about it, as you'll see. Let's get down to business...

The role of the CSE: a reminder

A new and unique "employee representation body" within the company, the Social and Economic Committee (CSE ) carries on the work of the previous bodies : CE, DP and CHSCT. It is mandatory in companies with more than 11 employees. Its members are elected by these same employees for a term of between 2 and 4 years. Depending on the size of the company, the CSE's powers and budget may vary.

The goal?

Improve working conditions (well-being, health and safety) while acting as a democratic channel for employee expression.

What are its missions?

"Present the employer with individual or collective complaints concerning :

- Salaries

- Application of the Labor Code and other legal provisions concerning social protection in particular

- Conventions and agreements applicable in the company

The CSE delegation helps to promote health, safety and working conditions within the company. It conducts investigations into accidents at work and occupational or work-related illnesses.

In this context, the CSE is involved in social and cultural activities... and physical and sports activities (APS).

The CSE, at the heart of company sport

Promoting a culture of health and well-being

Beneficial effects on diabetes, obesity, mental and psychological disorders, etc. The positive effects of sport on health are numerous and well recognized.

Unsurprisingly, physical activity and sport have become a health/well-being issue for companies. Here are some interesting impacts observed on employees when they have regular physical activity: reduction in absenteeism, reduction of sick leave, better productivity, reduction of stress, strengthened team cohesion , etc.

It's easy to see why governments and companies alike encourage physical activity and sport(PSA) in various forms. It's also an excellent way of achieving QHCT and CSR objectives. And what could be safer for the employer than to offer the possibility of practising PSA within the company itself?

It is the role of the CSE to encourage and offer sporting activities to employees. According to the French Labor Code: "The social and economic committee ensures or supervises the management of physical or sporting activities and may decide to participate in their financing" (Labor Code, art. L.2312-80).

For example, it is up to the CSE to finance them from its own budget dedicated to social and cultural activities (ASC). The CSE benefits from exemptions from social security contributions for its social and cultural activities.

To achieve this, the company must meet the following conditions:

- The equipment must be accessible to all employees, regardless of the nature or duration of their employment contracts.

All employees must have access to all information concerning the organization of the services provided.

Note: if the company has fewer than 50 employees, management is shared between the members of the CSE and the employer (and if the company has no CSE, it is the employer's responsibility).

Under certain conditions, the CSE can also delegate its prerogatives to an association or to the employer.

(To find out more, read our page on " Sport in the workplace: what does the law say?)

What can we do?

First of all, it must be said that the practice of sports in the workplace is optional and can only be carried out on a voluntary basis. No employee may be forced to take part in any PSA organized by the company.

Before deciding which options are best for the company, it's a good idea to ask employees directly about their wishes and expectations... A quick survey can help avoid disappointment.

Here is a non-exhaustive list of possible choices:

1. Reimbursement of, or contribution to, registration fees for sports activities and licenses for employees and their families who participate in clubs or associations. (Subject to presentation of an invoice in the employee's name) This also includes offering a digital sports subscription via dedicated applications. (You've probably heard of such an app, follow my lead...)

2. Obtain advantageous rates for one or more gyms close to the company.

3. Set up a company sports area. The CSE can even authorize the creation of a company sports association. Under certain conditions, group classes can be held in specially designated areas, with qualified outside instructors. (Please note that the CSE must take out multi-activity insurance).

4. Organization of and participation in sports outings or inter-company tournaments.  

What's up? Not so complicated, is it?

This little reminder shows just how central the CSE is to the introduction of PSAs in the company. All you have to do is launch the initiative, and the procedure is set in motion.

It's up to you to choose one or more of the possible offers and actions.

Of course, we'll be happy to answer any questions you may have about your plans to promote sports activities in your company.

See you soon for further explanations...

By Edmond Kean

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