Charlotte, Karin and Yves share their story
Click to read the interview
“I really feel part of this company”
Charlotte Op de Beeck is Development Operations Officer and works at Galapagos for about six months. Although the job is pretty demanding, there are no bumps in the road. And you can take that literally.
Are the order numbers correct? Are the invoices under budget? Does everyone have access to the right computer programs? Charlotte will run your administration smoothly. “I’ve already learnt such an enormous amount here,” says Charlotte. “Not just about my job, but also about the company.”
I am a wheelchair user and I’ve been pleasantly surprised by what they do for me at Galapagos
For Charlotte, it’s enormously important that she feels comfortable in an organization. “I am a wheelchair user and I’ve been pleasantly surprised by what they do for me at Galapagos. Before I started here, a future colleague took me for a quick tour to check whether everything was wheelchair friendly. At my interview, there was a little sill difficult for me to get over with my wheelchair. On my first day of work, that threshold was gone and I could smoothly come and go.”
Charlotte works on the eighth floor. Especially for her, Galapagos has purchased an evacuation chair that will safely bring her downstairs in the event of a fire. “I have already worked in a number of companies, but this is the first time that I’ve come across something like this. There are times I feel a bit shy about it all. But of course, it sets me at ease that everybody is looking after me so well. It means I can take part in everything. I feel I am truly part of the company. That helps me to grow and go through life more independently.”
“Team building combined with a good cause hits the bullseye”
For the first time, the Galapagos Company Day in 2018 was dedicated to a good cause. The annual team-building event focused not just on the employees, but also benefited organizations where help is always welcome.
Every Galapagos site supported a local organization of its own choosing. In Mechelen, Galapagos worked with Sjarabang, a creative atelier where people with intellectual or multiple disabilities work with art, theatre and music. An artist designed a polyester mould in the form of a fish that Galapagos employees decorated to create a beautiful piece of artwork. Team building in the form of art!
“This assignment took our scientists outside their comfort zone,” says Management Assistant Karin Geerts, who was responsible for organizing the day in Mechelen. “Luckily, the members of Sjarabang were there to teach us artistic techniques and guide us.”
The enthusiasm and the warmth during the Company Day were unforgettable. It made me realize once again that I had come to the right company
Karin was as impressed by how focused everybody was on the job, as well as the variety of creations. The artworks were finally auctioned during the De Warmste Week, a Belgian event that raises funds for charity, with the proceeds going to Sjarabang. “For me, it’s important that as a company, we leave our ivory towers and meet people who might not have things quite so easy. The enthusiasm and the warmth during the Company Day were unforgettable. It made me realize once again that I had come to the right company.”
“Making a difference, one day at a time”
Yves Galimidi is responsible for procuring a range of corporate services and products, ranging from electricity to company cars. In every aspect of his work, he thinks about a bright, clean and green future.
“I’ll give you an example of how we have gone green. Our electricity provider offered two options: normal electricity and sustainably sourced electricity. It’s my job to screen options and analyze figures so we can make the right decision. In this case, despite the slightly higher cost, management agreed to opt for an environmentally friendly option. In Mechelen, we are now powered entirely by electricity from renewable sources.”
Driven to lower CO2
“We are working on a project for our fleet of company cars, and are including hybrids and electric cars. The average CO2 emissions for every car in our fleet will drop from 118 g/km to 99 g/km between 2018 and 2020.”
“Of course, there’s no point in travelling when it isn’t necessary. We are in the age of video conferencing and Skype calls are a click away. Working this way is very efficient. It slashes our ecological footprint.”
Proud to be green
“Galapagos is very much aware of environmentally friendly solutions that are better for the environment. Thanks to the choices we make, we are making a difference. One day at a time.”