Case study

François Gabart, teamwork records


Shared by 
François Gabart
skipper & CEO MerConcept

François Gabart, renowned yacht racer and holder of the world record for the fastest solo circumnavigation of the globe, is passionate about teamwork. His offshore racing team, MerConcept, which employs around 80 people, has adopted Klaxoon to improve its efficiency.

MerConcept adopts Klaxoon to boost efficiency

Founded by François Gabart, MerConcept has established itself as one of the most innovative French companies in the field of offshore racing. Based in southern Finistère, France, it develops innovative, high-performance sporting projects like the MACIF Trimaran and the Imoca APIVIA, and constantly reinvents itself to stay at the cutting-edge of technology, to maintain its high standards and levels of excellence. To design the boats of tomorrow, François Gabart has surrounded himself with a variety of talent: skippers, technicians, engineers, architects, and project managers.

Beyond my work as a professional yacht racer, I'm an entrepreneur at heart and I very quickly became fascinated by Klaxoon's philosophy. They develop truly fantastic tools that enable better, more fluid communication within the team. With the start of certain new projects, we have gone from 15 to 80 employees in just a few months, and Klaxoon helps us pool our knowledge and retain a great team spirit. François Gabart

Cross-functional collaboration is at the heart of MerConcept's strategy

At MerConcept's premises in Port-La-Forêt, nearly 80 employees in three entities (design office, workshop and support) benefit from Klaxoon's tools and expertise. The aim is to support the teams in their innovation and research of the materials and technologies that will make the boats of tomorrow. To accelerate, the teams have access to the Klaxoon suite of collaborative tools and MeetingBoards (mobile touch screens) to facilitate exchanges between the various units, improve project management and encourage decision-making. Directly from the cockpit on board the trimaran, the skipper shares all the information related to their navigation and the actions to be taken: repairing a sail, molding a new part, etc.

Until now, each profession intervened one after the other. The transversal collaboration set up at MerConcept maximizes interactions throughout the project, from the first sketch of the boat to its operation. It's an approach that breaks down the silos by facilitating work between the different professions and teams. From workshop to workshop, the teams coordinate and share as much information as possible: on a daily basis during synchronization meetings, but also as each team makes progress. A vision defended by Thomas Normand, its general manager:

We have avoided developing in silos. Today, when our teams find good solutions, they must be able to share them internally right away. In the same way, when they encounter problems, they need to be able to find solutions, not just within their team, but across the whole group. Somebody inevitably has an answer somewhere at MerConcept, thanks to all the experience we all have accumulated.
From his boat, François Gabart uses Klaxoon's Board to share information with the workshop in real time.

Cross-team collaboration, even asynchronously

Split between the workshop, the design office, at sea, or distance working, MerConcept's employees often collaborate remotely. Klaxoon makes communication between teams more fluid and allows real-time synchronization.

Thanks to Klaxoon, skippers at sea and people in the workshop alike can share synchronized information that is useful for both parties. Like a job-list, for example. If I break something on my boat, I need to get the part made in the workshop – Klaxoon is there to connect these two worlds. Thomas Normand, Managing Director of MerConcept

In the workshop, the team on land receives this information, analyzes it in real time, and converts it into specific tasks in order to provide a rapid response. They publish progress reports in real time on the MeetingBoard, which is a veritable mobile workspace. Located in the center of the workshop and accessible to everyone, the MeetingBoard and the use of Board have made it possible to implement a visual management system.

Klaxoon is at the heart of team interactions. It facilitates meetings, action plans’ monitoring and flow mapping analysis. It is a major asset for industrial performance management.
At the heart of the production workshop, MerConcept's team can synchronize its work efficiently thanks to the Klaxoon's MeetingBoard and  Board.

Everyone has access to information in real time. Thanks to the use of Klaxoon tools such as Question or Memo, the team moves forward asynchronously to solve short and medium-term problems.

Cross-functional collaboration even with external parties

The role of the design office team is to design and monitor the construction of new boats. Project managers prepare their design brief, a sort of specifications sheet, in a Klaxoon Board. The image of the boat is placed at the center of the Board, where the team defines the scope of the project, specifies their questions and provides answers. This Board is their everyday working document, where all their discussions are held.

Online brainstorming by François Gabart on the Klaxoon's MeetingBoard.
We can also access external documents through it, with links to Excel or Word files, for example. We really have a summary of the project from A to Z. And above all, you have a very clear visual representation of where you're going, and why, for the current project. Matthieu Duchesne, Project manager

There are constant discussions between the design office and the workshop, as early as the design phase, to establish project feasibility. During execution, the Board is also at the center of the workshop to check the plans.

Regular synchronization for all teams

Previously, Thomas Normand would send everyone the agenda for their weekly Monday meeting, at the end of the day on Friday. With the Weekly template, the team sets up a Board to synchronize. Throughout the week, each member of the team sends their success stories and challenges for the week to come. Now, with Klaxoon, roles are reversed, and everyone takes ownership of this conversation and synchronization: "No more time is wasted gathering information. So much energy is saved for analyzing the situation and finding solutions."

Weekly team meetings.

Now, at Merconcept, from the design office to the entire production chain, the entire factory of this industrial leader uses Klaxoon on a daily basis to synchronize more efficiently. And François Gabart concludes:

Klaxoon helps us optimize how we work, share information efficiently, and facilitate teamwork, without wasting time. The aim is simply to boost our performance and, ultimately, build boats that win races.
The Macif Trimaran.

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