The plan is being driven "by continuing client pressure to reduce agency compensation while demanding increased service, as well as declining ad revenues due to recession, exacerbated by the loi Sapin," said Jean-Pierre Villaret, chairman of Y&R France. Loi sapin is the recently passed legislation ordering transparency in media buying, which will have a detrimental impact on media buying revenues at French agencies and buying services.
To enhance client relationships, Y&R's account executives will be encouraged to reduce the time they spend at the agency and spend more time with clients. Y&R will provide them with laptops, which will permit them to instantly access information at the agency and stay in touch. In virtually all cases, the number of account people interacting with a client will be reduced to one heavyweight team leader as well as one person charged with implementation, "to end inefficient gang meetings where nothing gets done," Villaret said. In theory, this could change the function of the office environment to more of a rendezvous point and could have positive consequences on overhead costs.
Asking employees to work at home stems from a belief that the best ideas in advertising aren't "born in a distracted office environment on in committee, but during quiet thinking time," Villaret said. Changes in other departments, such as planning and buying, are in development.
Copyright Adweek L.P. (1993)