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Decathlon – making inclusion more real.

Decathlon – making inclusion more real. 07-03-2024
Decathlon, the retail giant in the sports sector, present in 70 countries, is very attentive to issues of inclusion. With the aim of facilitating inclusion and training for people with Down Syndrome, it has developed the “My Personal Training” app, born and developed in Italy (where Decathlon is present with 136 stores and develops a turnover of 1.7 million €, of which 13.4% with online). It is the result of a journey started in 2017 to offer internships to sportsmen with cognitive disabilities.

The app allows a range of content (cards, videos, images) to be uploaded and shared on the company’s smartphone to transfer information as clearly and easily as possible. The goal is to create a platform to integrate activities, job descriptions to be carried out, daily work, etc.: all information that can be drawn on independently without having to resort to the help of a colleague.

Why is it innovative?

• Inclusive layout
Responds to a specific need, starting with daily activities: what to do, when to do it and for how long. This facilitates greater autonomy on the part of trainees.

• Sharing of different materials
Video tutorials, information sheets, a calendar of activities with accompanying alarms, and functions to help scan time and tasks (such as how to greet a customer, how to place a swimsuit on the hanger, how to fold an item of clothing, etc.)

Section on ‘difficult’ words
Acronyms and typical ‘decathlete’ expressions that are not found in everyday vocabulary.

Stimulates a growth project
Helps all employees work together and fosters synergy in teams.

Facilitates the inclusion of all people
The App has been so successful that it is also used not only by people with cognitive disabilities but also by the able-bodied, helping to engage and empower all employees.

Our expert opinion

The app developed by Decathlon integrated innovative aspects both from the point of view of social sustainability by offering an opportunity for work and growth to people with disabilities (physical and cognitive) and for its tech content. The choice was to involve these employees not for warehouse work, but for in-store activities with direct contact with customers (today it has 42 employees with Trisomy 21 in Italy), a choice that testifies to the implementation of the values that Decathlon has long carried forward. In addition, the training modules in the app are simple and clear, which is suitable for able-bodied employees as well. In an increasingly complex world of work, in which aspects are taken for granted and training is carried out in a hasty and ineffective way, the universal and inclusive design approach proves to be successful.

Find out more about this positive impact initiative in the "Retail Innovations 18" report, prepared by KISS Retail and Ebeltoft Group, downloadable in full here: