Simplification is Our Innovation

Increasing Accessibility for the Visually Impaired with Explorers Project

October 2023

At Radiall, encouraging our employees’ growth is part of the empowerment initiative of our purpose. Growing your professional skills can include the opportunity to explore new ideas and develop projects you’re passionate about. That’s why we launched the Explorers program, an intrapreneurship program at our French facilities that gave 10 employees the chance to explore ideas and projects about six innovation topics.

Radiall Employee Team Accelerates Project in Intrapreneurship Program

In January, we introduced this program and shared two of the projects related to talent development and environmental protection. In the spring, we shared a project aimed at increasing building energy efficiency. Now, we are sharing a project that looks to offer a solution for visually impaired people that ensures they can travel independently, thanks to the referencing of public outlets and a support community.

Creating a Smart Outlet

Céline Castan and Romain Giroud from Radiall Chateau Renault proposed the idea to develop a smart outlet that could allow visually impaired people to easily connect a device. With support from sponsor Pierre Bigot, the team created the Eye-Plug project.

Around the world, at least 2.2 billion people have a vision impairment, with 43 million of those living with total blindness. Visually impaired people face a challenge and limitation on their self-sufficiency when they try to connect a device to an outlet in an unfamiliar place. This project would allow people to quickly and easily locate an outlet in a public space (like an airport or train station) so they can be as self-sufficient as possible. 

On a personal level, Céline’s daughter is blind. When she realized that a simple everyday task like locating an electrical outlet was going to be complicated for her, she decided to use Radiall’s purpose of “creating connections that matter” to find a solution. 

“This brings a societal side that we don't necessarily have in our profession,” said Romain. “We are touching on an important subject and we want to do our little bit to promote the inclusion of people with disabilities.”

The team proposed a design that includes an app to help visually impaired people locate connected outlets that are installed in train stations, malls and other public places, which will improve accessibility for visually impaired people when they travel. 

“We followed the path of any start-up in full creation,” Romain said. “We put together our business plan with a business model that seems valid to us based on the market research that we conducted. At the end of the acceleration phase, we produced a prototype which can be used to test our solution in the field, both with possible users of the solution such as the visually impaired and also with our target audience (i.e. customers, hotels or companies). Our financial projection over the next five years is optimistic and suggests that there may be good prospects for this solution on the market.”

At Radiall, we’re proud of our employees’ skills and ideas throughout the company. If you are looking for a new career opportunity where you can challenge yourself and work on products that impact the world, check out our current job openings.