An interview with Matteo Massagli, Head of Plant Operations in Italy for Ingenico Group in the context of the COVID-19 outbreak.
1) What is your previous work experience and how did it lead to your appointment at Ingenico?
Before joining Ingenico, I spent 5 years in the English multinational Spirax Sarco, initially as Material Manager and then as Supply Chain Manager of the two Italian sites. In my previous roles, I worked in international companies (such as CargoClay, Ing. Enea Mattei and Cameron) where I acquired excellent skills in managing, redesign-to-efficiency of logistics flows, purchasing and planning departments, as well as skills on cost reduction, lean management, visual management and KPIs implementation.
2) Can you describe the range and scale of services carried out in the Cernusco site?
The operational centre of Cernusco sul Naviglio is fascinating. It is an ecosystem where numerous people of various backgrounds collaborate, all aiming at satisfying our customers without ever losing sight of people, the true engine of the company.
Being one of the two EMEA centres, we not only focus on Italy, but we also work for other countries. Indeed, over the years, the Italian Cernusco Centre has become the key Operations plant in Eastern Europe and Africa, supplying Ingenico subsidiaries operating in those territories with warehouse services, preparation of payment terminals and delivery, as well as repair services for the west Europe. Clearly in such an international context there are a lot of variables, each nation and customer have their own needs and ask to be followed in the best way. The distance between countries has never been a problem, thanks to the perfect collaboration between colleagues.
The Cernusco site includes a large warehouse of over 5,000 square meters where specialised technicians’ teams are dedicated to reception, customisation, maintenance and after-sales management of our payment terminals. These terminals are customised in accordance to customer needs, injected with secure keys in our PCI certified Secure Room, and then shipped to Italy and Europe.
To provide "in field" services, we cooperate with a series of technical partners distributed throughout the country, allowing us to reach and manage 100% of the Italian territory.
I am very proud and honoured of my new role in the key Cernusco site and I feel even more responsible given the historical moment we are facing. My main focus will be to ensure the safety and health of all Ingenico’s employees in this period; it is my number one priority.
On the longer term, a key focus will certainly be to develop even further the efficiency of the logistics and purchasing departments, in addition to planning and strengthening relationships with EMEA Ingenico’s team, to spread the high level of know-how we acquired in 20 years of specialised activity in the management and maintenance of POS networks.
Synergies with the Group’s HQ will also be a key objective for us: leading the team in the right direction, creating the right connections between local and international company skills, and answering the needs of Ingenico customers throughout EMEA.
Developing and sharing my expertise with all my collaborators will be my commitment to contribute to the company’s vision and objectives. All this, starting from people, developing the skills and giving our talent the opportunity to express themselves, enhancing the structure of Cernusco within the Group and bringing out the professionalism of my collaborators and colleagues who commit themselves every day to the service of the company and our customers.
3) How are you dealing with the COVID-19 current situation?
We are facing a critical and exceptional period. Ingenico places the utmost importance on the safety of its employees, customers and partners. Therefore, we have implemented strict measures to protect our employees and customers, while guaranteeing a business continuity plan. These measures have been implemented in accordance at every stage of Italian government instruction.
Our manufacturing plant is already working under restrict preventive measures and is running as usual. Key measures include:
- Working from home, for employees whose activities allow them to do so;
- Strengthened preventive measures and minimised face-to-face-contacts with staff and third-parties;
- All operations sites equipped with disinfectant gel in all employees are invited to use gloves and masks, guaranteeing safety distances;
- POS cleaning instructions provided to our customers.
We are partners working for companies deemed "necessary" in such a delicate phase. Indeed, dealing with 360° payment systems, we are called to ensure continuity for the entire chain of essential activities and, above all, guaranteeing our customers our maintenance services on payment systems installed in all the shops and business activities which are allowed to be open in this period. Our services are carried out in full compliance with the safety standards to protect either staff and customers.
We received thank you letters from our main customers, and we are glad that, at our modest level, we can contribute to the economy in these difficult times.
The Group also recognises the effort and speed of adaptation, especially in Cernusco’s team, whose continuity is a key asset for the whole EMEA area.
4) How are you specifically addressing the Operations services, following the restrictions imposed in Italy?
As stated above, Ingenico Italia is taking strict measures to protect both collaborators and partners, and to be able to guarantee business continuity, in compliance with quality and safety standards fully aligned with the directives of the Italian Government and with the WHO (World Health Organisation) recommendations.
Ingenico’s Cernusco’s operation center is ISO22301 certified, an international reference standard relating to the management of business continuity. The site has been open since the beginning of the restricted period. We have analysed all our processes, adapting them to the required safety standards and carefully applying the Directives of the Government. It’s not an easy job due to the size of the site and the number of people working there, but the team has always done its best. And surely, we will value this whole experience in our future.
Among the main actions undertaken in Italy, for example, speaking about the Call Center and the Technical Help Desk, we have equipped all our operators with the necessary tools to be able to work in remote-working, in order to protect their health, but to ensure the regularity of the services.
All office staff were also placed in remote-working.
For the Cernusco plant, where the repair and customisation activities continue, we divided people into two shifts never crossing, with control of the body temperature, creation of obligatory routes, total sanitation of the site between one shift and the next. We have equipped all rooms with disinfectant gel and invited employees to use gloves and masks.
We’ve had to organise ourselves in a different way, with a better distribution of our technical partners throughout the country, in order to always guarantee the on-site services. We will keep the momentum to address this challenge as long as the situation requires this effort from us, while always ensuring a high level of service to our clients and partners.
I take pride in the commitment of all Ingenico’s team members, men and women, and I would like to thank them all for their support in this crucial period.