In Simonelli Group, ideas get rewarded, those suggestions that contribute to innovation, continuous improvement of the company’s processes and products. And who better than the people who every day assemble the wiring, tubes, boilers and dispenser groups for our coffee machines, to identify the improvements that should be made to our products and processes?
“Since 1992 an ‘ideas box’ has been available for all the workers to suggest improvements and/or innovations regarding products, processes, safety and others – explains Mauro Parrini, COO Simonelli Group. “For fifteen years this initiative has been an integral part of the way we apply the principles of lean manufacturing that concern customer orientation, waste reduction and everyone’s commitment”.
Upon entering the production plant in Simonelli Group, the ideas box is highly visible at the entrance, near the list of employees’ names that, over the years, have distinguished themselves by suggesting improvements for products and processes. Gianluca Muscella, quality supervisor, consults the box every Friday. “In 2021 I collected 225 of my co-workers’ ideas, 16% of which were included in the product and process improvement plan – explains Gianluca. “These aren’t solutions that require a complete overhaul of our operations, but little tweaks that allow us to simplify and/or optimise processes, increase safety, reduce waste and further improve the performance of our products”.
Alessandro Gentili, the winner of the 2021 idea
The winner of the first prize for 2021, a trip to a European capital city, was Alessandro Gentili. Always with a smile on his face, mild-mannered and passionate about electronics, Alessandro has worked in Simonelli Group for 7 years and during his career he has contributed several ideas to improve the production process. “My colleagues told me to be a prize-habitual – jokes Alessandro – I won the first prize this year and in 2019, and in 2020 I came second”. The young electronics technician works in the line 1 testing sector and he suggested a modification to the power supply control unit of a product to extend its lifetime. “I’m really passionate about electronics and working in electrical testing gives me the chance to cultivate my interest at work as well as in my free time”, says Alessandro. “Seeing my suggestions recognised and rewarded is a great stimulus for me”.
The prize given for employees’ ideas is called “The Path of Quality”. The podium this year also saw Thomas Montecchi and Marco Salvucci who, respectively, proposed solutions for reducing waste and increasing the speed of product transfer from production to the dispatch department.