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Saleri Industrial Management Lab: a project in cooperation with the Politecnico of Milano

Mercredi 26 Novembre 2019

During the month of March was launched a project in cooperation with Industrie Saleri Italo spa and two students from Politecnico of Milano. The project involved the Lumezzane plant for the production phases and the one of Provaglio for logistics. The goal? Verify the effectiveness and efficiency of the manufacturing personnel management, both direct and indirect.
The project is integrated into the Industrial Management Lab course guided by Professor Alberto Portioli Staudacher, responsible for the Lean Excellence Centre research group (, with the contribution of Ing. Federica Costa, in charge of giving methodological support to the students.
The Industrial Management Lab program aims to develop the students' skills in resolving problems and successfully implement improvement projects, towards the allocation of a company project, of an academic tutor and a company tutor.
Saleri - seizing the proposal of their Continuous Improvement Team - opened its doors with enthusiasm to this non-conventional course of studies. This course was offered to 23-years-old Alberto Dondi and Alessandro Guerreschi, Grad students from the 5th year of Managerial Engineering, which had the opportunity to put into practice and experience - in the working environment - the knowledge and the tools gained during their academic career.
The students were entrusted to the Saleri tutor from the Continuous Improvement Department, Ing. Pamela Cattaneo and Ing. Silvia Bortoli - which is going to relate about the experience.
“Thanks to the LAB, the company can take advantage of supported and prepared resources, that can be managed in a very flexible way in order to satisfy the requests made. In the specific case, we have completed an important work of data collection and analysis which, precisely because conducted by “external” personnel, allowed the management of information with neutrality”. Says Silvia Bortoli.
The project involved different players from different company departments, with presentations in which also the Saleri Top Management took part, encouraging a global, cross and wide vision. “The couple experience” has been effective.
“It was possible to amplify the level of detail of analysis and deepening of issues, triggering a sort of auto-correcting and auto-improvement mechanism that helped the project good results”.
Especially if inside the team complementary competences and personal qualities – like the ones of Alberto and Alessandro – mingle together.
“Until July we have been busy for a couple of days a week in the company in order to collect data and have meetings with personnel”, says Alessandro Guerreschi. “The other part of the job took place off-site and aimed to analyse the collected data and see how much the work force management system was efficient related to the A3 methodologies” adds Alberto Dondi.
In other words, they went hunting for problems and improvement actions effectively upgradable, experimenting on field technical-academic models and tools. The company, from its perspective, gained valuable hours to deepen strongly interesting issues with method and scientific basis. A perfect integration between roles, competences and opportunities.
“Saleri was expecting from us an objective analysis of efficient solutions to problems or weaknesses in the management system”, affirms Guerreschi. “At the same time – goes on Dondi – we are offered the opportunity of developing new competences and social skills handling first-hand a company project”.
They both have very high expectations when it comes to their professional careers.
“For us it was a completely new experience. One thing is the academic schedule, another thing is the real approach into the workplace. We didn’t know much about Saleri, if not about its remarkable inclination to innovation, not only technological, but also when it comes to industrial management.
Dondi and Guerreschi will graduate at the beginning of 2020, after completing a study path that saw them proceeding side by side.
“We’ve known each other for a long time. We try to blend in, especially now during this educational project. Facing the same task from two different points of view is very helpful and profitable. We are trying to apply the theoretical methods to the reality found in the company. It is a challenge which allows us to learn from each other every day.”
The Dondi and Guerreschi experience have an immediate impact on Saleri’s operations.
 “In first place - the project allows us to bring into life, thanks to interviews and data, some inefficiencies that disguise into everyday activities, and to channel the collective efforts following a clear and shared method”.
On June 22nd, the final presentation at the Politecnico of Milano took place, and important event that saw the Saleri – represented by our Continuous Improvement Manager Ing. Pamela Cattaneo - participating as well:
“On the occasion of this appointment, the students were able to display to the representatives of the Lean Excellence Center all the various steps and the method set at the beginning of the project, therefore the collected data and the analysis made. The presentation was then an occasion to mention possible further development or possible areas on which could be interesting to make further analysis”.
Lastly, after the summer break, the company organized a final meeting with the students in order to present all Saleri Managers and Chiefs the whole project, with particular focus on results and possible further ideas.
This experience has highlighted the good aptitudes of the students, as Silvia Bortoli confirms:
“Alberto and Alessandro displayed efficient verbal-communication and graphic skills during corporate presentations, relating to the responsible and plant operators during the project at Saleri. They can prepare very efficient presentations and summaries, with a fruitful use of the A3 model for the problem solving”.
Two students to keep up with.
“We have truly appreciated their engagement during the whole project: their dedication and constant commitment, and more in general, an always respectful and polite approach, accompanied by a solid methodological approach built on rigour, order, and mind frame in conducting the activities.

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