Guido Pietro Bertolone – CEO of Arcese Group – reports company’s response to the health emergency. Key words: security, digitisation and flexibility.
“The extent of the Coronavirus emergency was unexpected, but we have managed to contain the negative effects on our business and operations: the situation has evolved rapidly over the last few months, putting our organisation to the test, but we still managed to keep the Group’s services operational, albeit with some slowdowns. This was made possible thanks also to the digital transformation process that we have undertaken and the consequent dynamic management of services and IT resources. All our applications and services have already been (or soon will be) revised or rewritten to work in this perspective. Therefore, thanks to the architecture we created, we were able to react well to the COVID emergency, activating smartworking for over 400 employees in a very short time, and making all company applications available to users anywhere and with any device, without needing to use a specific VPN.
Other important projects have allowed us to respond in the best possible way, such as the transition from analogue technologies to a global collaboration platform and the project for the digitisation of transport processes based on the dematerialisation of relevant documents; the latter in particular, avoiding physical contact and document exchanges, has been of vital importance for us, our Clients and our Partners at this time. Today, the progressive loosening of restrictions is allowing us to gradually resume business volumes on a regular basis, but above all it is allowing us to return to the level of service promised to our customers. We are, however, aware of the need to review the common understanding of “normality”, and that our business and those of our customers will have to adapt and change.
Our priority is to restore our customers’ trust and support their businesses in the best possible way. From the beginning of the emergency to date, it has been evident that making long-term forecasts has been impossible, but the experience we have gained in recent months is considerable and on many aspects, and is enabling us to deal promptly with the limitations and operational difficulties that – at different times and in different ways – are characterizing the countries’ responses to the emergency.”
Safety, constant customer support and a timely response are therefore the key to the operation of Arcese Group’s services, which, even at this particular time, is able to guarantee air, sea, rail and road transport services and integrated logistics solutions while also offering valid alternatives to standard services to mitigate the impact of the health emergency on customers’ supply chains. Intermodal transport, for example, is proving to be one of the most effective solutions for ensuring reliability and safety for our customers. Moreover, the Air&Sea division dedicated to international shipments, thanks to a consolidated network of partners and the professionalism of our Team, is able to guarantee services on a global scale even at a time when many routes have been suspended.
It isn’t just operations: to cope with the health emergency, guarantee the continuity of its services and support customers’ businesses in complete safety, the Arcese Group has adopted strict procedures and implemented new operational processes.
ALWAYS OPERATIONAL, IN COMPLETE SAFETY
With the aim of ensuring the safety of all Group stakeholders, specific procedures have been put in place. These include, for example, measuring the temperature of anyone accessing the Group’s sites and branches and verifying that all drivers, employees and warehouse personnel are equipped with PPE (masks, disposable gloves and hand sanitiser gels), supplied by the company itself, and that they are used correctly.
Employees are furthermore asked to monitor their health and to not underestimate any symptoms of illness, and to seek medical assistance if necessary. In this regard, Arcese was among the first companies in Italy to activate a specific coverage for COVID-19 for all employees, confirming that people have always been the top priority for us. Recently, the initiative has also been followed by the Group company in Poland.
REGULAR SANITISATION OF VEHICLES
The company has started a regular sanitisation plan for the over 800 trucks of the Arcese fleet that will continue in the coming months and that, thanks to the use of specific products, allows the reduction of bacterial and viral loads on surfaces by sanitising the cabin and on-board instrumentation. This activity is of fundamental importance to protect the health of all travelling personnel, as well as an additional measure to contain the spread of COVID-19.
TRAINING AND VERIFICATION
Since the beginning of the emergency, all employees have been trained and constantly updated on COVID-19; a crisis management committee was set up in February to monitor the situation in order to act promptly in relation to the health emergency in progress.
Arcese is also actively involved in checking that all the regulations in place are respected by its organisation, by all partners and suppliers, with particular attention to drivers and the site access regulations.
FOCUS ON PEOPLE
In order to guarantee the Group’s operations, and at the same time the safety of its employees, smart working has been activated for certain functions to reduce the number of staff present in the branches and, consequently, the likelihood of contagion. On the other hand, for the staff present inside the branches, work shifts and operating positions have been reorganised in order to ensure that interpersonal safety distance is maintained during work activities. Cleaning cycles of the company premises, as well as the work stations and equipment in the offices and warehouses, have also been intensified.
Finally, travel and business trips are limited as much as possible. The use of collaborative tools to hold meetings or gatherings between colleagues, clients and partners is preferable where possible.
ALWAYS ON THE MOVE
Despite the numerous operational difficulties related to the spread of COVID-19, Arcese has set itself the goal of continuing to offer its services, trying to limit the impact of emergency management on business and ensuring the best possible level of service. Ensuring that we continue to provide our services is of paramount importance to avoid global logistics chains from stopping. For this reason, we would like to thank our customers who have continued to place their trust in Arcese, but, above all, all our partners and employees, whether on the front line or in smart working, who have made their fundamental contribution to ensure that Arcese’s operations do not stop.