Growing Focus on Service

The increasing importance of Service is the real revelation of the Italian branch of Gleason.
The focus on technical assistance is following the trend set by the US headquarters where the company President is also the customer-service supervisor.

by Silvia Crespi

For Gleason Sales Italy, the Italian branch of Gleason Corporation operating in sales of gear producing machinery, after sale assistance is becoming an increasingly crucial aspect of their business.
Gleason Sales offers a wide range of preventive maintenance services, which includes custom made packages suiting the needs and budgets of every company. These range from safety control, data back up, remote assistance (Gleason Connect®) to machinery relocation (GleasonSafemove).

Technical assistance as the pillar of company strategy
The Italian branch is following the example of the HQ in Rochester, New York state.
We spoke to Michele Montani, Managing director of Gleason Sales Italy. “For the HQ – explains Montani – technical assistance is a strategic pillar. Imagine, our President is also customer-service supervisor! Quite a unique situation in the industrial field.
For machinery monitoring and technical assistance management, dedicated software has been developed. In the past, assistance was managed over the phone, by e-mail etc. Each plant even had its own archive. Now, we have developed software that follows every piece of machinery installed, from its delivery at the company to the end of its active life”.
All maintenance carried out is registered on the IT system (SAP) creating a database of break down causes, costs generated and so on. Thus, management is constantly informed, in real time, of machinery status: which machines are running and which aren’t. The whole platform was developed in collaboration with SAP and is used by every branch with direct access.
Also, after express request from the President, the emergency phone line is active 24/7 in every country.
“For the last five or six years – continues Montani – Gleason has really focused on technical assistance, intensifying client support both in terms of technical consultation and spare parts.
In the case of the Italian branch, this approach has required investment (above all in terms of personnel and their training), but has also created work. Over recent years, the number of assistance technicians has doubled with maintenance contracts now existing for over one hundred installed machines. Revenues generated through service have become a constant stream and help to cover the costs of the overall system.

Being close to customers: the Gleason prerogative
This approach goes hand in hand with the company’s attention to their clients – with technical assistance now being available through the night, a service that would have been out of our reach until recently. Today, problems are solved the same day they arise”.
“Service focus is undoubtedly one of Gleason’s prerogatives – adds Montani – an Italian service assistance team sets us apart from the competition.
Our team is studded with members boasting 30 years experience in the field, coupled with younger technicians learning from their more experienced colleagues.
However, even the most qualified team members, still receive regular training updates. In the Industry 4.0 era, with full digital integration, the human factor remains the key element.”