Ansaldo STS’ strategy
Ansaldo STS is committed to maintaining and developing a series of distinctive abilities and expertise that create value and guarantee lasting company growth over time.
This commitment can be seen in the company’s three strategic pillars:
- Selectivity: focus on markets where it has a strong competitive position. Ansaldo STS’ growth is the result of a continuous process beginning with its awareness of its positioning and competitive edge, the identification of market opportunities in relation to its competitive levers and their translation into action plans. This process has led to the definition of strategic markets – the domestic market and the areas in which the company has a significant, recognised presence, as well as markets presenting growth opportunities, by focussing on large projects with low overheads.
- Innovation: focus on innovation as a way to gain competitive edge for long-term growth.
Ansaldo STS’ innovation strategy to increase turnover is based on improving the products it currently offers customers and differentiating its product portfolio to expand the offer, extending its business model by offering complementary services that meet its customers’ specific needs (management and maintenance activities) and meeting the specific needs of customers given their particular geographical situations (remote areas with low traffic volumes), offering cutting-edge satellite technology solutions.
- Flexibility and efficiency: maintain its competitive edge by optimising the business model with a focus on the flexibility of the offer and operating efficiency.
Efficiency is one of the strategic areas in which Ansaldo STS invests to boost its competitive position and ensure performance excellence. To pursue these aims, it has launched an improvement programme that covers all areas and optimises the opportunities arising from its global organisation.
In order to ensure the implementation of all efficiency initiatives, and, in general, all strategic initiatives, Ansaldo STS has developed an Action Implementation Monitoring (AIM) system. Through AIM, the following have been defined:
- the definition process for action and monitoring plans;
- the governance rules to ensure the frequency of review meetings focused on initiatives and the identification of any corrective action in the event of critical areas;
- tools to support management of the initiatives.
The contribution that Ansaldo STS expects of AIM is:
- completeness: having a consistent, updated picture of all initiatives underway;
- consistency: doing what has been proposed and following up on it until implementation;
- initiatives explicitly linked to company plans.
V2A stands for “Values to Actions”, the company’s most important strategic change programme set up at the start of 2014 for a three-year period. It strategically links the company’s values to its transformation project, which is strongly backed by the new CEO.
This project’s aim is to increase Ansaldo STS efficiency and effective ultimately making more competitive in the market. It drives important, innovative and challenging changes in how the company manages its operations and allocates its resources, its commercial strategy and supply management while ensuring its values and people focus are maintained. V2A consists of three macro workstreams.
The three-year goal of the Lean workstream is to optimise internal costs over their entire life cycle, saving over €120 million. It includes some of the programme's most complex and challenging initiatives, aimed at simplifying the delivery process by slashing waste. The initiatives rolled out target identifying areas with potential for improvement in order to boost product quality, cut internal costs and speed up delivery times.
Approximately 400 group employees from all over the world (mainly Europe, Australia and the US) are already implementing the V2A Lean activities. The Value Stream Mapping (VSM) tool has been used to analyse processes related to seven signalling technologies, quantify the reprocessing level (roughly 20-30% on average) and identify ways to improve operating methods in order to eliminate (or significantly cut down) identified wastage.
The improvement proposals were put together in a “Lean Catalogue”.
Work will continue in 2015 to apply the “Lean Catalogue” ideas to all projects and to expand and analyse the catalogue itself. This workstream was particularly focused on streamlining employee allocation to projects and optimising how such employees are used on the projects. Ansaldo STS’ Lean Methodology is a bona fide cultural revolution in how company activities and processes are managed and requires the entire company workforce to change their approach. Such change, however, was, and will be, steered by ad-hoc training courses.
The New Road workstream is the natural development and continuation of other supplier optimisation projects aimed at cutting overall external purchase costs.
The project selected certain cost macro-categories considered strategic. Detailed specific possibilities to create efficiency were identified for each macro-category of costs, with their implementation expected to generate results in the medium and long term. Over €40 million in greater efficiency for the entire life cycle was already obtained in 2014. Various department areas on a global scale are involved in the project, promoting and strengthening best practices in external cost management throughout the entire organisation.
The aim of the Top Line workstream is to find new market opportunities that ensure good margins and relatively short life cycles (from the order to revenue generation) compared to traditional signalling and/or turnkey projects. The focus for 2014 was on components – how to raise sales of existing components and how to extend the portfolio by entering into new adjoining sectors –, services and tram systems. Ansaldo STS entered directly into the multibeam Hot Box Detectors sector thanks to a partnership set up as part of this workstream.
There was a specific communication campaign dedicated to the V2A Programme, bolstered by constant messages from the CEO to all company personnel, in order to spread awareness of Ansaldo STS new approach. “Share the passion, a call for action!” was the leading slogan of the campaign: a call to all Ansaldo STS personnel to participate in the change, each with their own professional contribution. There was also a specific image campaign linked to the various stages of the communication process, which will also continue throughout 2015 (email, intranet, in-house screens, meetings with management).