Successful Change Management south of the river Po
FIEGE Italy is changing its role from sub-contractor to principal contractor at the fashion sites in Castel San Giovanni and Stradella. This will benefit employees in particular.
At the beginning of 2022, on 18 January to be precise, the long-awaited news came: FIEGE Italy has taken over direct management operations at the location for Zara in Castel San Giovanni after previously managing the warehouse with the support of a cooperative. April saw the same change then take place at both the Zalando Lounge and the Zooplus locations in neighbouring Stradella. “Planning and negotiations were both quite demanding. We are therefore very pleased to be managing operations ourselves from now on and be able to take on around 1,000 employees within a few months”, Filippo Caltabiano, Regional Manager People & Culture at FIEGE Italy said.
One decisive point for the pioneering decision was the goal to constantly improve on the working conditions. FIEGE Logistics Services (FLS), which was formed especially for this reason, has signed its own collective agreement with every branch which is oriented towards the respective on-site conditions beyond its generally applicable content. “We aim to constantly increase the number of fixed-term contracts and offer social benefits to our employees and launch an even stronger performance-based bonus system. Many of these things are not a given in Italy”, Caltabiano explains.
For example, the rate of open-ended contracts must reach 45 per cent or more in the future – a clear improvement compared to the thirty per cent required under Italian law. “One special challenge in this regard is the strong seasonal fluctuations that are inherent to the fashion industry, and which require a great deal of flexibility”, says Caltabiano. This also explains why the overtime which employees have built up are recorded in an “hourly account” which can then be retrieved when there are surplus capacities. In addition, several measures have been planned to further increase efficiency and productivity at the locations.
To onboard and encourage new colleagues as best as possible, FIEGE Italy constantly evolves its People & Culture business unit. Caltabiano explains: “For us as a logistics provider, qualified employees are the be-all and end-all. To source them, recruit them and tie them to us is a daily challenge – and demonstrating our appreciation is the most important currency for us.”