The four challenges of sustainability


Protagonist of the ecologic transition, Sabaf Group faces the sustainability issue by dealing with economic, social, environmental and technological aspects. The company has been protagonist at Futura Expo in Brescia.

Currently, sustainability is increasingly acknowledged as the most important competitiveness factor for our Country and its enterprises, since a shared environment-friendly growth can be the driving engine of a really widespread inclusive wellbeing. In this respect, there is an entrepreneurial laboratory in Brescia where companies, organizations and enterprises dialogue and develop knowledge, expertise and network, in a contamination of knowledge and points of view, with the aim of developing innovative solutions and benefitting from financing able to give a neat acceleration to the ecologic transition. We are referring to Futura Expo that took place from 2nd to 4th October at Brixia Forum to inform, to educate and to propose concrete practices and best practices about the sustainability theme.
Concerning this, the name of Sabaf not fortuitously stands out among participating companies.

Laura Ipogino, Group HR Director, Sabaf Group.

«We fully share the vision according to which Man, Nature, Environment and Economy can and have to live together in harmony», explains Laura Ipogino, Group HR Director, Sabaf Group. «The participation in Futura Expo allowed us to witness our commitment that supports a strategy aimed at granting the sustainable success in the long term. At Futura Expo we had the opportunity to present Sabaf Group’s policies that match economic, social and environmental sustainability».
Currently reality of international ranking, Sabaf represents a Brescia excellence abroad. «At present Sabaf has factories worldwide but it remains strongly rooted in Brescia territory, where they maintain not only the head (headquarters), but also the most important manufacturing site, which employs about 500 people», Ipogino adds. «We believe that Brescia has a strong propensity for “making things happen”. We believe it will prove to be an innovator also in the sustainability matter, becoming example of concreteness in dealing with such a complex theme».

Quality control of printed circuit boards.

Higher performances
Sustainability has been colouring Sabaf’s business model for some time, as proven by the company’s commitment to cultivating it concretely in more directions, in-house and outside the enterprise. «Sabaf Group has adopted business ethics and socially responsible behaviour as the funding elements of its entrepreneurial model», Ipogino tells. «We have processed a strategy and a governance model that can assure the sustainable success in time; in our Industrial Plan we have clearly defined and quantified environmental sustainability targets (like emissions) and social ones (for instance, in terms of collaborators’ training and work safety). We are also aware that the sustainable success depends on the degree of consonance and sharing of values with all of our stakeholders, with whom we have established an open clear dialogue».
Moreover, an effective sustainability can be reached by upgrading manufacturing, in compliance with the broader paradigm of the ecologic transition. «The attention to environmental issues is concretized in both innovative production processes, which determine a lower energy impact in the product manufacturing, and in the design of eco-efficient products during their daily use», Ipogino confirms. « Sabaf’s product innovation strategy, in fact, deems the research of higher environmental-impact performances as priority».
On the other hand, concerning the sustainability theme, Sabaf operates on the market as a real pioneer, now satisfied with assessing the green awareness is increasingly diffused on the market and heritage of a growing number of realities. «Sabaf has already published the Social and Sustainability Report since 2000, years when sustainability was not such a topical matter on Brescia territory as today», Ipogino remembers. «Finally, with Futura Expo we believe that a real time of change, publicly communicated, occurs in the awareness of all Brescia-area enterprises that take part in it. We are certain that an ever-rising number of enterprises will publish their Social and Sustainability Report».

Very high precision dimensional controls.

The human side of innovation
In an age of strong technological innovation like ours, according to a green vision, the contribution of the human component in manufacturing high-quality products will be always protagonist. «The idea of work as passion for a project based on common values, in which everybody can symmetrically identify, represents not only a moral engagement but the true guarantee of enhancement of intangible assets», Ipogino comments. «In this prospect, the sharing of values constitutes the joining link between the promotion of a business culture oriented to the social responsibility and the development of its intellectual capital».
From design to manufacturing, the contribution of the human component to innovation is expressed in more directions. «Innovation is at the core of our sustainable development strategy», Ipogino confirms. «To be efficacious in the company, Sabaf Group creates an environment where, in each ambit, human resources are strongly motivated to adopt innovative behaviours and it promotes each activity that drives innovation, so that the latter can be considered integral part of the business strategy, strongly rooted in the business culture».
To be efficacious in the company, in fact, according to Sabaf Group, innovation must own some precise features. Ipogino counts at least three: «Continuity: each opportunity is good to improve something; one of the main enemies of innovation is stillness, the fact of connecting with a consolidated success without having the capability of questioning ourselves. Globality: innovation is often meant only and exclusively as product one; such vision must be widened, considering as innovation also ameliorative changes of each organizational aspect, from the operational process to management methodologies, up to including the company it its globality. Diffusion: innovation must not be privilege of few selected people, but instead the innovative process must be shared by the whole company at any hierarchical level and by each professional role».

Tool manufacturing.

The competences of the present and of the future
Precisely for this reason, Sabaf is constantly committed to staff’s training activities, cultivating relationships with the school and university world to identify the talents of the future. «In Sabaf Group, collaborators’ professional growth is supported by an unceasing training course», Ipogino highlights. «In particular, for young people Sabaf has always established relationships with schools and universities in the territory and organizes targeted meetings to attract young graduated talents. Moreover, the Group proposes internship and/or apprenticeship experiences aimed at offering a training experience that can aid them in understanding personal attitudes and propensities and in which the transversal training on the job is experimented».
Concerning this, today the focus of a company like Sabaf Group concentrates on different professional profiles and figures. «The professional figures we are most looking for are in manufacturing ambit, Research and development, design and constant improvement. In particular, we are searching for figures of specialized workers with technical diplomas to be engaged in our manufacturing sites, as well as mechanical, electronic and managerial engineers in the ambit of the departments of Research and development, Engineering, Quality, Sales and Supply Chain».

The human component is fundamental in each manufacturing phase.

Beyond the need of employing new professional figures in the company from time to time, Sabaf Group considers the new transversal skills that must belong to all of its collaborators to be decisive, to manufacture high-quality innovative products. The competences researched and developed by Sabaf Group in the ambit of its organization are well specified by Ipogino: «Creativity and critical thinking, that is to say mastering a variety of approaches and problem-solving strategies, and the capability of reviewing one’s own position if new information emerge; proactive approach, that is to say researching solutions to possible problems before they arise as well as the introduction of ameliorations; independent thinking, meant as thinking “outside the box”, even if it can sometimes diverge from the popular opinion; technological knowledge, then understanding and use of technology to improve work processes; willingness of listening to others’ suggestions and to analysing new solutions; collaboration, that is to say to work with others and to understand others’ opinions, by evaluating them, to reach a creative shared solution; understanding of changes, that is to say recognizing the important changes that occur in a determinate context or to foresee when they might take place; empowerment, that is to say encouraging collaborators to find innovative solutions; finally, identifying and awarding those who take the initiative and act creatively», Ipogino ends.