Modern equipment, larger working area, training and a new challenge that included all-round car servicing. This is how Leonardo Lippi transformed his father's tyre workshop in Grosseto into the Euromaster Leonardo Gomme multi-service centre. We talked about this with Alessandro Marchesini, who at Leonardo Gomme oversees acceptance, looks after the motorbike sector and is qualified to carry out MOT inspections.
Alessandro Marchesini when did this workshop open?
"It was Paolo, Leonardo's father, who opened the workshop back in 1973. In the beginning, it was just a small place for tyre maintenance. Leonardo started working in the workshop in the late 1990s and for 10 years he only dealt with tyres. From 2000 onwards things started to change. After taking over the business, Leonardo changed the name from Lippi Gomme to Leonardo Gomme and started to organize the business differently. At first the staff was made up of three workers: a secretary who managed the appointments while Leonardo and another worker took care of the workshop. After a period of adjustment, Leonardo decided to take a risk and invest time and resources in enlarging the workshop and join the Euromaster network. This is how the vehicle inspection centre, and the mechanical side of the business came to be, growing from the 500 square metres of the old premises to the 1,200 of today”.
What changed since joining Euromaster?
"Since 2012, after joining Euromaster we have evolved, expanding our offer from a simple tyre workshop to a multi-service centre capable of working on different aspects of the vehicles. The decision to join the network was linked to the desire for a business expansion and a different approach to our work, both from an organisational and technical-professional point of view. And to do this we went through a lot of training”.
What did this training program consist of?
"The first step involved approaching the customers and managing work sheets. Thanks to a management system provided to us by Euromaster, we set up a method that allowed us to work with great precision. Starting with quotations in which all the details of the work are clearly outlined. Once approved by the customer, the quotation becomes a work sheet that is sent digitally to the tablets at each workstation, so that the operators know exactly what maintenance work needs to be done on each vehicle. In addition to the organisational and technical aspects, Euromaster has also helped us to improve our marketing methods so that we are more recognisable and able to attract more customers”.
How is the multi-service centre organized now?
"We have three departments in which 16 specialists work, each with a clearly defined role. We have someone who takes care of the accounts, a person at the front office, three people who take care of the reception, two who work on MOT inspections, three specialised mechanics, while the rest are tyre specialists who take care of cars, light and heavy transport vehicles as well as field work with four fully equipped vans. It has been a while, but we can say that we have managed to turn the workshop into a specialised centre where the level of professional expertise is very high".
Speaking of expertise, how do you choose your employees?
"The choice is not easy, and this is because there is a lack of professionals. The personnel we have managed to hire come from existing or past workshops. The problem is that we cannot find young people who are interested in working in a workshop. Even some who have worked with us left after some time. In the long run, the lack of specialists represents a danger for the entire sector”.
What are the plans for the future?
"We have projects concerning electric and hybrid mobility. The intention is to refine the skills associated with these vehicles in order to provide a professional service. As far as our structure is concerned, we are considering expanding it further to create a warehouse and an area reserved to motorbikes, as well as installing a charging station for electric vehicles.