How Energy Group solved the challenge of overlapping meetings

Last month, we sat down with the CEO of Energy Group, Lucio Ferranti. The goal of our meetup was to find out how Joan has improved the company’s meeting experience.

Let’s have a look.

Meet Energy Group

Not only is Ferranti the company’s CEO, but he is also the founder. Energy Group was established in 1995 as a software reseller. Ten years later, the company got into 3D printers.

As one of the first companies in Italy to provide professional-grade 3D printers, they’ve grown to be one of the major resellers in their field, generating revenue of around 20 million.

Energy Group’s clientele ranges from the big and the small, covering numerous industries, including well-known automotive companies.

The market for 3D printers is growing and so is Energy Group. Over the years, the company has had to expand. In 2015, Energy Group became a member of SolidWorld Group, the biggest Italian group for 3D technologies and Industry 4.0. Later, in 2016, Energy Group moved to its new headquarters with a large showroom, complete with meeting rooms shared with about 80 employees of the whole group. Here, the sales team provides on-site tours of the printers, satisfying the customers’ need to see the machines in action.

The problem: Overlapping meetings lead to bad first impressions with the clients

The showroom became quite a hotspot for customers looking for hands-on experience with the products, seeing lots of traffic on any given day.

In truth, booking the meeting rooms actually ran quite smoothly with sales personnel reserving meeting rooms with ease. Still, Ferranti knew it could be better— have more of an “impact.”

Every week, the team printed off a calendar for the week, wasting paper with little to no impact on operations, as many employees ignored the paper printout, resulting in overlapping meetings, despite management’s efforts.

When COVID-19 struck, Energy Group found demonstrating their products quite a challenge. The show-and-tell of 3D printers is something best done in person. Prospective customers want to see the parts, touch the printers, and watch the printer work. Demonstrating a physical product via a remote call didn’t pack the same punch.

As soon as they could, Energy Group reopened their offices with new rules in place to support the health and safety of visitors and staff alike.

As Ferranti explains, there were rules and restrictions, but he wanted something visual to support them.

White Joan 6 display

The solution: A modern display that seamlessly integrates with existing booking systems

It’s perfect for us. It fits.”

Ferranti had heard about Joan a few years back. However, he hadn’t felt pressed to actually look into the office management system.

Fast forward to 2022, Ferranti knew a visual solution would help keep everyone safe and meeting rooms organized. Therefore, he “immediately got Joan.” As he says,

“It was really helpful because we didn’t change the way we booked the room.”

Instead, Joan integrated seamlessly with their in-house solutions. The devices were mounted and working within minutes, cleanly displaying each meeting room’s agenda. Ferranti found the design “very very nice” and had no issues at all with the setup and running of the devices.

As for the installation, it was “really simple” and Ferranti felt comfortable doing it himself. These days,

“Everybody knows when the room is booked or not. It’s a very clear way to say: ‘Stop! Don’t go there because someone else took the room.’”

Onboarding and first impressions: Gratitude at first sight

When asked how he introduced the devices to his teams, Ferranti replied, “In a very simple way.”

First of all, he hosted a brief meeting with the team that usually manages room booking, explaining how to operate the meeting room booking system. He simply demonstrated using the touchscreen, removing the device from its wall mount, and scheduling meetings using the calendar.

“It was very easy” and his team “absolutely appreciated it.”

Joan 6 display indicating an available meeting room

The results: Smooth meetings lead to a better guest experience

“Joan solved a lot of issues related to the overlap — when people were in the rooms that someone has previously booked,” says Ferranti. With Joan, everyone can tell if a room is free or not.

Now, the sales staff avoid unprofessional overbooking scenarios and the overall effect is a better, organized experience.

Ferranti’s favorite feature is the ability to customize Joan to display the company’s logo, which is available with the Professional subscription and higher. It’s a feature that everyone would notice and looks very professional on-site.

He also loves the design of the displays — they’re easy to read and navigate. At first glance, the display shows what’s happening in the room and room availability.

“The device is perfect to manage and control your planning in your meeting room.”

Next step: Improving visitor check-in 

Moving forward, Ferranti will be reexamining the office experience for clients and guests. He’s looking into solutions to support visitor registration and share visitor security policies.

Ultimately, Ferranti is looking to improve the customer experience by designing a professional, modern front for Energy Group.

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