A Story of Hope

Asia Pacific Region

The grey skies seem to have lifted above China as shortly after the Chinese Spring Festival holiday, the China Ops team received a notification from a customer for an outage in Baochang which was to begin at the end of February. This was unexpected as most of the project have been postponed and many businesses have remained closed since the Chinese Spring Festival due to virus outbreak. Naturally, people were still worried of exposing themselves through travels. The daunting task at hand was to mobilize a team of 21 employees from different locations around China to the project site.

Resource Manager, Zanyang, sent a notice to a group of field technicians asking for volunteers to be part of the project, and to consider customer’s expectation while reminding them on ‘execution as a priority’. To his surprise within 30 minutes, there were more than 20 positive responses, many of them have confirmed that they acknowledge the situation and will try their best to protect themselves and be available so that the project runs according to schedule.

While the resource team was confirming the employees, other functions were also activated to ensure the success of the outage. The operations team and EHS provided proper protection to our employees when they were on the road, during quarantine period in the hotel and on job site; HR issued documentations to local governments, heads of resident communities to get employees released; tooling and sourcing team sourced proper equipment and cleansing materials to ensure sufficient supplies throughout the duration of the project; while the resource team coordinated the rest of essential site logistics. Each of the functions collaborated and worked seamlessly, ensuring the outage’s success.

On February 20th, the 21 field employees started their journey from 21 different provinces and cities. They had a common goal – Baochang, to support the first outage in China in 2020. This proved to be one of toughest assignment they had experienced – no food provided by hotel; each of the employees isolated separately in the hotel; no air-conditioner was allowed to be used in the room; lack of supplies in the town we just among the few to mention. These challenges amounted to nothing compared to the task of putting the machine back online and providing power to the grid. The Ops team worked very hard to get food supplied, organized EHS training during isolation and kept employees connected; setting up a regular chat channel to understand employees’ concerns which also allowed them to work closely with the end-customer on site rest areas. After 14 days quarantine period, the 21 employees team finally started to work on job site on March 5th, 2020.

Now, almost 3 weeks into the project, the team that came together be it at field of at the office has adopted to a new routine which closely follows BCP guidelines. They hold strong to the belief that as the project progresses towards completion, the virus situation will improve, and they will see the smiles again on each other’s face which have been hidden behind the masks of fear and sadness since Chinese Spring Festival.