“I'd rather regret the things that I have done than the things that I have not.”
― Lucille Ball

Monday, September 21, 2009

My Cabuyao project

View inside the plant in Cabuyao
Last week I was asked to write an article for an IT newsletter of the company I am working for. I have copied the article here in my blog, but taken out the name of the company and names of individuals.

If you are smart, and I think you are, you can easily find out with some googling, which company I am working for and which contract is at stake.

Since mid 2008 I am active in the APAC region for the data center out sourcing program to deploy the manufacturing sites in the APAC region.

To give you an idea of the size of the region, the sites range from Jilin, near the Chinese / North Korean border, to Seremban in Malaysia. Currently we are supporting 7 manufacturing sites located in: Jilin and Guangdong in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Thailand, Malaysia and the Philippines.

These sites are separated by vast distances, for example flying from Bangkok to Jilin requires a 6 hours flight to Being and a 2 hours connecting flight to Jilin, followed by a 1 hour taxi ride to the site. Such a trip could easily take one day. Staff in this region speak 6 languages with various dialects.

Each country observes its own national and religious holidays. For example we celebrate 3 different New Years (Western Jan 1st, Lunar January/February, Thai in April) and Christmas is not a public holiday in many of these countries, but a week in the Philippines. This makes regional planning sometimes difficult and I remember that we made a mistake in the beginning, and lost almost two weeks in our baseline planning.

Apart from coordination I also was deployment manager for the site Cabuyao in the Philippines and currently Bangkok, which is also my place of business. The manufacturing site in Cabuyao is an Assembly Production site of moderate size, located in the Light Industrial & Science park, near to the city Cabuyao, province Laguna, Luzon, the largest of the ca. 7.100 islands of the Philippines, 43 kilometers south east of the capital Manila. It has ca. 200.000 inhabitants, but not a hotel facility according to company standards, so I had to stay in a hotel in Alabang, half an hour drive by car from Cabuyao.

In the deployment project we had to transfer the support of 70 computer systems including the local network to our support sites in Thailand, Netherlands and Poland. Apart from the technical transfer, it was my responsibility to find a solution for the IT staff on location that would be layed-off. Fortunately for three of the five employees I could find a new employer in Thailand, and for two I found an opportunity as well, but they decided to choose their own career opportunity.

Apart from the on-site team I had a team from our partner company in Thailand on site, varying in size from 3 at the start to 1 at the end. We have been there for many weeks in March-April to prepare the transfer of services and again in July-August to execute the transfer.

Cabuyao was the APAC pilot site, more or less in parallel with the EMEA pilot site in Nijmegen. We went life August 31st. The lessons learned from this site are being used for the next sites. It turned out that several weeks after care was required to stabilize the operation again, which is still ongoing.

Apart from this deployment project, I also had to find project managers for the other APAC sites. At the time of writing this article, I found project managers for all other APAC sites and last week I kicked-off the projects for the sites in Hong Kong/Guangdong and Malaysia in person.

Being back in Bangkok, I will continue the coordination for APAC deployment with manufacturing deployment management in EMEA and NXP IT manufacturing operations in Bangkok. Further I will continue with the Bangkok deployment project.


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