Like everyone else we at SNC Technologies have been dealing with the far-reaching effects of Corvid-19. The first impact we felt was the normal 10-day New Year holiday in China effectively stretched over a month with factories being shut down and shipments stopped. Since SNC Technologies electronics equipment comes from China, this had a big impact on some of our projects. Then the Rupiah dropped 22% in value against the US dollar, thus effectively raising the price of our imported equipment for projects already tendered and started.
Exasperating the situation, our customer in Mongolia shut down their mines because their coal shipments went through China.
Starting on 24 March our Jakarta office went on Work-From-Home, and the following week so did our Balikpapan head office and our Bandung Software Development office. Fortunately, being a technology company, much of the infrastructure was already in place to handle this way of working – highspeed internet connections, Zoom accounts, remote access to data files….to name a few. Much of the SNC company culture was developed on operating in “virtual” mode with virtual meetings.
SNC Technologies’ first priority is to continue providing highest quality service to our customers. We operate large internet and satellite networks that run 24/7. We manage real-time tracking of thousands of vehicles across all of Indonesia. And we provide 24/7 help desk to support our customers. All of these systems require full-time attention and management. A lot of these services could be moved to Work-From-Home. But, some network management functions still require at-work personnel. The same goes for our SNC electronics workshop that builds and maintains all sorts of electronics.
In-addition to the office staff in four locations on three different Indonesian Islands, we also have 70 personnel deployed at mine sites working throughout Indonesia. In almost all cases, these people were put on “lock-down” by the mine operators and could not leave the site. This means the relief staff cannot be rotated in to give those on site a break. We have had to work with our people on mine site lock-down to provide them some added benefits – not only in pay, but also better internet access to communicate with their families, and special gifts to pass the time. We are still working through the stress that will be created by being locked-down on a mine site during Ramadan and Idle Fitri.
On the good side, I think that the morning department meetings via Zoom has been a catalyst to bring people together in new ways. Not only has Zoom forced a more structured approach to management and productivity, but it has created a social catalyst among employees from different departments who now find themselves “Zooming” during breaks for casual conversations and sharing stories.
I wish you all well with dealing with this new paradigm and happy Zooming!