HP Singapore takes home the Team of the Year award in the Manufacturing category

From surviving to thriving in the pandemic, the team leverages technology to achieve a new level of operational excellence and successfully delivered a new white ink plant in Singapore.

HP Singapore Ink Operations (SIO) Indigo clinched the Team of the Year Award under the Manufacturing category at the recently concluded Singapore Business Review Management Excellence Awards 2022.

The past three years have been challenging yet rewarding for HP SIO Indigo. From surviving to thriving in the pandemic, the team led with ambition and agility, grew together, and provided its customers with best-in-class operational excellence, and flawless and effective NPI execution whilst becoming one of the best workplaces with super high employee engagement.

Overcoming global COVID-19 constraints with zero travel from Singapore and by harnessing innovative technology, the team successfully delivered the White ink plant within a year to expand its manufacturing capabilities and enable a better print experience for its customers, especially when it comes to labels and packaging globally. 

It was at the height of the pandemic when the approval for this new facility at the Singapore Tuas site happened. Beyond the pressure of working during a pandemic, the teams were faced with tight schedules, travel restrictions, and budget constraints. However, the team managed to turn every challenge presents into an opportunity for innovation.

The first challenge was how to bring employees from Singapore to Israel to work together when pandemic-related travel restrictions separated them by almost 8,000 kilometres and a six-hour time difference. By creatively leveraging technology like smart glasses, employees utilise this tool during training, troubleshooting, and remote support. 

The second challenge was global supply chain disruptions that impacted the availability of logistics, materials, and manpower. The risk of suppliers and contractors missing their delivery commitments was high, and the project had no buffer time factored into the compressed schedule. Showing its resourcefulness, the team reduced high-risk elements outside of its control and concentrated on elements that could be controlled. They investigated equipment from existing HP manufacturing assets which were made redundant recently and looked for ways to repurpose and put it to use in this project. Doing so resulted in financial savings, increased sustainable impact, and a clever workaround for material and logistics constraints.

The third challenge was adhering to the budget. In a short period, the cost percentage for services and materials had risen by double digits. To minimise the impact of rising expenses and remain innovative in their design planning, the team had to be creative and flexible. They designed the factory plan with provisions for a potential 10-year capacity expansion whilst catering to the 3- to 5-year capacity requirements. This approach helped defray the rising costs and mitigate time delays for setup and construction.

Overcoming these challenges was a massive feat made possible by the team who showed resourcefulness, the ability to take calculated risks, and a growth mindset.

On driving operational excellence and resilience, the team delivered a 25% surge in productivity gains compared to where they were before COVID-19, and with four consecutive years of high employee engagement scores at 98%. The team continues to delight the customers through best-in-class execution despite all the constraints brought by COVID, supply chain disruptions, geopolitical conflicts, climate change and inflation. When borders were closed, the team answered the call for volunteers to work on the frontlines of production, where it is hands-on to keep its production lines running 24/7 so that they can ship good-quality inks to the customers. 

The team from HP SIO Indigo has shown high levels of professionalism, strong commitment, and incredible dedication.

The SBR Management Excellence Awards is presented by Singapore Business Review Magazine. To view the full list of winners, click here. If you want to join the 2023 awards programme and be acclaimed for your company's employee engagements and management initiatives, please contact Julie Anne Nuñez at [email protected].

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