exchanging knowledge across borders
On customer’s demand, Aalberts integrated piping systems is expanding its business from the Netherlands to the United States. Exchanging technological knowledge to the United States involved an engineer visiting the Netherlands to dive deep into the latest technologies and putting all of this mission-critical knowledge, learned in one week, into practice back home.
“We’re currently receiving new cutting, bending, forming and assembly machines at our facility in the United States,” explains Tracy Weinstein, manufacturing engineer at our competence centre in South Carolina. “The company asked me to travel to Hilversum in the Netherlands to learn more about the machines, and better understand how they operate and can contribute to advancing the business. The machines are entirely new, and to step in and see where we are going is fantastic. They will enable us to take care of some complicated processes, yet operationally they are a dream to operate and are extremely intuitive to use. As we transition to the new equipment, the trip has given me a great opportunity to meet expert colleagues face-to-face, better understand who does what, and then transfer the information back to my department. The trip was the first of several planned from both sides of the Atlantic.
”Aalberts integrated piping systems gained a lot of experience in forming techniques for press fittings in the Netherlands, and Herco Mul, manufacturing engineering team lead, explains the importance of sharing within the company. “Aalberts integrated piping systems on both sides of the Atlantic is on the same journey, so we are able to pass on what we have learned. Here in the Netherlands we know how to manage the process and what outside machining is needed. And we have also selected the right suppliers and the right raw materials, and optimised the process. Tracy’s trip was both focused on getting to know the machines and sharing that process. And in a while we will go to the United States to see how they are doing things and I am sure we will exchange knowledge again.”
Despite only joining the company in December 2020, Tracy says the journey has helped her realise just how much potential there is for additional knowledge sharing. “It’s clear we have tremendous know-how within the organisation, and being able to tap into the experience of our mission-critical people will help us incorporate new ideas and developments more quickly and effectively. The possibilities are limitless, and now that we have all become so used to virtual connectivity I can imagine a structured approach to information sharing going forward. This will help us continue to build on the strength of Aalberts’ operations around the globe.”
As a progressive company, we are transforming the way we operate globally by applying knowledge-sharing across the organisation, which helps us roll out innovations faster and improve business processes