Service teams shows our commitment to customer care in this Covid-19 crisis
Smiths Detection’s people and technology help to make the world a safer place. We do not do this alone, but together with our customers and partners who depend on our specialist equipment to screen for threats that may harm people or infrastructure.
Most of our customers are companies and organisations that play an essential role in their countries’ critical infrastructure and Smiths Detection needs to ensure that their equipment always remains reliable. So, during this Covid-19 crisis, our service teams have continued to support our customers, demonstrating their professionalism and their commitment to providing the best possible customer care despite the difficult circumstances.
It’s been “humbling”, says Jordan Thrupp, Managing Director for Smiths Detection Australia and New Zealand, to lead a group of professionals with such a “will, desire and passion to want to see the wheels of business turning and to provide service to our customers while keeping them and their colleagues safe.”
“This has been a very trying time and a period of immense change for all of us, having to adapt to a rapidly evolving situation,” he adds. “I would like to say that it has been truly inspiring and encouraging to see the spirit of Smiths emerge and flourish through this crisis.”
Despite the severity of the Covid-19 outbreak in Italy, Smiths Detection has been able to continue with all service activities across the whole country without disruption and to work on the commissioning of hold baggage CT X-ray scanners at Bologna airport.
“It has been very difficult due to the local restriction imposed by the government during the lock-down in all the country and due to the huge spread of disease in the whole region,” says Nicolo Gattullo, Service and Aftermarket Director for Smiths Detection Italy. “But we have reorganized our structure in order to face the emergency with a high safety protocol, and a great sense of duty and professionalism.”
‘Our customers recognise our values’
He says that “our customers recognise our values, our reliability, and our expertise”, which provides a positive image for future business relationships. “In this situation, it is necessary to evolve rapidly to adapt to the situation – we need to stay connected with our people and our customers and find new strategies to support them in this extremely difficult and unprecedented period of time.”
“In this situation, it is necessary to evolve rapidly to adapt to the situation – we need to stay connected with our people and our customers and find new strategies to support them in this extremely difficult and unprecedented period of time.”
He notes widespread uncertainty among customers, particularly in the airport sector, but also a confidence that the situation will slowly improve. “At this time, customers evaluate the true partnership relationships with their suppliers, and it is necessary to be more present, to show our professionalism in support of the specific needs of customers – in the case of airports – are trying to reduce costs but at the same time preserve the investment in security systems.”
Gattullo also highlights the solidarity shown by Smiths colleagues in other countries who sent facemasks to Italy where there has been a severe shortage – “an example of how an organization with solid values can make a difference.”
Jamey Ojord, Supervisor, Service Delivery for Seattle Airport, and her team have continued to provide maintenance – both scheduled and unscheduled – in Washington state, USA. They are also supporting a new central baggage system at the airport, making sure it goes live with the minimum of issues, as well as installing a new international screening area.
On top of that, the team has completed multiple installations for the Federal Protection Service (FPS) at the airport. These were difficult to do because of access issues and other challenges resulting from the social-distancing rules imposed by the state. “Construction continued even though some key out-of-state service providers were needed to certify a piece of equipment at the checkpoint and pulled out,” she explains. “My team was able to step in and take on the project as we are onsite every day.”
‘We are all in this together’
For Jamey, one of the most important Smiths’ Values is customer focus, and Detection’s customers “rely on our team to deliver the tools they need to perform at a high level.” So it is important that “the customer sees that we are all in this together and we preserve the reputation of our product lines and service contracts.” She adds that, with limited staffing at many locations and the changes created by a decline in travelling, “security is even more paramount.”
When visiting customers during the last few weeks, she has noted that, although they are concerned with the health and safety of their staff and with ensuring that equipment can be operated while adhering to social-distancing rules, there is “a higher amount of tension in the air due to all the change and the lack of control – so it is nice that we can offer some stability.”
‘They are all heroes’
Jamey acknowledges that the team also needs to do all it can to protect the health of their families who are staying at home during the pandemic. “We all take turns spraying down the office with Lysol and hand sanitizer is used often,” she explains. “Most of us are showering twice a day and laundering our work clothing so we don’t bring the virus home to our families.”
Looking at the dedication of the field-service team, Jamey says that it is “equal to that I have seen as a United States Navy veteran. In my eyes they are all heroes.”