Once more, we left early in the morning as we had a tight program and finally, the transfer toHong Kong. We left the hotel shortly before 8am and we made our way through the rush hour to the SGS branch where we arrived 10 minutes prior to our schedule arrival time. Kimmo Ahtokari and Janet Chu already expected us in front of the building. After a warm welcome by Mrs Chu, Mr Ahtokari started his interesting presentation about the company SGS and in general, about SGS in Guangzhou.
The company is active in more than 100 countries. In China, it has dozens of branches. However, most of them are located along the coast. They are located very close to their customers. In Shanghai, where most of the mobile telephones are built, SGS set up a test centre which is specialised on them. Hence, the company adapt its services according to the industry located in the area.
After the presentation, we had the chance to visit the different labs at the SGS location. We saw so many interesting things, such as test station for office chairs… A chair is automatically rolled back and forth (incl weight on it). Guess, how many times you have to do that in order to get a representative test report? 1’000, 5’000, 30’000 50’000… No! The answer is: 100’000 times back and forth!!! Another example is interesting as well: We saw how a machine testing a stairwalker. In order to write a test report, it undergoes 25’000 simulated steps… Unfortunately, we were not allowed to take any pictures. The company does tests either on behalf of companies or to compare products from different producers. Every tested product receives a report and a certification which is required for launching products on the different markets. The SGS branch in Guangzhou can test the products according to different standards. Not every nation has the same standards or requirements for a product.
After this very interesting visit, we got back on our bus and drove to Shenzhen, where a visit at Lenovo’s Notebook factory was scheduled.
We were welcomed by Sharon Lee and were guided to a very comfortable meeting room. Mr Sun Zhixiong, Senior Manager of Order Execution, presented us Lenovo and the key points of its future strategy. It was very interesting to discuss the impact of a merger of two totally different companies and cultures: Chinese and American! This fact was also very strongly represented in the company’s strategy as well as to strengthen its position in the markets by being more customer-oriented. Last month, the company produced a record high number of more than 650’000 notebooks at the factory (it produces exclusively for export).
After the fascinating presentation, we headed to the top floor for a tour around the production line. The whole production of a notebook is split into many steps and Mrs Anwyn Zeng patiently answered all the questions the students had. Every single step requires exactly 24 seconds for completing it and then, the notebook will be handed over to the next employee. It was very fascinating to see how a notebook is produced.
One hour later, we have left China by crossing the border to Hong Kong! Everybody was very excited about arriving in the city centre and seeing the skyline for the first time. Nevertheless, we had some troubles at the borders: one passport was undertaken closer examination, an other person did apparently not match the picture in the passport and the luggages of two persons have been double-checked… Eventually, everybody made it to the subway station where we boarded the train for Kowloon! After enjoying the laser show at night time, some students went for dinner. Afterwards, some students enjoyed a late night drink at the Acqua Bar which offers an amazing view!
There is only one day left…