Stand on giant’s shoulder, allow thy self to become a giant
In 2004 freshly graduated from university, Mr. Yu Jia received offer from Suntech, and thus started his professional career in Suntech. Back then he was very energetic and was looking forward to his new life; nowadays he is steady, richly experienced, and active, individual characteristics are also the reflection of the common treats of the company. Today the person visited the Suntech Figure to be interviewed is the person in charge of Suntech module factory, Mr. Yu Jia, who takes up the heavy responsibility of entire Suntech module factory’s production and management tasks. What excellent stories does he hasand to be shared with us?
Q: You have joined Suntech since 2014, what can you share with us regarding the past 16 years of the company and individual development?
A:It can be said that I am amongst guys grew together with Suntech, there are many fluctuations over these past 16 years, and I have many thoughts. Firstly, I have always been gratitude towards Suntech. Thanks for management’s grooving back then and opportunities offered to us by the company. Suntech has always offered very good growth space and patience towards grooving new comers in area of talent cultivation. No matter in professionalism cultivation, or in perspective of integrity, Suntech is a very good platform. Secondly, I have always firmly believed that Suntech can be rebuilt back to its glory, of course this belief is well grounded. Currently the company is on the rise, Suntech overall has the same philosophy from top to bottom on preparation of marketing strategies and management methods. Also the company currently has relatively young overall workforce, people are brave to think and dare to fight, it seems that the company has formed a vibrant cooperative culture. Based on these perspectives, I do have patience and faith in Suntech.
Q: You have just mentioned that Suntech has given many spaces for young people in aspect of talent cultivation, could you offer some specific examples here?
A: Back then when we just joined the company, freshly graduated from university, didn’t know anything, just stuck in laboratory doing experiments every day, our manager told us, “Do the experiment as you please, you can waste 10, 100, or even 1000 solar panels in due process, but as long as you could reach one valuable conclusion, then no matter to you or to the company, the sacrifice of these 1000 cell panels are valuable waste”.
It could be said that our growth is completedon top of giant’s shoulders, and Suntech is this giant with great stature. You may think that we are standing on top of giant’s shoulders, as faster the giant is running, our individual development speed is also faster along the way; for the time being, as the person in charge of module factory, I must take this responsibility, also as the foundation stone of this Suntech “pyramid”, module factory bears the responsibility of mastering lifeblood of the entire company’s operations. From some certain point of view, I guess I could also be counted as a “small giant”.
Fully automatic production line brings functional automation
Q: Recently Suntech’s fully automatic production line has been put into production, what substantial influence does this has on Suntech’s “enhancing efficiency and increasing production”?
A: “Enhancing efficiency” is a well-known concept to Suntech people, it has two sides of “enhancing hardware efficiency” and “enhancing software efficiency”. Enhancing hardware efficiency means fully automation progress of production lines. Since 2019Q1, Suntech has initiated 2GWautomation upgrade project on module production line. We all know that there are five major procedures during module production process: soldering, layout, lamination, framing, and final inspection. The focus of this round of production line upgrade has been on adding the fully automation equipment of layout procedure and final inspection procedure. The automation equipment implemented in layout procedure is the most technologically advanced equipment in current industry. Meanwhile five fully automatic assembly line equipment in procedural transition stage are newly added. Previously the connections betweenassorted procedures required manual handling. Through this round of automatic modification, large amount of labor costs has been saved, number of labors required has been decreased nearly 50%. It is estimated that by the end of this year, 14 original production lines in module factory would be gradually re-integrated into 8fully automatic large scaled production lines. On basis of ensuring production capacity, its practicality and full automation degree are both ranked the highest in the industry”.
Enhancing software efficiency means the changes of personnel technical requirement and management method, these would all be changed along with hardware upgrade. Fullyautomatic production line has posted higher requirement on staff’s capabilities, firstly the required quantity for technical talents has been doubled, production line staffs need to be familiar with equipment parameters and production procedures etc. steps, certain level of equipment maintenance capability is also required, especially the capability of handling parameter abnormal, this would also greatly promote staff’s own career development. In area of management method, production line would become an organic whole, which requires coordinated operation of procedure, equipment, and personnel etc. areas, abandon previous malady of shirking responsibility, manage and operate production lines as a whole, and ensure effectiveness and stability. Advantages brought by future automatic production lines would be not only the release of production capacity, but also the bonus of functional automation and clarity.
Q: How do you look at the relationship between the module factory upgrade stage and other departments’ daily operations?
A:As early as in the preliminary stage of “five years plan” proposed by the company, arrangement of module factory’s overall upgrade has been steadily initiated, for the time being under the circumstances of ensuring production progress, module factory has been successfully upgraded. During this process, module factory and the company have formed a very good organic combination relationship, each department’s responsibilities are clear, and production lines transitions are stable. Brand new automatic production lines can externally provide better endorsement, we do have such capability is also a very good promotion, which could increase customer’s faith. With the brand bonus accumulated over many years, we walk on both legs oftechnology plus brand, and there is an excellent market positioned right in front of Suntech.
Stay focused on customer, and stick to the quality to cope with changes
Q: Look back at the photovoltaic industry’s fluctuations in recent years, how much impact does it has on our manufacturing end?
A: I would express my point of view from our perspective of manufacturing end, the ups and downs of the industrial market is out of our control, what we can do is to face it actively, this mainly comprises of two pints: firstly, the company has always hold the principle of “everything around manufacturing, and manufacturing around customer”, advocated the customer centered concept, such flat mechanism allowed our production end can faster accept real time feedback from market end, thus to handle it faster, and control risk at the lowest level. Secondly, manufacturing end closely grasps quality control, no matter how severe the market tidal waves are, we just shine our gold-lettered sign board of Suntech quality, stick to the quality to cope with changes. In this way based on firm foundation of quality, integrated with fast feedback from market, we can take the offensive or defensive as we choose, and occupy advantageous position in the market.
Q: As you have mentioned the gold-lettered sign board of Suntech quality, do you feel whether the quality has been integrated into the blood of Suntech?
A: Yes of course, quality has always been the lifeline for Suntech’s survival, at module factory, I have always emphasized the concept of “craftsmanship”, I frequently spoke with module factory’s staffs that “actually each and every one of you are a craftsman, products going through your production lines are artworks you have created, therefore it is required of you to treat each panel of module with a heart of craftsman, even if it is a grain of dust on the module”. And it is so in reality, industrial standard is known to everyone, standard can all be set very high, but specific implementation strength is the key to product quality. We do have today’s “Suntech quality”, precisely due to our nearly stringent standards on product quality.
“This fully automatic production line is what I had wished to do since my beginning in 2016 at the module factory! Everything was ready except for what was crucial. Now, the crucial thing has arrived, and Suntech would embrace the era of the best production efficiency!”