INSIGHTS

Virtual Roundtable Discussion: COVID-19 Responses & Effects

Virtual Roundtable Discussion: COVID-19 Responses & Effects 

April 15, 2020

 

Spec Engineering’s Virtual Roundtable Discussion had a total of 26 attendees, which included people from 15 different companies. As a whole, this group brought to the table a variety of perspectives from different industries including manufacturing, engineering, recruiting, marketing, finance, IT, and food and beverage.

Highlights of key effects and responses to COVID-19:

  • Working from home challenges
    • Working while family/roommate is home
    • Technology issues
    • Keeping a routine
  • Communication is key
    • Daily calls and check in’s with team
  • Keeping the team bonded
    • Virtual happy hours
      • Kahoot & Jack Box games
      • Microsoft Teams or Zoom
    • Daily virtual team lunches
  • Manufacturing updates
    • Segregation of different operation lines into other buildings
    • Weekly statistical insight to stay on top of priorities
    • Hyper sanitation methods that will be carried out after pandemic: Daily huddles explaining the symptoms, asking about any possible symptoms of employees and families
  • Reviewing common touchpoints in a workplace setting
    • Clock in/out technology went from fingerprints to badges
    • Snack vending machines closed and implementation of more sanitary design snack dispensing system
  • Looking into UV sanitation technology
  • Having the proper PPE
    • Face shields and barrier usage in public places

 

 

Chat Conversation/Responses

 

Areas of struggle/changes:

  • Communication
    • Collaboration on project design
    • Communicating with teams of different sizes
    • Keeping the team aligned
    • Building personal relationships

 

How have you adapted to changes/what are these changes?

  • Supporting manufacturing and distributing from afar
  • Consistent communication, project transparency, accountability
  • Being there as full support
  • Have already been working from home, so no interruption in productivity, but deal flow/collaboration has declined
  • Onsite or traveling has been shutdown
  • We have enjoyed using Zoom – having face to face virtual communication.
  • Daily directional team calls
  • Business as usual…customers moving forward with project installs. Other vendors traveling by car instead of air. The trades are still very active as is evident at Lowe’s, Home Depot, etc.

 

 

What has your company done to continue to work safely and effectively?

  • Hyper sanitation protocols to keep our plant/dist environment as safe as possible has been a challenge we are addressing. PPE, Air, Common Touch Area, disinfection (UV, Ozone, Silve Ions…)
  • From a corporate communication standpoint, it sounds like “empathy and transparency” is a really valuable messaging strategy both internally and customer-facing. Everyone will remember how companies/brands respond during these times.
  • Better recognition and companywide communication are positive outcomes
  • Agreed, saw people rise to the occasion.
  • At Spec, our marketing team now does daily meetings, and it’s definitely improved overall communication and effectiveness.

 

Positives/Wins:

  • People are becoming more independent, instead of asking a co-worker or manager how to do something.
  • More use of technology and tools that we have struggled to implement in the past have become a necessity.
  • “Old dogs” have had to learn new tricks… Technology
  • People stepping up to the challenge
  • Wanting to be a part of the solution and solving new problems at hand
  • More recognition of the team
  • Bettering communication across all departments
  • Becoming more “prepared” overall
  • Organization improvement
  • “We are all in this together” attitude
  • Makes us more aware of our weaknesses
  • Learning more about technology and what works for you/your company

Spec Engineering is a Gray company.

Spec is a process engineering company, focused on best-in-class solutions for customers in the food, grain, minerals, chemicals, and pharma industries. In 2019, Spec became part of the Gray family of brands. As a Gray company, we continue to offer comprehensive expertise, catered to your scope, schedule, and budget.