Drakken is an E&I and automation solutions provider operating all over the globe, giving us an edge over companies which typically have experience limited to a single state, province or country. Our project portfolio includes projects completed across five continents, ranging from the simple to the highly complex.
This varied experience provides us with a continually-updated skill set that many other system integrators don’t have. Here are some of the ways in which global experience benefits projects.
Established global supply chains
In a previous article, we explained the advantages of maintaining a global supply chain, and its importance in project execution across multiple countries.
Having an established global supply chain allows Drakken to quickly source a broad range of equipment, materials and more, in compliance with the project requirements. We also have on-the-ground knowledge about the state of the local industry in various regions and how it affects lead times. We can thus source the most cost-effective solutions.
We have an in-depth understanding of international certifications, such as ATEX, CE, IEC, CSA, UL, etc. and the associated price and delivery implications.
Logistics, costs, schedules and risks
Knowledge of global and regional supply chains has proved an invaluable skill set in organizing the movement of goods, materials and manpower across the world.
When it comes to mobilizing personnel, we have a real-time understanding of COVID-19 regulations, which is a momentous but worthwhile undertaking. This has paved the way for smooth personnel travel between countries, regions, or even cities.
In normal times, we pride ourselves in understanding worldwide visa requirements and constraints, which allows us to select the right team to successfully execute each project.
This includes factoring in the time and cost impact of transport (materials or personnel), security, duty and tax implications, and assessing and mitigating any risk associated with logistics.
Legal and tax requirements for operating in foreign countries
For companies that limit their operations to a specific territory, the prospect of dealing with another country’s taxation and legal systems could be daunting. Fortunately for our clients, Drakken has developed an in-depth knowledge of the local legal and regulatory requirements for operating in various regions, particularly in North America, MENA, Africa and Asia.
An example would be withholding tax, which is the most common variable when operating in a foreign country. In order to provide accurate pricing, it is critical to know when it is and isn’t applied.
It is also important to us to understand In Country Value (ICV) requirements and we proudly engage fully to support local communities wherever we operate.
As part of our commitment to supporting local communities, Drakken utilizes local resources wherever possible, thereby increasing the In Country Value (ICV) for the country in question – as well as cost savings on the project.
Utilizing local knowledge to source materials and resources has proved to be a significant influence in mitigating risk across our projects. For example, if a shortfall in a particular material occurs, a solution can quickly be found without causing delays or cost overruns. We make an effort to stay informed of the local price points, in order to stay competitive with local companies, while still providing the highest level of quality and service.
Understanding strengths and weaknesses of local workforces
Our knowledge of local supply chains, logistics, costs and legal regulations, Drakken is in a good position to assess the strengths and weaknesses of workforces in a given project location.
We work to leverage strengths, maintaining a strong working relationship with local contractors and utilizing our own supervisors to eliminate any shortcomings in technical experience. Knowing when to support a project with our own personnel can be the deciding factor between failure and success. The combination of a local workforce and Drakken personnel allows us to reach a cost-effective solution, knowing that we will not have overruns due to last minute personnel changes. Like everything we do, the collaboration with the local labour pool is unique and tailored to the specific needs of every project.
In previous articles, we focused on the value we place on the multinational teams that work on our projects across the world. Because global approach is the norm for Drakken, we have gained years of experience in understanding cultural differences, mitigating the risk of conflict in doing so.
This proactive approach is crucial in building a positive and efficient project team. Knowing how to best communicate cross-cultural expectations – be it within the project organizational structure, on-site workforce, or client relationships – improves overall collaboration and trust, and contributes significantly to the success of our projects.
How to operate in high-risk or volatile areas
For all projects, we are committed to upholding standards of quality, health and safety, but sometimes we operate in areas that are high-risk or volatile. Drakken’s multi-continent experience in North and South America, MENA, Africa and Asia helps us assess the level of protection required to ensure personnel safety and the security of our sites.
The safety of our personnel is paramount, and in addition, knowing what kind of security measures will be required means security costs are accurately accounted for. This ensures the smooth running of the project, despite any unexpected issues.
A global range of standards
Working from international standards and codes to tailor the delivery of each project to its unique situation and requirements, Drakken’s experience includes codes from a range of countries across the world. We are experienced in international codes such as IEC, CEC, NEC, IEEE, as well as regional standards such as GOST, ATEX, BS, API, and dozens of country- and client-specific codes and specifications.
To conclude, Drakken’s global project experience and understanding of the potential advantages, impacts and risks associated with various regions allows us to create tailored solutions. With accurate and up-to-date costing, scheduling and resource allocation, we are committed to finding better ways for the world to execute projects, delivering on time, every time, regardless of location.