From Engineering to Production -- Siam Global Engineering Leverages Kintone for Streamlined Operations and Future Growth

From Engineering to Production -- Siam Global Engineering Leverages Kintone for Streamlined Operations and Future Growth

Siam Global Engineering Co., Ltd.

An industry leader in steel fabrication with operation is Asian & Oceanian region.

Siam Global Engineering is an engineering and construction services company headquartered in Thailand that operates across Asia, Australia, and New Zealand. Since its establishment in 1996, the company has been diversifying its businesses into a one-stop shop providing a wide range of services from engineering and fabrication to onsite construction and fit-out. These services are delivered by a team of over 600 employees, including engineers and onsite staff. John Lightbody, International Business Development Manager at Siam Global Engineering, describes the company as “an EPC Contractor who executes engineering, procurement, fabrication of steel components, and on-site constructions activities into various industries”. 

Over recent years, Siam Global Engineering has been progressively globalizing its business operations, focusing heavily on the Asia - Pacific region - market. While approximately 80% of its current market is linked to Thailand, the company is actively expanding into Australia, New Zealand, and other Asian neighboring countries. 

COVID Reveals Needs for Effective Information Sharing

When everybody was working remotely during the COVID pandemic, John’s colleagues struggled to share their client engagement activities and progress across the whole team. While the company had a central server for internal information sharing, it could not provide systematic, visible, and real-time monitoring and tracking.

As each individual team member randomly updated Excel spreadsheets on the server, nobody had updated information of which records have changed. We simply couldn’t know whether the information on those spreadsheets was accurate and up to date”, John explained.

Such efficient, real-time information sharing directly leads to fast-tracked business processes. For example, an approval process used to take 2-3 days as it involved locating all relevant paper documents, circulating them to all necessary departments for review, and passing the approval to each team needing it.

Why Kintone?

After researching and evaluating various solutions, Siam Global Engineering started its journey by trialling Kintone and HubSpot within two internal departments. Having found benefits from both, the company is currently rolling them out to more departments to see how they can better fit into its own business structure through customization.

While there are a large number of engineering software in the market offering similar functionality to Kintone, the vast majority of them are not as customizable as we need.”  Said John.

Making it Effortless to Keep Everyone Updated 

By introducing Kintone, the production departments now have a single system to share complete information including client database, workshops and other client engagements, progress on each case, and so much more. With Kintone, all of these can be updated instantaneously as all information needed is in one place and easy for everyone to identify. Every time someone creates a record or makes an update, it automatically sends out notifications to all team members so everyone knows what everyone else is doing. ”When many of us are busy with back-to-back meetings nowadays, this turns out to be especially helpful as we can stay up to date without having to make phone calls or talk in person”, John emphasized.

Traceability from Engineering to Production

Having led the introduction and trial of Kintone from day one, John is currently working on internal training and further system improvement based on user feedback. With the successful trial in production, he has already taken the next step to expand Kintone into more business functions. As a one-stop engineering and construction services provider, Siam Global Engineering’s daily business operation involves engineering design, fabrication, processing, delivery and onsite installation of thousands of construction materials and final assemblies. Tracing all of them is a challenging task, let alone effective management of each phase they go through.  

This is where Kintone came into play to demonstrate its powerful capabilities. It was extremely difficult to trace down each piece of material before introducing a single system like Kintone, as each department kept its own records on different databases or even paper-based documents “Using Kintone, all five departments responsible for production phases from processing, cutting, welding raw materials to fitting, painting, packing and shipping final assemblies record their works and quality inspections on each single item and shares up-to-date information of their locations and status”, John explained.

Future Steps 

Leveraging the great customization potential of Kintone solutions, John and his team are now elaborating the system to further assist with on-site construction and tendering.  

For construction, John is aiming to expand the application of Kintone to this area in the next 12-18 months to provide the construction team with real-time visibility through intuitive user interfaces. “A huge difference between production and construction onsite is that the latter is live and fast-moving”, said John “Kintone enabled our construction team to easily monitor construction progress, conduct quality control, and sign-off multiple installation works onsite, while keep tracking of the actual material and labor costs as they go”. Furthermore, Kintone’s simple and user-friendly interface completely removed John’s concern that “old school” people used to paper-based documentation or simple spreadsheets and reluctant to adopt new IT systems.  

For estimating, John expects that Kintone solution can be flexibly customized to assist each step involved in the entire tendering process, including new algorithms to estimate labor time, costs, and progress for better forecasting. So far, the estimating team has been managing three separate databases in Excel spreadsheet: the material cost sheet, the labor cost sheet for installation, and a third database to combine them to obtain the final cost of each project. The process of importing data from the former to the latter is not only time-consuming but also causes fluctuations as it is conducted in separate instances each time. By replacing them with a single system, Kintone can improve both efficiency and data quality.   

Moving forward, the same benefits that Kintone provides can be proved valuable in all departments of Siam Global Engineering. ”With everyone working on the same system, we expect further improved efficiency and enhanced collaboration for future growth”, John concluded. 

Kintone Product Introduction Video