Capable and scalable partner – with the right attitude
The roots of collaboration between Kalmar and Protacon go back to 2006, a time when a strong automation trend of port operations started. Protacon has provided Kalmar with automation systems for container cranes and other harbour equipment in the port of Hamburg, for example. Protacon’s strong competence in the automation sector combined with Siemens’ technologies gave the initial impulse for joint projects. From automation and control system deliveries collaboration was soon expanded to also comprise more extensive database and software entities for ports.
– Today, our partnership approach is one where Protacon’s specialists work as part of our internal team. Long-term collaboration is visible in the depth of content and a shared attitude for pushing things forward. We receive insight and ideas for development from Protacon’s people, since they are well informed of our processes, explains Timo Lehto, head of information system development at Kalmar.
– We expect our partners to have certain precise knowhow and we value flexibility of resources. This is exactly what Protacon offers to us. They have a sufficient number of experienced and highly-skilled personnel who know our systems and get down to work quickly and with the right attitude.
Reliable partner for international commissioning projects
It is reasonable that people who have designed the system are also involved in its introduction. Many of Protacon’s employees have participated in Kalmar’s commissioning projects abroad.
– We have only a few partners who we can send directly to the customer interface in this way. This is undoubtedly partly related to Protacon’s large pool of skilled employees and their willingness to travel. The scalability of Protacon’s project organisation is well revealed by this, too, Timo Lehto says.
– In large port projects, we have received good feedback from the project manager regarding the attitude of Protacon’s people, their ability to see the big picture and willingness to contribute in all possible ways to put things right. They do not focus on their own corner, but provide versatile help and assistance.
Partnership is the most fruitful when both parties learn and can develop side by side. According to Mr. Lehto, the guiding principle of collaboration is that learning takes place.
– The closer the cooperation is and the more people are made to discuss practical matters, the wider the skills will spread in both directions. Protacon’s employees have actively given their ideas and contributions to the development of product lifecycle, for example.
– This will be even more important to us later on. In the future, ports will also shift from automation towards autonomous systems. New technologies and possibilities for utilising data collection, for example, are being created all the time. We hope that our partnership with Protacon will also go in this direction.
We have only a few partners who we can send directly to the customer interface in this way. This is undoubtedly partly related to Protacon’s large pool of skilled employees and their willingness to travel. The scalability of Protacon’s project organisation is well revealed by this, too.
Timo Lehto, Head of Information System Development,