When COVID-19 brought the world to a standstill in 2020, MATRIC had to make operational adjustments to accomplish tasks remotely and unite distributed teams. As a contract research and pilot plant operations company, MATRIC has always been closely engaged with clients and their facilities. We know that collaboration is an essential part of successful research. However, travel bans and company restrictions put traditional on-site collaboration to the test. MATRIC responded to these changes by developing innovative solutions and overcoming obstacles to meet clients’ needs.
Implementing Video Conferencing Solutions
In one example, MATRIC set up video conferencing capabilities in a new pilot plant so that the client team could participate in every detail of the pre-startup safety review, including the walkthrough. This allowed the client and MATRIC teams to work together to ensure the plant was safe, ready to operate and that the equipment setup would provide the necessary results. The client was extremely impressed by how well the review was coordinated. They commented that this live video solution was likely the way to increase team engagement in the future while cutting down on travel costs.
Accessing Real-Time Data
For another client, MATRIC relied upon the use of our data historian and real-time, secure access to remote process data during operational campaigns. MATRIC worked with the client to make several around-the-clock pilot plant runs. The client and MATRIC staff set up 24/7 coverage, including an always-on video conference, to allow close monitoring and adjustments of the process. Despite being in two different countries and unable to travel, both teams were able to simultaneously examine the data and the project has continued to make excellent progress. This client explained that they never believed a surrogate pilot plant they could not visit would work so well, but they have been very excited by the results.
MATRIC is beginning to see some clients return to traditional on-site visits while some remain under strict travel restrictions. We are enjoying the opportunity to interface with some clients in person again, but if the need for remote work continues, MATRIC will be there for support. MATRIC will continue to use technology and innovative thinking to ensure that there are no missed collaboration opportunities as we deliver quality results.
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