Words by Candy Tee
Hong Wun Pte Ltd is a locally-established wholesaler and distributor of seafood in Singapore. Supplying quality seafood to clients in the F&B sector over the last 20 years, Hong Wun has since developed robust relationships with reputable clients such as esteemed Japanese restaurants, hotels, as well as local supermarkets.
Redesigning the Workflow For Workers
In the past years, Hong Wun had been using conventional delivery trucks to deliver frozen products to their clients islandwide. To ensure that their frozen products were delivered optimally fresh, workers were required to report to work in the wee hours of the morning on each delivery day. They first had to retrieve the products from the freezers, then manually load the products onto the lorry. The to-and-fro loading of goods was both physically-demanding and time-consuming; Not to mention that at Hong Wun, this laborious chore was mainly performed by older workers due to manpower constraints. In the face of such strenuous workflow, these older workers were often at risk for injuries.
With the assistance of NTUC’s Employment and Employability Institute (e2i)’s WorkPro Job Redesigning Scheme, Hong Wun installed an Insulated Box with Refrigeration System on their ten-foot delivery truck in 2020. The Scheme is a collaborative effort in recent years between e2i and companies, to remodel companies’ workflow and job processes to be easier, safer and smarter for older workers, as well as increase overall productivity for the companies.
Powered by the vehicle’s engine, the Refrigeration System is able to lower the temperatures in the truck to designated freezing temperatures. The Insulated Box is made of the insulation material Polyurethane, which is then able to preserve the designated temperature in the truck for an extended amount of time even when the refrigeration system is not running.
Reaping Rewarding Results
With the implementation of the Insulated Box with Refrigeration System on their truck, workers no longer need to retrieve the products daily from the freezer and reload onto the lorry before delivery. Instead, workers can now load the truck for consecutive-day deliveries. Products can also sometimes be loaded directly onto the insulated truck when they arrive from the source if they are due to be delivered in subsequent days.
The impact of these results is remarkable—workers enjoy reduced working hours as they do not have to reach work at extreme hours each morning to load for delivery. The company also presented a decline in injury reports and medical leave rates. Hong Wun profited from an overall productivity gain and has hence rewarded three older workers with salary increments.
The Future of Operations at Hong Wun
Evidenced by how a simple job-redesigning can benefit the company greatly, Hong Wun will continue to review areas that they can further incorporate technological improvements to their operations so as to progress their productivity and efficiency to the next level.