WE ARE GROWING Chris Edwards RESEARCH & DEVELOPMENT MELBOURNE Every time we change a process or procedure to make the product better, this is a step in the right direction. Every little step adds up to make a big difference and the software department has come a long way over the years. Jessica Pekin MARKETING MELBOURNE I am most proud of coordinating the start-to-end launch of the Serinus 60 (NO 2 gas analyser) in 2016. This was a wonderful project as I was able to engage with every department within Ecotech, as well as attend the official launch in Dubai. A WORLD OF EXPERIENCE David Logan RESEARCH & DEVELOPMENT MELBOURNE Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit. Experience is knowing not to use it in a fruit salad. ” During my 23 years at Ecotech, I have had many opportunities to travel and meet interesting people. Travel, however, comes with its highs and lows. In 1998, I travelled to Jakarta, Indonesia to conduct some training in conjunction with Kevin Dobson from the University of Queensland. I had previously been there to install a network of mobile monitoring stations. The training was to be performed at a place called Serpong, about an hour out from Jakarta. 1983 Ecotech commercialises its first data logger Kelly Hatton HUMAN RESOURCES MELBOURNE The first reveal of the Ecotech website at the communications session really crystallised the Ecotech vision for me and made me feel quite excited about what is possible for Ecotech. Another inspiring moment was when the website was revealed, and I heard Robert talk about the company and the history and how proud he is each time he drives into the carpark. This little snippet for me left a long lasting impression and still to this day puts a lump in my throat. The first week of training went well. During the second week however, political unrest was increasing and there was a growing number of demonstrations against the Suharto regime. The hotel we were staying at in Jakarta was opposite the Trisakti University, where a large demonstration was to take place. I got a feeling that something was going to happen that day when travelling out to work. I noticed a large number of soldiers travelling towards the university on their motorbikes, carrying heavy weapons. Sure enough, four students were shot by riot police that day, sparking a wave of riots across Indonesia. I remember trying to get back to Jakarta and continually being diverted. Eventually we had to stay with some friends of Kevin’s just out of town. It was a real shock watching the news that night on CNN to see riot police running down demonstrators and seeing my hotel in the background. The following day we continued our training as there was nothing else we could do. We couldn’t go anywhere. That night we tried again to get back to our hotel, only to be confronted by a wave of looters. I remember our driver turning the car around so quickly and returning to Serpong for the night. Eventually we got back to Jakarta after 3 days. The sight of burnt out cars, looted supermarkets and smashed up shopping centres was a tragic reminder of just how fragile this world really is. About 18 months later we returned to Jakarta and completed the training. It was so encouraging to see the positive spirit of the locals there. They showed great character in the face of adversity. Indonesia will always be a special place for me. ECOTECH : TOGETHER
Grant Kassell RESEARCH & DEVELOPMENT MELBOURNE Twenty-three years ago, I was just finishing my first year at university when I began my journey with Ecotech over the summer vacation. Back in 1993, with a staff of about 20 at head office, I quickly got to know everyone. Little did I know that 30 % of us would still be working together at Ecotech more than 20 years later. In that first year, I remember soldering eight chips with 40 pins each onto countless memory boards. It certainly improved my soldering skills. I still remember my first stuff up - using a router to cut a hole in a weatherproof box in the wrong place. During my second summer at Ecotech, a bug in our 9200 data logger caused every data logger in the field to go back to 1970-something. Ecotech’s sole programmer was overseas and out of contact (only one or two staff members had a mobile phone back in those days), so my time in Research & Development (R&D) at Ecotech began. I saw Ecotech grow from one building in Blackburn, to two, to three. Now there’s a story - we already had Unit 3, and when Unit 5 was up for auction in Blackburn, a few of us decided to take a look around with Robert Dal Sasso during the final inspection. It seemed to be the only building in the estate that wasn’t sinking at one end or the other. A few minutes later in the middle of the auction, Robert decided to buy R&D and Systems a new home, and began bidding. The Ecotech team was growing, but friendships extended beyond work hours. I fondly remember skiing trips, overnight hiking down at Wilsons Promontory, shooting each other at laser tag, then taking it up a notch to paint-ball. Image by: Grant Kassell A great aspect of being part of Ecotech is the opportunities that arise. I never had any great desire to travel the world, but I now treasure the experiences I’ve had in India, United States of America (USA), Switzerland, England, Spain, Austria, Cyprus, Sweden, Germany and the Netherlands, let alone around Australia. It can be hard work after sleep deprived flights, but it’s very rewarding to see things from the customer’s perspective and many friendships are formed. I’ve enjoyed many challenges in developing and improving our instruments and solutions. Not all have been successful, but there have been many proud moments with those that have. I know I’m not the only person enthused to know that our instruments are on their way to Antarctica, or operating well below freezing at 10,000 metres high flying through volcano emissions. The thrill of getting the first measurements from a new and complex instrument is a real driver. It’s great to be part of a team that continues to grow and learn; working with others who are also trying new things and striving to help our customers, and grow the business with whatever skills they have to offer. OUR FRIENDS ACROSS THE GLOBE SequoPro SPAIN Our story with Ecotech started only 9 years ago… In 2007, we were looking for an H 2 S (hydrogen sulphide) converter and just by chance we remembered we had seen the Ecotech mark in some air quality network in Spain. We wrote to Ecotech and immediately received a very friendly email in Spanish from Nicholas dal Sasso! This was the beginning of our business relationship. During the 2009 Ecotech Distributor Conference in Cyprus, we had the opportunity to meet Robert Dal Sasso, James Agius, Felicity Sharp and the rest of the big Ecotech family. From the beginning we were pleasantly surprised by Australians’ professional and friendly style of business. To be in the opposite part of the world has never been an obstacle for fluid communication, quick support and, in general, a very easy style of doing business. In 2013, after the launch of the Serinus series, the European Regulations didn’t accept the instruments unless they were tested by the German TUV [TUV are German organisations that work to validate the safety of products of all kinds to protect humans and the environment against hazards]. This meant much money, technical effort and time. But again we felt strong support from Ecotech and their craving to compete in the “Premier League” against historical / traditional manufacturers. Nowadays we are proud of distributing strong and precise instruments, with all the needed international certifications and, what is more important, with the valuable customer support that Ecotech offers us. 17
NSW TEAM ANTHONY KNOEPFLE TARAL MAD
Very efficient. Competitive pricing. The reminders, I’m so busy in my job that it’s so great to have a reminder to do something. It really helps me.
I’m very happy.
- Tim Cannon – Research and Development Manager; Pecan Engineering Pty Ltd