Connecting customers and service staff

Since Wendy Lee started working at SCHOTTEL Far East in 2005, the subsidiary has grown from a modest office with a workshop to a professionally equipped site with an 80-tonne lifting capacity and a spare parts warehouse. Here she describes how this growth affected her career

Gone are the days when the entire company corresponded via a single email address, alongside the fax machine and telex. Unlike in 2005, Service Administrator Wendy Lee now needs two monitors to coordinate spare parts and fitters.

In the office, she is like a coordinating interface between customer and service staff; the one who creates quotations and invoices for spare parts, prepares and follows up on service assignments in detail, procures spare parts from the German head office, and manages the travel arrangements of the service engineers. “The sales territory of SCHOTTEL Far East and the subsidiary in Australia covers all of Southeast Asia and the neighbouring areas in East Asia, Australasia and Oceania,” 51-year-old Wendy explains. “Over the past year, our customers have increasingly resorted to remote support. Still, our 15 service engineers are on the road a lot.” In a common year before the pandemic, she supervised around 300 assignments.


A lot of tasks are similar, but there is no standard routine: “There are many situations where assistance is required and I need to make the necessary arrangements quickly. For example, scheduling our mechanics on short notice to solve problems on site and get the vessels back into operation. The short billing windows afterwards are also critical, especially if the work had to be extended unexpectedly,” says Wendy Lee, pointing out potentially stressful situations. The current pandemic has made travel preparations a lot more challenging. This has also affected her personally, as travelling is one of her hobbies. 

If time allows, she also supports other departments. “SCHOTTEL Far East can only work as a close-knit team. As service staff I am part of the team and assist where necessary—be it in the warehouse or in accounting. And so, every completed job, small or large, is a collective achievement of which I am proud.” Over the years, she has seen the team grow from 16 to 29 employees, yet she can still recognize a family spirit that is further promoted at team events. 

Before being employed at SCHOTTEL, Wendy Lee worked in administration for a local trading company. With the change and the growth of the company, her qualifications and responsibilities have increased, too. Today, she benefits from the comprehensive view of the company she acquired throughout the various stages of her career: “I started as a receptionist and office clerk, became a spare parts salesperson and finally a service administrator. The skills required in each role varied and I always had to adapt quickly. In all the years at SCHOTTEL, I have made many and valuable experiences.” 

In her current position, she also benefits from the knowledge gained from being in interpersonal contact with others: “We want our customers to be satisfied with the overall quality of products and services. This also means that we adapt to their different personalities and their various demands. Thanks to the experience acquired throughout my career, I can apply this skill in my current job.”

Even though her workplace is the office, from time to time her job does take her to a harbour: “At one of our customers, PSA Marine Pte Ltd, I inspected a vessel with SCHOTTEL propulsion systems, which was a nice change from my normal desk job. The PSA Capella is an impressive tug in harbour service. We looked at the whole ship; the engine room and bridge with the controls were of particular interest, of course. These visits help me to understand the work of our service technicians better when they make sure that SCHOTTEL equipment is maintained in working order.” 


Personally, the mother of a 17-year-old daughter constantly strives to increase her education level and to stay fit and healthy in order to face any future challenges in her career positively: “I am very proud to play my part in the growth and success of SCHOTTEL Far East.” And she laughingly adds: “As far as I am concerned, I am happy to continue this course.”


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