Andy Board – Bowers & Wilkins 总经理 – General Manager, Bowers & Wilkins, Zhuhai
DB: 您为何选择音频行业？什么激发了您对这个行业的兴趣？ Why the audio business? What inspired your interest in this particular industry?
For me personally, I joined the company when I was 17 years old, and like any young lad I was into all kinds of music. And what was very interesting was learning how to actually build a loudspeaker because when I joined, I was an operator. Seeing then how much detail went into a loudspeaker to make it produce sound was fascinating.
DB: 您在加入公司前有这种兴趣吗？ Did you have this sort of interest before joining the company?
No I didn’t. I just played a lot of loud music in my room, and it sounded awful. And Bowers & Wilkins was a very local company in my area. So at that time I had a lot of school friends that worked in the company.
DB: 工作中你最喜欢的部分是什么？What’s your favourite part of the job?
I feel like I’m giving back to the local community because we’re quite a big employer. As a general manager, I’m in control of what happens in that factory – so I’m a bigger part of helping the people there.
DB: 您现在有多少员工？ How many staff do you have right now?
Currently, 348, to be precise.
DB: 最近你把你的业务转移到了珠海一个新的工厂。其中您有遇到什么困难吗？ Recently you transferred your operations to a new factory in Zhuhai. What difficulties did you encounter when making this move?
The main difficulty there was the time frame that we gave ourselves. Because we were already manufacturing in one plant, so we had to redecorate i.e. totally fit out a new factory and be up and running so we didn’t miss any production deadlines in only 6 months.
DB: 您的工作人员如何应对这一举动？ How did your staff respond to the move?
Andy: 他们非常雀跃。那时候我们虽然是Bowers & Wilkins，但却没有真正地像Bowers & Wilkins那样运营。所以一旦我们搬到这个新工厂，我们就有了新的设施：新的装修，更加光亮，工作环境更加开放。更重要的是，我们真正地成为了Bowers＆Wilkins。
They were over the moon. At that time we were still Bowers & Wilkins but not operating as Bowers & Wilkins. So once we moved to the new factory we had new premises: newly decorated and brighter, with a more open work environment. And more importantly, we became Bowers & Wilkins.
DB: 你有流失很多员工吗？Do you have a large staff turnover?
No, we don’t, we have very low turnover. We have lower than 5%, and the average I believe is 8%.
DB: 贵公司决定不采取多元化地占领音频市场和分散风险，其是否让您困扰？ Your company’s decision not to diversify beyond the audio market and spread risk, does it concern you?
Well let’s say for 50 years we’ve stayed focused on audio, and let’s just wait and see what the next 2 years bring us.
DB: 你在Bowers＆Wilkins工作了多年，有什么具体原因吗？You have spent much of your career with Bowers & Wilkins. Is there a specific reason for this?
I guess the reason why I’ve stayed with them for so long is that my role has changed so often. I’ve grown as the business has grown, and I’ve been given plenty of opportunities to do so. So it’s almost like having a new job every few years. That’s a huge contributing factor, and the other reason is that in the old times, we were more like a family oriented company. We were not a massive global organisation. We were a small factory and everyone knew each other, so we were like family. I look forward to my next 28 years at Bowers & Wilkins.
DB: 伊娃自动化公司收购贵公司是否以任何方式影响了您的目标？您公司的目标是否改变？Has Eva Automation’s takeover of your company influenced your objectives in any way? Have your company’s goals changed?
Andy: 是有很大变化。以前我们只专注于音频，我们是音频行业的第一。但限于很多因素，我们的增长有限。伊娃所购买的不仅仅是新技术，更多地是一个新的前景，更新换代的驱动器等 – 但是我们的核心价值观仍然是一样的 – 质量第一。 Yeah, there’s massive changes.
Previously we were only audio, and we were #1 in the audio industry. But we had limited growth, due to a lot of factors. What Eva have bought is not just new technology but also a fresh outlook, renewed drive etc – however our core values remain the same – quality comes first.
DB: 如何确保中国工厂的质量控制标准与英国同行的质量控制标准相符？ How do you ensure the quality control standards in the Chinese plant match that of its UK counterparts?
Andy: 我们的质量非常严格，从进口质量检验到成品检验。测试每个单个驱动单元，并对每个单个成品进行测试。不仅仅是音频，还有视觉因素。最近我们被授予了ISO 9001。这是制造商可以认可的最高质量奖。还有人为的错误，总是可以控制的，当建立扬声器需有大量劳动力时，劳动强度很大，所以人们随时与产品进行互动。所以我们鼓励员工之间的心态，其中每一个人都被认为是质量控制检查员，每个员工检查上一个工作等等。
We are very stringent on our quality all the way from Incoming Quality Inspection to Finished Product Inspection. Every single drive unit is tested, and every single finished product is tested. Not just audio but also visual. Recently we have been awarded the ISO 9001. That is the highest quality award that a manufacturer can be accredited with. There’s still human error, that can always come into play, and when building a loudspeaker there’s a lot of labour, it’s very labour intense. So people are interacting with the product at all times. So we encourage a mentality amongst our employees in which every one of them is considered a quality control inspector, with each employee checking the previous one’s work and so on.
DB: 珠海工厂目前的目标是什么？ What is the current goal for the Zhuhai plant?
The upcoming plan here for Zhuhai is to expand by at least 50%, that’s total units and number of people within the next 2 years. We’re going to be very busy. This week we’ve just started mass production of a new product range. That will give us incremental business by about 20%. And there’s another new product range following that within the next 2 weeks. Next year our roadmap is huge, so we’ve got a lot of challenges coming up, but also a lot of growth opportunities.
DB: B＆W公司是否参与当地社区？ Does B&W as a company get involved with the local community?
Andy: 当然。 B＆W开始在英国，我们非常受到当地社区的欢迎，并且一直参与当地的活动。主要是音乐活动，这也是我们所擅长的。所以在中国，我们参与“一起来”这个音乐慈善盛事，我们总是参与其中，无论是通过奖品，赞助等。我们将永远努力回馈到我们所在的社区。
Of course. B&W started in the UK, and we were very popular with our local community, and always got involved in local events. Predominantly music, of course, and that’s not so we get a return, but it’s what we’re good at. So here in China, we have this event called “Come Together”, which is a music event. We always get involved in that, whether it be through prizes, sponsorship etc. We will always try to give back to the community we are within.