Today marks the start of a new week in a world with very new ways of working. As we at the Airbus U.S. Manufacturing Facility move into this “new normal” for us, I want to take a moment to recognize and thank the amazing team in Mobile for their hard work in helping establish safe working procedures that will allow us to continue serving our customers, and fulfilling a very critical role in our local and national economy.
Team Mobile is demonstrating great flexibility, patience and support as we adapt to new shift patterns, schedules and processes to enhance social distancing. We are decreasing the number of people on site at any one time, keeping those on site separated as much as possible, and implementing enhanced cleaning between shifts. I also thank those team members who are working from home, as that creates its own challenges, but helps facilitate our social distancing efforts.
Everything we are doing is designed to keep Team Mobile, our families and our community safe and healthy. Leaders all over the world, including right here in Alabama, have emphasized the economic and social importance of businesses, and the need for people to work wherever it is safe to do so. Our CEO, Guillaume Faury, recently reminded us that – as a manufacturing company – we fulfill an important role in society: a driver of employment throughout the aerospace supply chain, a creator of expertise and tax revenues, and a provider of critical services to our customers and communities.
So long as we can do this safely, I’m convinced it’s our duty to fulfill that role, especially in this environment of economic challenges.
That is why we are continuing to build aircraft. Our service is much more than delivering an airplane. It’s about keeping our employees working, as well as the employees in those companies in our supply chain, and in turn the local businesses in their communities where they live and work. It’s about keeping our production lines operating – even if at reduced efficiency for a time – because it’s far faster (with fewer potential obstacles) to recover a slowed production system than one that has been stopped.
This is particularly true for a production system that is as complex as an aircraft manufacturing operation that relies on so many other companies to provide materials, components and tools. Continuing to build aircraft will mean a faster recovery for everyone when we emerge on the other side of this challenge. Our airline customers are facing a challenge like none they’ve seen, and we want to provide them what they need to recover when it’s time: safe, quality, cost-efficient aircraft.
Again, as long as we can do this while keeping employees and their families and community safe and healthy, we will do so.
I’m sure that we will see more changes in our ways of working as we continue to adapt and adopt best practices – and follow any updated guidelines set by health authorities – to ensure a safe and healthy work place. But I know Team Mobile will continue to rise to the challenge.
I’m proud of my Airbus colleagues and the important work we are doing together!