Songa Offshore Client Profile
Founded in 2005, Songa Offshore is a drilling contractor with offices in Oslo, Stavanger, Houston, Singapore and Perth. The company's headquarters is in Cyprus and its travel program is managed by FCm Cyprus and overseen by FCm's global sales division.
Songa Offshore require 24/7 travel management services that are capable of dealing with challenges that exist when people work in remote locations. Its travel program includes international travel for crew members that work on oilrigs as well as travel for executive employees.
FCm's rapid response to a medical emergency on an oilrig en-route to North East Russia showed how local knowledge and global reach enabled the safest possible rescue operation for a traveller in need.
On Saturday 22 May 2010, FCm's global sales director based in Sydney, Rob Dell, received a phone call from Poly Thedotou, FCm's key account manager in Cyprus. Poly, who was in London at the time, had been contacted by client Songa Offshore. One of Songa Offshore's oilrig crew members had fallen seriously ill and needed emergency medical treatment. The man was working on Songa Offshore's drill rig Songa Mercur, which was travelling between Singapore and Pusan in South Korea. Due to the seriousness of the crew member's condition, the rig had to be diverted to the closest port in Taiwan. From here the crew member was airlifted by helicopter and taken to the nearest medical facility.
Songa Offshore requested FCm's assistance with the patient and his carer once they had landed. They also sought FCm's help to repatriate the two crew members back to Australia.
Rob immediately called FCm's general manager in Taiwan, Nancy Yang, to ask if she could help with the logistics in Taiwan. In just under two hours, many phone calls and text messages later, Rob and Nancy had developed a two phased emergency plan. The first phase involved coordinating medical treatment for the affected crew member and accommodation for his accompanying carer, following their arrival in Hualien. The second phase included the repatriation of both crew members.
To execute the first phase of the emergency plan FCm:
- Organised and booked hotel accommodation for the carer accompanying the patient
- Alerted the hospital of the patient's arrival and organised for hospital placement and care for the patient
- Organised an English speaking contact to meet the two crew members when the helicopter arrived in Hualien. FCm's contact provided local currency to the two crew members for food and incidentals and ensured the patient was being looked after by the hospital.
The affected crew member spent five days in the local hospital in Hualien during which time FCm kept in close contact with Songa Offshore, the patient and the hospital. FCm also assisted with language and other cultural issues and monitored the progress and treatment of the patient. Once the patient had stabilised, FCm arranged the repatriation of the carer and the patient separately.
To execute the second phase of the emergency plan FCm:
- Coordinated all travel arrangements including transfers from the hospital to the local airport
- Organised an FCm contact to meet the two crew members in Taipei
- Monitored both the patient and his carer during the long transit time at Taipei International Airport
- Closely monitored the flight from Taipei via Singapore to Australia to ensure it departed on time, because of the patient's condition.
The patient arrived in Melbourne seven days later on Friday 28 May.
How did our global coverage make it possible?
Although the repatriation involved FCm people from four different global regions, the connectivity of the network and quality of relationships FCm fosters as part of its company culture, ensured the emergency action plan could be carried out in Taipei efficiently and expertly.
According to Songa Offshore, three service attributes defined this intervention:
Immediacy of response despite disparate locations
Songa Offshore's contact was FCm Cyprus, while their rig was located in Taiwan Initial contact by Songa Offshore was FCm Cyprus and Australia.
Seamless service backed up with in-depth local knowledge
FCm was able to provide expert advice and back up to the client because the case was handled by FCm's local teams, even though the client and the particular office in question had no previous arrangements, financial or contractual. Songa Offshore was covered by the umbrella agreement held between FCm's business and theirs.
Flexibility of service
FCm responded and went beyond the strict confines of its agreement with Songa Offshore. This is testament to FCm's 'can do' attitude where they approach problems with solutions rather than focusing on stumbling blocks.
Songa Offshore's response
"Ms Yang and her crew have stepped in admirably and have shown that FCm can be relied on for global coverage that is not only geographical but also goes beyond mere travel. I intend to bring this matter up internally as I believe it shows a way in which we can rely on FCm's services more in the future. Thanks again for your efforts in helping us through the emergency."
Human Resources Supervisor,
Songa Management Limited