onTRACC: How long have you been in India?
Vincent Oliver: Three years - to lead the WCM drive at the 11 breweries in India, strategically located across this large country. After establishing good manufacturing basics, we developed a phased approach starting with TRACC at three sites this year.
onTRACC: Which beers does SABMiller produce in India?
Vincent Oliver: We brew Hayward’s 5000, Knock Out, Foster’s Lager, Royal Challenge and recently Indus Pride, a new all-malt beer. We import Peroni and have new exciting brands and packs planned for the near future.
onTRACC: What is India like as a market and country?
Vincent Oliver: As a beer market there’s lots of opportunity for development and growth. We’ve committed significant investments in plants, technology and people. Yet India presents a difficult trading landscape for a number of reasons, including restrictive legislation, logistics and social issues.
India has a relatively low per capita beer consumption (a little over one litre per capita per annum), with spirits being the alcoholic beverage of choice. There are changes in the market but these have been slower than initially expected. Meanwhile we’re improving our manufacturing practices, beer quality and access to our consumer in strategic areas.
India is a large, intriguing and extremely diverse country in many ways, with big differences in language, religion and local governments, to name a few. Its states operate more like independent countries. Our current M Way focus is on three breweries: CBL, HBL and PALS - each in a different state, with differences in local legislation, consumer preferences and primary languages (Marathi, Telugu and Hindi). Training workbooks for operators have been translated into these three languages.
onTRACC: What are India’s people like to work with?
Vincent Oliver: Very rewarding. They are intelligent, hardworking, numerate and respectful. There’s a strong desire to learn and implement new practices quickly. The potential in India is amazing.
onTRACC: Can you give us an idea of a before and after TRACC/ M Way? A timeline?
Vincent Oliver: Initially possibly only ‘output’ or volume-driven, we’re now becoming process- and systems-driven to achieve better performance in a stable and sustainable manner. 2008 was about creating awareness, especially the need for balance between outputs and processes. Initially I worked with all the sites to develop systems, such as safety, maintenance and training on a rather ad hoc basis. I would return to a brewery and think, “Why are we back at square one?”
2009 was about traction. We focused on five campus breweries as centres of excellence, but with limited success as it was difficult to transfer and implement learnings due to differences in technology, existing work practices and site culture.
We realised that we needed an integrative improvement system. We decided on TRACC to provide us with a way to build internal capability, a system to replicate best practice and learnings, allowing us to create sustainable results.
We launched TRACC at three breweries in specific pilot areas with roll-out planned for early 2011. My role has shifted from developing practices to implementing, aligned with SABMiller’s vision of leading change. In each of our India breweries, it has taken time for people to see that we’re serious about implementing and sustaining our M Way foundation practices using TRACC.
We’re pleased with the new implementation and capability so far. We’ve improved teamwork. There’s greater ownership of tasks and processes and increased decision-making at various levels. We’re now focused on sustained excellence in India, alignment, standardisation and consistency, as well as on processes and quality for profitable growth.
onTRACC: Why did you choose TRACC?
Vincent Oliver: Several reasons: prior experience with TRACC and knowing that it’s a tried-and-tested system, alignment with SABMiller’s GEMs (Global Evaluation of Manufacturing), the easy on-line access to TRACC materials, which enables multi-site implementation, the clear implementation plan and guides, and of course TRACC’s strength in local capability-building, which allows us to improve and expand with sustainability.
onTRACC: What lies ahead for SABMiller India?
Vincent Oliver: SABMiller India’s technical vision is to have three breweries rated in the SABMiller world top 20 and all our breweries in the world top 50 by 2013. Part of this journey is extending TRACC to other sites, building new plants and a relentless drive for improved quality. With continued social change in India, less restrictive market opportunities, and some exciting product innovation, there are exciting times ahead for SABMiller India.
*Taken from onTRACC Volume 1, 2011