HAMR3: Personnel turnover in the advanced machinery world (and beyond)

On December 10, 2014, NTS Mechatronics Shanghai organized the 3rd Holland Advanced Machinery Rotation platform meeting. At NTS in the Shanghai Waigaoqiao Free Trade Zone, industry leaders from 5 Advanced Machinery builders, as well as representatives from Schouten China and the Netherlands Office for Science and Technology, came together to discuss employee turnover rates.

Employee turnover is generally seen as a management challenge, and a strong indicator of competitiveness on the job market. The attending advanced machinery firms are facing ca. 20 to 40% turnover of workshop floor employees, with one outlier having a turnover rate of only 6%.

During two rounds of presentations (from NTS and Schouten), attendees discussed the benefits of using financial vs. personal development/cultural incentives as a strategy to keep employees that add value to the company. Financial incentives, such as higher salaries and systematic over-hour schemes, have generally been addressed as the first solution for high turnover rates.

Schouten recognizes a fitting company culture as an important factor for personnel retention. The lower turnover rates at NTS among personnel that has worked for more than 3 years at NTS may indeed confirm Schouten’s view. Furthermore, in other companies, a number of former employees who left because of financial motivations have already made clear their desire to return, in spite of a lower expected income.

Strong Dutch bonding in e-commerce

The Netherlands Office of Science and Technology (NOST) in Shanghai and several Dutch E-commerce entrepreneurs set up an e-commerce platform. The first meeting took place on December 10, 2014, at the Consulate-General in Shanghai.

A vivid brainstorm hour during the e-commerce platform gathering

The aim of this first meeting was to openly discuss the need, goals, activities and structure of the platform. While details still have to be filled in, the platform members appreciated the benefits of working within a platform. The added value of actively communicating members, who share information, should be translated in a stronger position on the Dutch e-commerce sector in China. By stimulating technology development among the team members, mutual support in dealing with logistic and policy hurdles, and welcoming valuable new platform members, a stronger position is readily achieved.

The Netherlands Office for Science and Technology (NOST) will act as a moderator within the platform. We are very pleased with the dedication among the platform members and are looking forward to a strong collaboration as well as upcoming activities, such as webinars, seminars and exhibitions.




New LED technology from Zhejiang

Light-emitting diodes (LED) are rapidly replacing traditional light-bulbs in many applications. Organic LED (OLED) is an efficient LED technology, as it supplies the light only when needed and in the color that is desired. However, the production of OLED is expensive. It requires a deposition of small molecules in vacuum, and the application on large surfaces is limited.

Solution-processed LEDs, with quantum dots as the generators of light, may be a cost-efficient and widely applicable alternative. A group of scientists from Zhejiang university has recently made a breakthrough contribution to this new technology. They report a quantum-dot based LED with a performance that equals the best vacuum-deposited OLED, such as a 100.000 hours lifetime.

The scientists have generated a lot of excitement in the community (for instance, their nature paper obtained over 30.000 views in the first month after publication) and expect that the results will initiate the development of a new generation of LED. Such light sources should find applications in displays and other solid-state lighting technologies.