As our business gradually starts up again, Onal Oz, Director of the ÏDKIDS Liaison office in Dhaka, answered some written questions about the impact of the lockdown. He also sent us a short video message.
– Hi Onal, could you explain what the ÏDKIDS Bangladesh Liaison office does? What are its key missions in normal times?
The ÏDKIDS Bangladesh office represents Okaïdi locally and is responsible for all production, from order placement to shipment. We employ around 30 people and our key missions are to:
Our motto? To deliver the right product at the right quality, at the right price, at the right time and at the right quantity with pride.
– How is the team doing right now?
Our office has been closed since 26 March 2020 after the Bangladesh Government declared a nationwide shutdown due to Covid-19. Since then, we have also been working from home just like millions of other people around the world.
I have to say that I am proud of our Dhaka team for their dedication, responsibility and flexibility. Their dedication, because of their hard work even if it is difficult to work from home. Their responsibility, because they are following all health and safety advice to stay safe at home during this time. And their flexibility, because they have shown that they can easily adjust to extraordinary circumstances and do whatever needs to be done!
Luckily, none of our team members or their families have been infected. We have numerous Hangout meetings during the day both internally with the Dhaka team as well as with the Roubaix headquarter team to keep business uninterrupted.
– What is the key issue during the confinement?
The key issue during the confinement is to draw up precise forecasts and plan ahead. We are going through a pandemic, and nobody knows how or when it will end… The Dhaka team makes multiple production plans (scenarios) to be ready for any situation, whether the factories re-start production at the end April or after the Eid holiday, at full or half capacity, etc. This way, we will be better prepared to embrace the situation.
A good plan with multiple options is the key to our success.
– What main challenge are you facing?
Being away from our factories is a big challenge today. None of our team members are allowed to visit factories for the time being, and we cannot monitor production. Also, the lack of face-to-face communication both internally with our team and externally with our suppliers is the main challenge I would say.
– And how are our suppliers managing?
Most of our suppliers have started working again since 26 April, exactly one month after the shutdown was announced on 26 March. They have all adopted very strict health and safety measures which we, as the Liaison office, also monitor and report closely.
– Do you continue to work together? How?
Yes, we are still working together with the utmost care and after ensuring that they have all taken the necessary safety measures!
– How are the teams that produce for us being protected?
Factories are open today at 30% to 50% capacity. In this way, they are trying to maintain social distancing between the workers. For example, they run only every other line. So by organizing the production floor by one line on and one off, line workers can stay three to four metres apart. Also, they check workers’ temperatures every morning before they enter the factory, as well as each time they come in and out for their lunch breaks and in the evening before they leave. There is hand sanitizer available in every corner and workers are encouraged to use them on an hourly basis. Masks are also worn at all times.
– Did you set up special support during this period?
– Our social project manager has raised a conservative fund to which we, the entire Dhaka team, as well as some Roubaix team members, have contributed and we have supplied a substantial amount of food to the homeless and unemployed. (Editor’s note: with the lockdown, residents are not allowed to leave the slums to buy food or go to work).
You can still financially support the food aid set up by the ÏDKIDS Foundation 😉 !
For every €1 donated, the foundation will offer a matching €1 donation: