Last fall, Pratt & Whitney celebrated the first flight of Airbus' A320neo, powered by PurePower® PW1100G-JM engines. One group of Commercial Engines employees who worked very closely with Airbus in achieving this milestone was the P&W Toulouse office.
Being fully integrated among the Airbus team gives these Pratt & Whitney employees unparalleled access in supporting the customer. Many of the employees have worked at the Toulouse office for five or more years, which in turn, helps evolve the customer's trust.
"We are the onsite face of Pratt & Whitney at Airbus, and they know each of us on a personal level and who to call for different subjects," said Charlie Coffen, customer and commercial manager, Airbus Programs, when asked to speak about the role of the Toulouse office team. "There is an established, mutual trust, and they know that we can work with our East Hartford colleagues to address their needs quickly and efficiently."
With many Pratt & Whitney employees working several years in the Toulouse office, such trust is enhanced by a shared communication protocol. "Since we speak their language and understand their social norms, Airbus can feel confident that any request will be understood and will be acted upon consistent with their expectation," Coffen explained.
Similarly, the PW1200G engine on-site team in Nagoya, Japan, is supporting the integration of the engine with the Mitsubishi Regional Jet (MRJ). For Mitsubishi Aircraft Corp., having an embedded team translates to saving time, resources and costs throughout the course of the aircraft's certification program through preparations for entry into service (EIS).
"From providing relevant technical expertise in real-time, troubleshooting emergent issues, and supporting flight test instrumentation, the team is a valuable partner for the customer," said Johnny Gamalo, general manager, PW1200 Programs, Nagoya On-Site, P&W.
Conversely, each embedded team provides benefits and learnings for Pratt & Whitney to incorporate in future strategies. Through working with new customers, the team can verify aircraft-level integration issues, thereby providing Pratt & Whitney with direct witness accounts. Furthermore, the on-site team monitors the aircraft schedule and progress, allowing for the ability to make faster, smarter decisions that best suits aircraft-level planning.
"Since the engine design is new, the team can validate the operation and performance of the propulsions systems installed on-wing to the customer aircraft and communicate new learnings to the relevant groups within Pratt & Whitney for further dissemination," Gamalo said.
Doing business in Japan has proven to be very different from the U.S. and Europe for Gamalo and his team due to the variance in customer expectations, thereby making an on-site team an invaluable resource for Pratt & Whitney.
"In-country staff members are key assets for an engine program's success since a relatively simple task in the U.S. can be challenging without an embedded team's support," Gamalo said. "Above all, Pratt & Whitney directly learns how to work with its customers through our dependable on-site support."
The PW1100G-JM and PW1200G teams are just two of the many embedded teams that provide on-site support to Pratt & Whitney's customers. Look for more stories on our on-site employees in the future.