state of the industry
Nicole George and Asma Motlani discuss Eaton's response to COVID-19.

Eaton subject matter experts Nicole George, product manager, pumping variable frequency drives and Asma Motlani, product manager, NEMA power controls, industrial controls division, answered questions submitted by Pumps & Systems on the state of the industry entering 2021.

Nicole George

Can you tell me if the pandemic has impacted your operations at all and if so, how?

"Eaton made the important decision to maintain operations during the COVID-19 crisis because our products are critical to our global infrastructure.

"In addition to providing power management solutions, we also looked for other ways to help our communities during this crisis. We know the ability to respond rapidly and deliver the highest level of care possible is essential in the global fight against the pandemic. We also know that U.S. medical workers on the frontline need immediate access to personal protective equipment (PPE) amidst current shortages. In response to these challenges, we’ve applied our additive manufacturing expertise to help quickly fill shortfalls of critical supplies during the crisis. We developed face shields that are comfortable and can be sanitized and used again and again.

"We also developed a four-inch touchless tool so that people can avoid contact with surfaces and slow the spread of the novel coronavirus. The device helps opens doors, twist faucets and push buttons without touching potentially contaminated surfaces."

What are the positives you’re looking at going into 2021?

"The challenges, both economic and personal, that our industry and society have faced in 2020 have added stress, uncertainty and urgency to our businesses. My hope is that the New Year tames some of the uncertainty and financial stress our economy is facing, opening up bandwidth and the appetite to tackle the infrastructure updates and industry innovation we began early in 2020." 

What do you expect the challenges to look like for your business next year?

"Unfortunately, there is no magic crystal ball to illuminate the passage as we navigate through the challenges. I suspect the 2021 challenges will be similar to challenges our industry has faced in previous years: pressure to realize cost efficiencies, execute projects on time and on budget, maintaining flexibility to respond to rapid changes in supply and demand, all while balancing product and solution innovation as we continue to deliver solutions that exceed customer expectations." 

Asma Motlani

Can you tell me if the pandemic has impacted your operations at all and if so, how?

"To help fulfill critical needs for frontline workers during this crisis, we activated additive manufacturing and a healthy dose of innovation to compress product development timelines and rapidly deliver solutions. Eaton is committed to helping the communities where we live and work by taking steps to aid in the fight against COVID-19 and leveraging our expertise and capabilities to do so. Whether it’s donating much-needed supplies to healthcare providers or providing our power management expertise across critical industries. We remain dedicated to ensuring always-on power for essential electrical systems and data services and supporting healthcare capacity needs with on-time project construction. Also, our operations teams were very flexible early during the pandemic to ensure orders for necessary applications were expedited." 

What are the positives you’re looking at going into 2021?

"As we’re coming to the close of 2020, I’m looking forward to projects coming back to life!

"I expect we will have more customers looking to research and understand the long-term savings and benefits that come from some of our products; such as maintenance/replacement costs, efficiency of energy usage, and product life. I believe this will offer us the opportunity to further engage with and educate our customers. 

"Most of all, I’m looking forward to the challenge to think creatively to offer the best solutions to fit the ever-changing needs of the industry." 

What do you expect the challenges to look like for your business next year?

"Though we can’t be certain – I expect there will be a continued desire to improve machine learning and expand the Internet of Things (IoT). 

"I expect that we will see a demand for shorter lead times and quicker turnaround as projects push to make up for the time lost. 

"In general, I foresee a heavy need for agility/flexibility as the industry recovers."