Who was watching the Singapore Grand Prix?

Jacquelyn Koh
Not all eyes were on the race track when Formula 1Ⓡ drivers and fans arrived in Singapore in September. Each year a team of volunteers from SNC-Lavalin’s Faithful+Gould business work with the Grand Prix’s promoters to keep the event running smoothly so their attention is focused further afield.

Jacquelyn Koh helps race promoter, Singapore GP Pte Ltd (Singapore GP), to keep the Grand Prix on track. She is a project coordinator at Faithful+Gould, a member of the SNC-Lavalin Group, and the company that provides engineering project management services for the event. Every September, Jacquelyn runs an engineering help desk on the city’s Circuit Park. ‘I work with a dedicated team to manage the response to all of the technical challenges that arise in the public spaces during this major event,’ she says. ‘We are the point of contact for facility managers and service providers throughout the weekend. That is, the people who look after facilities in the circuit park, such as the food and drink establishments, medical posts and tents, grandstands and hospitality facilities.’

They cover all minor incidents from electrical faults or plumbing issues to requests for targeted touch ups and repairs to facilities and additional furniture. Working in shifts of five operators at any one time with an additional 6th operator on Friday, with Jacquelyn and an assistant handling any escalation issues that may arise, the team handles up to 500 requests for assistance over four days. All calls are recorded and the details are forwarded via a messaging service to the project team members who are stationed throughout the Park. From there, these technical specialists and contract package managers turned field agents, will work directly with the caller to address the problem that’s been raised.

‘This is a high profile international event and we need to be able to respond quickly to ensure a minor technical glitch doesn’t impact on spectators’ experience,’ explains Jacquelyn. ‘It can be incredibly busy but we work with Singapore GP to ensure we have a robust system in place to manage most emerging issues.’

Jacquelyn has been part of the team bringing the promoter’s vision for the Grand Prix to fruition for the past decade. In that time, she says the job has become easier. ‘When I first started working on this event, we used a spreadsheet to record the repairs, replacements and new orders for equipment and furniture,’ she recalls. ‘Now we have an online inventory system that underpins our approach to the 700 or so facilities on the site.’

The system enables Jacquelyn and the wider team to see every facility in the Circuit Park in detail. They’ll know, for example, where a marquee is located and that it contains six chairs, one table, two power points and a fan. It enables them to act with certainty when a problem occurs.

Jacquelyn has overseen the development of the system and, together with Singapore GP, reflected on lessons learned to improve it year on year. She has also worked closely with other members of the Faithful+Gould team to ensure that the information she has is consistent with the data being used throughout the planning process. This is particularly important as the event evolves. ‘Each year, the promoters of the Singapore Grand Prix aim to enhance the experience for visitors to the Park,’ Jacquelyn explains. ‘As a result, the way the Park is designed and the facilities are constructed changes. Our service has to be able to keep up. That’s why it’s important for us to record every detail. The entire team - the people constructing, maintaining and even dismantling the facilities - need to know exactly where the temporary facilities and buildings are and what they contain.’

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