Equipo ctodos

Escondida is globally recognized for its operational excellence

Escondida, through its Cathodes General Management, received the “Shingo Prize Award,” the highest prize granted by the Utah State University’s Shingo Institute, United States, which globally recognises the organisations that stand out for their operational excellence system.

In this way, Escondida became the first BHP operation at a global level to have received the prize and the first private mining company in Chile to have been certified.

It has been a long journey for the company that started in 2020, when the Electrowinning area undertook the challenge, where more than 1,200 workers, between direct workers and collaborators, live according to the principles and practices of our BOS Operating System on a daily basis, which are based on the Shingo model.

In order to obtain this recognition, the Cathodes General Management was evaluated by a group of examiners from the Shingo Institute, who strictly reviewed how the work teams implement the BHP’s Operating System, BOS, on a daily basis, which, thanks to its 14 practices, allows us to achieve our purpose “Bringing people and resources together to build a better world.”

Jim Whittaker, President of Escondida, highlighted that “it is an honour for our asset to receive this award, which represents the work of thousands of people who strive to achieve continuous improvement. This reinforces the fact that the workers are the true protagonists in our operation, who contribute to achieving operational excellence in various areas, such as safety, productivity and culture, thus projecting ourselves into the future in a sustainable manner. The evaluation of our Cathodes area and the subsequent winning of the award acknowledge this way of working and inspire us to continue along this path.”

On her part Olga Alfaro, Escondida’s Cathodes General Manager stated that “our operating system based on the Shingo principles, has given us the tools to humbly lead and to respect each one of the persons that are part of Cathodes. The Shingo Prize inspires us to keep on building together the company that we love and invites us to keep on improving every day, always having, at the core of what we do, the safety and the BOS principles, which will allow us to continue projecting ourselves into the next decades to be able to lead from Chile the copper production that the world needs.

One of the workers that participated in this process was the plant operator, Jorge Ramírez, who said that “we feel highly honoured to receive this prize, not only for the category and relevance of Shingo but also for the cultural changes we have achieved.”

On his part, his colleague Yoni Alberca expressed that “this prize reflects the work of each and every one of us. Initially, it seemed like an impossible dream, though with our BOS Operating System’s help and our leaders’ trust, we managed to break the paradigm of what is impossible."