Spotlight on: our QA/QC Capabilities in China

As we enter the Year of the Dragon, we look at our experience and track record connecting Contract QA/QC specialists to pioneering offshore wind projects in China.
Jacket foundations for an offshore wind project in Taiwan are loaded onto a vessel following fabrication.
Jacket foundations for an offshore wind project in Taiwan are loaded onto a vessel for installation. Photo: Iwan Tri Prasetyo

As inflation and supply chain disruptions impact offshore wind projects in markets around the world, China’s industrial base and extensive manufacturing capability is coming into its own.

The world’s leading offshore wind developers are increasingly choosing Chinese suppliers to build components like jacket foundations, XXL monopiles and towers.

And because we’re trusted by those developers and OEMs to supply experienced personnel worldwide, Taylor Hopkinson and Brunel’s close relationships are creating a multitude of new opportunities for Quality Assurance/Quality Control (QA/QC) specialists on CV-enhancing, career-boosting projects.

The role of the offshore wind QA/QC Specialist

QA/QC specialists play a crucial role in ensuring the quality, safety, and compliance of offshore wind projects, and are key to getting steel in the water. They ensure the quality and longevity of foundations, towers, and other balance of plant that makes up an offshore wind project. Key responsibilities for our QA/QC specialists employed in China include:

Developing and implementing QA/QC plans. Taylor Hopkinson QA/QC inspectors use their expertise to devise comprehensive plans and procedures to maintain quality standards throughout the manufacturing of the offshore wind components.

Health and safety compliance. Our specialists monitor HSE practices on-site during fabrication and ensure safety protocols are adhered to.

Conducting audits and inspections. Our people perform regular audits of contractors, subcontractors and fabrication sites, conducting inspections to verify compliance with relevant standards and specifications.

Preparing and maintaining quality documentation. QA/QC specialists maintain accurate records of inspections, tests, and quality-related activities: essential for compliance and traceability.

Reviewing inspection and test plans. QA/QC specialists review detailed inspection and test plans submitted by contractors, ensuring they align with project requirements and industry standards.

Investigating and resolving quality issues. When quality issues arise, QA/QC specialists investigate the root causes and work with project teams to resolve them quickly.

Taylor Hopkinson offshore wind QAQC specialists at work in the UAE.

Our QA/QC Track Record in China

Since partnering in 2021, the combination of Taylor Hopkinson’s world-leading renewables expertise, and Brunel’s global reach and approach to quality and compliance, has made us the go-to personnel supplier for tier-one offshore wind developers, owner/operators and OEMs.

We’ve been connecting contractors to projects in China for over 12 years, and we’ve delivered over 600 since 2022 alone. Together, Taylor Hopkinson and Brunel have 10 entities throughout China, Hong Kong and Taiwan and over 400 staff supporting clients and projects at present. Our unique set-up enables us to provide 100% compliant local support at China’s key fabrication locations.

From Dalian in the north to Zhuhai in the south, our extensive footprint within the country means that nobody is better placed to deliver the QA/QC surveillance and inspection services that are vital to delivering your offshore wind project on time and within budget.

“More and more of the fabrication for offshore wind projects in Europe, Asia-Pacific and the USA is being delivered in China,” says Chris Quinn, a Managing Consultant at Taylor Hopkinson who leads our QA/QC activities. “We’re trusted by the world leaders to supply experienced personnel for QA/QC surveillance within China, because we have that unique combination of deep industry knowledge and track record, and the global mobility and compliance expertise to seamlessly get people working in China.”

Enabling Seamless Global Mobility

The complexities of mobilising expatriate QA/QC specialists in China can be challenging, both for organisations and contractors. Contractors must adapt to a maze of Z-Visas, Foreigner Work Permit Notification Letters, Work Residence Permits, Foreign Resident Identity Cards, complex local tax rules, and new systems like WeChat and Alipay. Even something as simple as working overtime can be subject to rules around compensation and rest days.

“Our clients and specialists trust us to deliver our services compliantly, safely and stress-free to everyone involved in mobilising to China,” says Teppo Helles, a Business Manager at Brunel who supports our Chinese clients. “I’m proud of our reputation and of our global teams, who work tirelessly to support thousands of offshore wind contractors who support pioneering projects in China every year while mastering local regulations to ensure 100% compliant service.”

Our offshore wind QA/QC case studies

In 2022, we were awarded a scope of service contract by an international offshore wind joint venture to perform QA/QC surveillance services for all works carried out at yards and facilities in China. We’ve mobilised over 50 contractors specialising in Site Management, Yard Inspection and Vendor Inspection to yards in Shandong and Guangdong provinces.

As part of this scope, we’re also providing our market-leading global mobility and compliant payroll and employment solutions within China – managing visas, work permits, taxation, and a range of tailored in-country support services to ensure the smooth transition of personnel and a hassle-free service to our client.

Also that year, we were appointed sole supplier of QA/QC surveillance services for all major components by a major offshore wind joint venture headquartered in Madrid. This included XXL monopile foundations, IAC/export cables, OSS and WTGs being manufactured at fabrication yards across China, Europe, the Middle East and the US.

As well as delivering the entire site-based fabrication team, our scope of works in China included turnkey global mobility services. We coordinated the issuing of all necessary visas, managed payroll, ensured all taxes were paid, arranged meet and greet sessions with contractors, and booked accommodation and daily transfers.

By choosing Taylor Hopkinson, our client benefits from our deep offshore wind expertise, our outstanding relationships with local suppliers, and our extensive footprint within China – all underpinned by the unwavering approach to compliance shared by our colleagues at Brunel.

Building solid foundations in China
Seeking QA/QC specialists in China for your offshore wind projects? Contact our experts to discuss our turnkey recruitment and global mobility services.
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Jacket foundations on a ship to be installed at an offshore wind farm