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Reducing Planning Effort and Time

The planners produced excellent estimates for each shutdown. They could easily reuse many of them. There is a strong case for producing a reference database, so that could be used readily. Related isometric drawings were available electronically, but were currently accessed each time from a different database. Storing these in a linked fashion to the estimates would help speed planning work. Obviously drawing revision numbers had to be verified each time to ensure they were current.

The refinery initiated an upgrade of their IT systems and computerizing of their archive to resolve these problems.

Contracts Administration

Prior to this shutdown, contracts worth about US$3m had been awarded. Of this, lump sum (LS) contracts accounted for 63% and unit rate (UR) for 37% of the total. The main UR contracts related to scaffolding, insulation, and cleaning work. A significant proportion of the scaffolding and insulation work could have been awarded as LS contracts. The advantage of LS contracts is that they need much less administration effort. For example, the UR insulation contracts required 220 documents to be filled in, vetted, and approved. These required a total of 375 calculation sheets, based on a similar number of quantity surveys. Had these been LS contracts, about 120-140 supervisor- hours would have been reduced. They could spend this time actually supervising work instead of shuffling paper.

The refinery now uses LS contracts wherever possible. They also combine contracts like scaffolding, insulation, painting, and NDT. One of the contractors is the co-ordinator of all these works.

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