There is no denying that turnarounds are essential to the stability of equipment’s life cycle. At the same time, they are often seen as complex processes that elevate risk and stress around the worksite. And while some may dread the idea of a turnaround, there are consulting services that exist to make them run smoothly, giving companies a competitive edge.
Turnarounds: A Necessary Evil
Turnarounds are, unfortunately, inescapable. Even so, they don’t need to be something that hurts a company, and, when done right, they can be a significant positive. The cost, complicated nature, and long-natured process of turnarounds are why people dislike them. It’s also important to realize that companies need to deal with environmental and safety issues while turnarounds are taking place.
Add in the fact that over 50% of turnarounds experience significant delays, and 82% of turnarounds don’t satisfy performance requirements, and you have a recipe for disaster.
While turnarounds are looked at with a negative lens, there are positives to focus on as well. First and foremost is that turnarounds offer an excellent chance for employees to learn and repair equipment that they may not get to interact with for years at a time. This kind of opportunity shouldn’t be taken for granted as turnarounds can be used to document helpful information for the future.
The main challenges of a turnaround rear their head in the planning, preparation, and execution stages. During the planning and preparation stages, historical data missing or current datasets being heavily based on assumptions will only lead to more complications down the line. And with the various sources that data comes from, it can be hard to verify the validity of the data, to begin with. After all, if two groups are working with two different data sets, someone will have to normalize the data, or things will only worsen when it comes time for execution.
Speaking of the execution stage, it’s possible to be dealing with inexperienced team members, unknown conditions, and poor communications at any step of the process. While more experienced guiding hands can help inexperienced team members, it can be complicated to deal with unknown conditions and poor communications without the right team to facilitate those roadblocks.
That’s where a trusted consulting service comes in.
The Benefits of a Well-Run Turnaround
To understand how a turnaround can benefit a business beyond the apparent repairs and maintenance, we need to look at each step of the process.
First, there are the planning and preparation stages. It’s important to note that no amount of control during any turnaround is an adequate replacement for planning and preparation. Those pre-work stages and data gathering are crucial to proper execution as they’ll give everyone on-site the appropriate information needed to do their job well.
Working with a turnaround consulting service is like working with a fresh set of eyes. They’ll be able to come into the environment and ask questions that others might see as essential or unnecessary. Even so, those questions may reveal critical information that would otherwise go unnoticed because everyone assumed the current data was correct. An experienced consulting service will include all parties involved in the turnaround, and they’ll begin asking questions early to align the project with current and clean data.
Speaking of data, consulting services are also helpful in streamlining data. If data sets come from logistics, safety, and environmental teams, they are likely different in various ways. A team like SITEX will synchronize the data from other groups and contractors, giving everyone a single source of information to work with at the start of a turnaround. Consultants will also make sure there are goals, and key performance indicators (KPIs) agreed upon during the preparation phase. These make sure everyone is on the same page regarding the purposes of the turnaround and what success is measured by.
Once the data is gathered and streamlined, the actual work begins. While you may have a team of turnaround engineers on-site, there are still several benefits a consulting service can provide. A turnaround consultant can get permits, zoning, and safety regulations ready before any work is started during the execution phase. This will not only keep the team safe, but it will mitigate legal risk as well.
Modern consultants will also make sure mobile devices are commonplace during the execution phase, as everyone should have access to a centralized data location. This will keep data accessible at all times for any questions that arise during the work. Consultants will also check the ongoing work against the agreed-upon KPIs made during the preparation phase, making the review stage of the turnaround more straightforward.
Steps to Take for your Next Turnaround
Understanding common challenges and how a turnaround consultant can help alleviate those issues makes it time to think about the next steps. Turnaround consultants act as a guiding hand to make sure the work is done smoothly and safely. Most consultants, including SITEX, are full-service companies that offer a wide range of solutions and services. So if anything goes wrong during the turnaround and needs immediate attention, SITEX can address it.
When thinking about the next steps, look over previous turnarounds and see how they have been completed in terms of success rates and timeliness. If most turnarounds have been delayed or don’t meet performance expectations, it may be time to research turnaround consulting services.
When researching consultants, get a feel for which team works best with your current employees and make sure they’ve done the work before. Make sure their values align with your own and that they prioritize employee safety and turnaround success. The proper turnaround consulting service will work alongside your current teams and contractors to make sure the process is streamlined, downtime is minimized, and risk is mitigated.
Contact SITEX today and speak to a turnaround expert to better understand how our turnaround consulting services can minimize turnaround downtime and reduce worksite risk.