In most industries, shutdowns, turnarounds, and outages are almost inevitable. This is especially true in the oil, gas, and petrochemical industry that requires planned plant cessations as part of routine maintenance and refining of the plant. But unplanned downtime can lead to unnecessary costs and reduced productivity, impacting the bottom line of the industry significantly. That said, with the right project management strategies in place, even unexpected turnarounds can be turned into a competitive edge. Such strategies can help minimize the loss of productivity, improve turnaround time, and reduce maintenance costs associated with shutdown and turnaround activities.
Here are a few tips to help turn your plant’s shutdowns, turnarounds, and outages into more positive events for your bottom line:
Planning is key to success, and the same holds true for STO activities. The time and effort you invest in planning and executing the STO will not only yield better results for your plant but will also prevent negative events from derailing the project. Your STO plan should be comprehensive and detailed and consider everything that can go wrong during the execution — system failure, power outage, and other potential risks. Such a plan enables you to meet a situation more efficiently and carry STO practices safely and effectively. It’s worth noting that SAP shutdowns and turnarounds solutions play a critical role in STO planning and scoping stages.
Consider External Expertise
STOs are critical to any plant’s routine maintenance and refitting activities. They take place after every 4-5 years and require a large team to handle everything from the usual process to the unexpected. But more importantly, it requires expertise. Having a team of highly- skilled and experienced professionals for these events can ensure you a smooth and safe experience.
Most successful organizations hire an external team to help and support the internal team in planning, implementing, and executing STO practices to ensure that nothing goes off track. When it comes to choosing an external team for your plant’s STO, it’s best to look for the one that specialises in SAP shutdown and turnaround solutions and has considerable experience in the process.
Technology is another crucial part of an effective and successful STO. It enables project managers to utilize the previous data and findings in their future STO cycles to fail-proof their efforts. However, it’s not sufficient for a refinery to employ technology that only digitizes the data and company information. Instead, the technology should break down crucial data and ensure a successful transfer of that information and knowledge between the internal teams. If you are working with an external SAP shutdown and turnaround team, it should help the external team to have a better understanding of your past STO cycles.
While shutdowns, turnarounds, and outages are essential for a plant’s maintenance and refinement, they can also lead to loss of productivity and increased downtime. That is why it’s best to have a few fail-proof strategies, such as SAP shutdown and turnaround solutions, and others, in place to ensure a safe and efficient STO.
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