Plant redesign

Plant redesign

For plant redesign, a leading service provider depended heavily on its principal designer. This post describes a practical case of how this dependency has been reduced.

Request

Need

Sector
Materials

Chemicals

Design practice
Plant redesign

Practised to revamp (that is, extend or renovate) an existing plant

Advantage
Innovation

Revamp projects are a source of innovation for grassroots projects

Motivation
Reduce a key man risk

The principal designer is the expert, and others struggle to approach his level

Ambition
Learn faster how to redesign a plant

Since the required competencies are thought to be largely unique, hiring is not an option

Design performance

Number of issues
2

Based on performance indicators and status reports

Indicator
[Risk] Availability of well-performing designers

Status
Issue

Unit
Number of employees

Goal
3 or more

Reality
1

Indicator
[Risk] Time to onboard a designer

Status
Issue

Unit
Number of months

Goal
4 or less

Reality
9

Assessment

Focus

Area
Conceptual design for revamp

Here, the principal designer performs significantly better than other designers

Map
Top level

Partial knowledge map for plant redesign

Filter
Essential and scarce knowledge

Here lie the main reasons why the principal designer performs significantly better than others

Development objectives

Number of objectives
5

Based on performance issues and a knowledge analysis

Knowledge
[Strategy] Estimate required effort

Development objective
Extend

Type
Implicit

Character
Stable

Origin
Empirical

Occurrence
Unique

Knowledge
[Systems] Determine process flow

Development objective
Extend

Type
Implicit

Character
Stable

Origin
Empirical

Occurrence
Unique

Knowledge
[Systems] Utilize modelling tools

Development objective
Extend

Type
Explicit

Character
Stable

Origin
Empirical

Occurrence
Unique

Knowledge
[Skills] Appraise customer traits

Development objective
Extend

Type
Explicit

Character
Stable

Origin
Empirical

Occurrence
Unique

Knowledge
[Skills] Display commercial acumen

Development objective
Attract

Type
Tacit

Character
Stable

Origin
Innate

Occurrence
Not unique

Advice

Proposal

Number of proposed tasks
3

Based on an assessment

Task
Contract designers with a specific talent

Status
Proposal

Method
Interview candidates

Actor
Manager

Focus
Display commercial acumen

Task
Define how to do a specific design activity

Status
Proposal

Method
Interview principal designer

Actor
Knowledge engineer

Focus
• Estimate required effort
• Determine process flow

Task
Teach designing to revamp

Status
Proposal

Method
Train contracted designers

Actor
Principal designer

Focus
• Estimate required effort
• Determine process flow
• Utilize modelling tools
• Appraise customer traits

Performance Estimates

Number of estimates
2

Based on performance indicators and expected effects of task execution

Indicator
[Risk] Availability of well-performing designers

Status
Estimate

Unit
Number of employees

Goal
3 or more

Plan
3

Indicator
[Risk] Time to onboard a designer

Status
Estimate

Unit
Number of months

Goal
4 or less

Plan
3

Realization

Progress

Number of reports
3

Based on measures of task execution

Task
Contract designers with a specific talent

Status
Done ✓

Method
Interview candidates

Actor
Manager

Focus
Display commercial acumen

Task
Define how to do a specific design activity

Status
Done ✓

Method
Interview principal designer

Actor
Knowledge engineer

Focus
• Estimate required effort
• Determine process flow

Task
Teach designing to revamp

Status
Done ✓

Method
Train contracted designers

Actor
Principal designer

Focus
• Estimate required effort
• Determine process flow
• Utilize modelling tools
• Appraise customer traits

Performance effects

Number of reports
2

Based on performance indicators and measures of design performance

Indicator
[Risk] Availability of well-performing designers

Status
OK ✓

Unit
Number of employees

Goal
3 or more

Reality
3

Indicator
[Risk] Time to onboard a designer

Status
OK ✓

Unit
Number of months

Goal
4 or less

Reality
3