In today’s process and power industries, sustained long term reliability of facilities is a key to profitability and competitiveness.
The cost of unreliability, which includes health, safety and environmental (HSE) incidents, is difficult for even healthy companies to endure, and with investment in the right proactive measures, can be avoided. Risk-based work selection (RBWS) is a work process that prioritizes and optimizes turnaround and maintenance work without sacrificing reliability.
RBWS uses risk to screen individual worklist items to ensure they are justified by either HSE risk reduction or Financial Benefit to Cost Analysis. Significant reductions in turnaround workscope typically result from this structured work process.
At the same time, the nature of the process is such that there are numerous additional benefits such as ‘sleeper’ risks not previously considered, minimizing discovery work, and helping with alignment of the cross-functional teams.
Inconsistent methods for screening turnaround and maintenance work can lead to missed opportunities for risk reduction and a poor return on investment (ROI). Becht’s RBWS method is a systematic and consistent approach to screen turnaround work lists using historical and industry performance data.
Becht’s Turnaround and Reliability Specialists have reviewed turnaround work scopes for over 20 years. Our average work list optimization is $3 million in reduced turnaround spending per review with a reduction of 24% of low ROI work list items.
The RBWS process is data driven, ensures consistency of decision making and results in a risk-optimized worklist. The process includes consideration of risk management, reliability and conservation of financial resources. The results are fully documented for leadership review and future turnaround planning. Figure 1 shows the RBWS work process.
Becht has deeply experienced facilitators with strong Risk-base Inspection, Turnaround planning and Facilitation backgrounds .
Questions that drive the RBWS justification process include (but are not limited to):
• Can the work be done cost effectively on-stream rather than during the turnaround?
• Does the Risk of deferral meet the HSE Threshold?
• Is there a clear justification for the work?
• Is the scope and cost well-defined?
• Is the cost for the doing the work meet the client’s benefit-to-cost ratio threshold (this consideration only applies when HSE risk is below threshold)
• Will the work eliminate a bad actor?
RBWS is a process which is not limited to fixed equipment but covers all equipment classes.
Becht’s approach to RBWS is to combine an SME knowledge based approach with the right tools for consistency, documentation, and ease of facilitation.
Use of the right software tool saves time and improves the results of the RBWS review. Our RBWS process uses the proprietary web-based software tool, BechtRBWS, to achieve consistent and efficient facilitation of cross-functional meetings, store the worklist data, and document decision making and results.
Documentation of the rationale allows the leadership team to understand the ‘whys’ of the outcome, develops consistency between disciplines and sites, and provides a roadmap for future turnaround planning.
The information necessary to conduct an RBWS should already exist.
The challenge is digging the information out of desk drawers, databases, and Excel spreadsheets, and organizing it for review during the RBWS. No other tool in the refinery has the structure and required fields to capture the specific subset of data needed for the RBWS. RBWS assessments are for a very specific timeframe; one turnaround cycle, usually 4-7 years. The software will have this timeframe built into it.
Documentation – An RBWS session is only as good as the documentation. Being transparent about the team’s thought process and recommendations enables leadership to make informed decisions on what is “in” or “out” of a turnaround and why. Proper documentation helps eliminate recycle before and during the TA and can also be used as the starting point for future turnarounds. A dedicated tool preserves the data and results of the RBWS.
A dedicated software tool should lessen the burden of data gathering for RBWS. Well defined data fields, along with examples help guide teams during the data acquisition phase. We recommend that teams new to RBWS should have training on the process and the data that they are required to gather. Setting clear expectorations for the data to include in workscope submittals will help minimize rework and help communicate the expectation that work items will be scrutinized and require justification.
RBWS requires input from the entire turnaround team with several members participating in a session at any given time.
Therefore; being efficient is critical to a successful RBWS. The RBWS tool should ease the data entry, facilitation, and risk calculations done during a session, minimizing the downtime.
Toggling between screens and scrolling back and forth, takes time and can be distracting and confusing. An ideal tool will have a single screen that is the focus during the session.
That screen will present the data that was pre-loaded along with fields that capture the discussion during the session and show the risk assessment results.
Sharing information across a site or from site to site can add a lot of value for improved workflow, “lessons learned”, benchmarking, and to leverage work products from a past TA for a future TA.
An RBWS tool should enable this by being accessible. Web-based tools that can be logged into from anywhere have a distinct advantage over tools that are loaded onto a single computer.
A software tool should have reporting capability built-in so it can roll up results that show the items reviewed, deferred, or recommended to be in/out of the TA. Most software have standard report templates but having the ability for customized reports is a beneficial feature. An example of a report that our clients like to see is the Benefit to Cost Graph, which plots each discretionary item in terms of Cost versus Financial Risk Mitigated (i.e. benefit)
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