EPC Project Management Getting Things Done: Efficient Project Management in EPC

Author / Editor: Deepak Makhijani Consultant / Dominik Stephan

The word ‘Project’ can be used to describe an endeavor in which a number of tasks are performed in order to accomplish a particular objective. Projects are usually undertaken by an organization to achieve business objectives such as engineering, mechanical / construction services or research for new product development. This article talks about Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) Projects in India and how the organizations are executing these projects using modern techniques and effective management.

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A well managed EPC Projects in Oil and Gas industry results in higher efficiency and better productivity
A well managed EPC Projects in Oil and Gas industry results in higher efficiency and better productivity
(Picture: Honeywell Process Solutions)

In today’s scenario, there is a great focus on managing projects in short time period within budgets. Managing a project is quite different from managing a steady state organization. Construction project has a distinct life cycle – a beginning and an end - a steady state organization runs continuously. Effective project management requires a clear concept and presence of an efficient project group within the organization. The most important ingredients of project management are compatibility in interpersonal relations and clarity in mutual understanding and communication.

Individuals involved in a project must clearly know what their responsibilities are and also what is expected from them. When seamlessly integrated, the collective output of the people within an organization in the form of expertise, experience and working systems, vastly add to the efficiency of a project.

From Ideas to Actual Business

Transforming the business need into a physical set requires the effectiveness of a series of processes, tools and techniques, and most of all, skills and experience. Together these culminate into what can be called World Class Project Management (WCPM). This requirement starts with the early identification of opportunities and business drivers and evolves into planning and execution. The first step in the process is to define the situation and determine the desired outcome.

Once the situation is defined, the team leader sets the roles and responsibilities of all the participants. Each team member has an established role and is held accountable for execution, while following rules and regulations. This takes much of the guesswork out of executing the plan and establishes efficient and effective method to manage a project regardless of the time constraints.

Modelling and Engineering Software

Different applications of 3D modeling & visualization, integrated IT systems, SAP R/3 project module and modular fabrication in EPC project management are given below: 3D modeling and visualization The detailed engineering of the project requires cutting-edge plant simulation and design systems. Typical 3D model software such as Plant Design Management System (PDMS) enable one to design the plant taking into account the bill of material of the components and orientation of the equipment to prevent fouling or inadequacy of space to install the equipment in the plant area.

FIG 1: Project management schedule
FIG 1: Project management schedule
(Picture: Deepak Makhijani)

A typical 3D model is shown in figure 1. This reduces cost of re-engineering and modification costs as the orientation of the equipment in the available plot area can be visualized online and remedial action can be taken at the time of equipment fabrication.

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