The Salvo Process* (TSP) is a 160 page guide to ‘strategic assets, lifecycle value optimization.’ TSP reports findings of the EU-funded Salvo project
whose partners hail from London Underground, Scottish Water, Sasol
Synfuels and others. TSP’s author John Woodhouse of the eponymous Partnership
(TWPL) started his career with Shell and Kvaerner Engineering which
means that there is ample material of interest to oil and gas.
you are wondering what exactly is meant by an ‘asset management,’ the
ISO definition of ‘the realization of value from an asset’ may not help
much. The strategic assets in question include large offshore oil and
gas developments, refineries and such. The overarching aim of the
process is to help keep plants running without accidents, as long and
profitably as possible.
Salvo was a follow-on to an earlier EU project, the Macro
(maintenance, cost/risk optimization) project (which involved
Halliburton and Norske Shell) which produced notably the Asset
performance tools (APT), a software package that was acquired by TWPL
in 2008. TSP is largely an introduction to the TSP toolset and
Woodhouse is an experienced and opinionated
author with a dim view of enterprise asset management (EAM) software
and engineering data standards. ‘The whole subject of data, information
and knowledge management is a mess for many organizations.’ ‘Some very
expensive mistakes are made in the over-ambition and under-delivery of
‘solutions’ to the problem.’ The idea of an accurate, generic data
standard is ‘naïve and counter productive.’
So how are
Salvo and the APT different from classic EAM? The answer is that the
approach combines hard data collection (where reasonable) with ‘softer’
inputs, obtained by ‘asking the right people the right questions.’ In
some cases, ‘structured speculation and expert judgment can compensate
for a lack of hard data.’
It turns out that ‘80% of asset
management decisions’ can be taken based on information that is already
available inside the organization. The APT toolset is a way of
gathering and structuring such a combination of hard and soft
information into more familiar representations of key performance
indicators and return on investment.
There are a few examples
of how the software and methodology are used. One shows how Salvo
triggered ‘lateral thinking and risk mitigation options’ and allowed an
aging control system to outlive its apparent useful life. Elsewhere,
major and minor maintenance activity was re-jigged ‘with significant
reductions in costs, downtime and risk.’
Notwithstanding the above, TSP would be greatly improved if it provided a decent case history of how the tools have been used on a major project. This would probably have made the book twice as long, but more than twice as useful. Having said that, as it is, TSP is a good read and a valuable contribution to the subject.
* The SALVO Process, ISBN 978-0-9563934-7-0.
This article originally appeared in Oil IT Journal 2014 Issue # 10.
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