93% of STOs Are Late or
Over-budget. Why?

STOs Are Not Like Traditional Projects

All too often, STO (Shutdown, Turnaround, Outage) managers lack access to timely, reliable data which frequently resides in multiple, standalone and unconnected systems of record. They are forced to make time-sensitive decisions based on intuition and limited information.
Furthermore, STOs are not traditional projects and cannot be successfully managed using typical project management tools and techniques. They need a holistic approach suited to high-VUCA (Volatile, Uncertain, Complex & Ambiguous) environments.

The Root Cause: High VUCA

The identification of VUCA environments originated in military operations and industries. But as STOs become more and more complex, they too are typified by the definitions of VUCA environments.

Volatility

Change is rapid and unpredictable

Uncertainty

The present is unclear; the future is uncertain

Complexity

 

Many different and diverse interconnected factors

Ambiguity

Lack of clarity or awareness of the situation

Why Do STOs Continue to be Late and Over-Budget?

As high-VUCA environments, STOs are fundamentally different to any capital or routine maintenance project. The majority exceed their KPIs because they cannot be successfully planned, managed and executed using age-old “tried and tested” project management tools and techniques.
To date, there has been no holistic solution that by design addresses the root cause and unique management challenges associated with high-VUCA environments.

STO Success Factors

The success of any STO is dependent on five main factors:

Scope

Cost

Schedule

Quality

EHS

The Impact of VUCA on STO Success Factors

Volatility

Uncertainty

Complexity

Ambiguity

Scope

Multiple stakeholders & found work drive change

Scope only fully understood after opening & inspecting equipment

Many tasks to complete in a very short timeframe, with competing priorities & constraints

Lack of unified view & transparency limit optimization of scope

Cost

Limited time & available data raise cost of inevitable changes

With multiple unknowns & changing scope, cost uncertainty is high

Inefficiencies associated with poor ability to manage complexity raise cost

Ambiguous scope & contractor unfamiliarity result in greater contingency and higher estimates

Schedule

Directly impacted by scope changes & limited ability to identify most effective use of resources

Lack of real-time visibility & poor agility related to re-scheduling decisions

Many interdependent tasks require harmonious operation of labor, material & equipment for successful execution

Delayed/absent field data & historical analysis result in outdated &/or inaccurate schedule, & reliance on historical estimates & excessive buffers

Quality

Quality is impacted by time and cost pressures, as well as contractor familiarity

Challenges enforcing accountability & lack of transparency reduce quality

Complex activities require multiple crafts & contractors, generating ownership & coordination issues that reduce overall quality

Poorly communicated quality standards and expectations result in highly variable results and rework

EHS

Rapidly changing work environments are inherently dangerous

Assumptions, poor controls & lack of accountability can create EHS risks

Time pressures, inadequate resources & craft-to-craft dependencies can lead to serious EHS incidents

Unfamiliarity & poorly documented processes & procedures generate reliance on “tribal knowledge” & risks

The Impact of VUCA on STO Success Factors

Scope

Volatility

Multiple stakeholders & found work drive change

Uncertainty

Scope only fully understood after opening & inspecting equipment

Complexity

Many tasks to complete in a very short timeframe, with competing priorities & constraints

Ambiguity

Lack of unified view & transparency limit optimization of scope

Cost

Volatility

Limited time & available data raise cost of inevitable changes

Uncertainty

With multiple unknowns & changing scope, cost uncertainty is high

Complexity

Inefficiencies associated with poor ability to manage complexity raise cost

Ambiguity

Ambiguous scope & contractor unfamiliarity result in greater contingency and higher estimates

Schedule

Volatility

Directly impacted by scope changes & limited ability to identify most effective use of resources

Uncertainty

Lack of real-time visibility & poor agility related to re-scheduling decisions

Complexity

Many interdependent tasks require harmonious operation of labor, material & equipment for successful execution

Ambiguity

Delayed/absent field data & historical analysis result in outdated &/or inaccurate schedule, & reliance on historical estimates & excessive buffers

Quality

Volatility

Quality is impacted by time and cost pressures, as well as contractor familiarity

Uncertainty

Challenges enforcing accountability & lack of transparency reduce quality

Complexity

Complex activities require multiple crafts & contractors, generating ownership & coordination issues that reduce overall quality

Ambiguity

Poorly communicated quality standards and expectations result in highly variable results and rework

EHS

Volatility

Rapidly changing work environments are inherently dangerous

Uncertainty

Assumptions, poor controls & lack of accountability can create EHS risks

Complexity

Time pressures, inadequate resources & craft-to-craft dependencies can lead to serious EHS incidents

Ambiguity

Unfamiliarity & poorly documented processes & procedures generate reliance on “tribal knowledge” & risks