It has come to our attention that a large number of people in the oil and natural gas industry are struggling with the topic of management of change (MOC). Although the details of implementation will be very different for different situations, great MOC programs are developed from the same basic foundation.
The first fundamental aspect of MOC is the actual change request. What change needs to be made? What are the individual specs for the materials needed? What plans and documents need to be included in the change request to fully communicate what is needed? If you can’t clearly communicate what it is that needs to be changed, then the change can’t be implemented properly.
The next aspect of MOC that needs addressed is the reward of the change. Why am I even making this change? Each change should be fully connected to satisfying a business objective. Again, specificity is important in addressing these concerns. The reward needs to clearly satisfy a business goal. If it does not, why even bother taking the risk?
Possibly the most important foundation of the MOC program is the evaluation team. The MOC evaluation team is responsible for the objective evaluation of the requests. Members should represent different areas of expertise throughout the organization, with different experiences under their belt. There shouldn’t be any aspect of a request that the team can’t properly address and evaluate. Team members should be respected among their peers, and confident enough to speak up when they have concerns. If these criteria are used, your organization will select a MOC evaluation team that can handle any challenge put in front of them.
The API Spec Q2 requirements take a risk-based approach to quality management. When making changes, risks must be identified and measured by level of acceptability. Risks that are deemed unacceptable must be paired with mitigation plans. These plans are then designated to be carried out before, during, or after the implementation process. The purpose of the mitigation plans is to help bring the risk down to an acceptable level.
The next area we will address deals with the approval aspect of MOC. Many organizations get into trouble in this area, confusing the need for approval with the need to inform. It’s important to note that every change doesn’t have to have the same approver. A great MOC program should have an approval matrix describing who needs to approve which type of decisions, as well as a list of people who “must be informed”. If your organization gets these steps right, the approval process will be quick and painless.
This leads us to the communication section nicely. As stated before, there are those who need to “approve” and those who “must be informed”. We need to track our communication efforts with respect to the MOC. In other words, any message and corresponding response must be documented. The person responsible for sending the message is also responsible for getting a confirmation from the recipient. This means after the change is communicated, a receipt confirmation should be requested. Also, it is important to make it clear to your organization that an email response should be expected from the recipient. Simply flagging it as “Request a Read Receipt” isn’t going to get the job done. Once the recipient has responded, stating that they have received the message and understand the information, then the responsibility shifts to them to carry out the appropriate action.
Implementation of the change
First, we will want to execute any per-implementation changes and corresponding mitigation efforts that were identified. Subsequent to the implementation we will want to perform any post-implementation tasks that are required. Example would include updating procedures or modifying training materials to address the change.
Next, we need to confirm the effectiveness of the change. Once the change has been implemented it is important to make sure that the change does what it was intended to do. Sometimes organizations experience undesirable results. When this happens, we must determine if the system should be restored to the old model, or develop a new MOC to address the unintended results.
Finally, we need to follow-up and confirm the success of our mitigation efforts. This ensures that the new system will not produce any unseen difficulties for the organization. Also, we need to verify that the change is going to leave the system running smoothly and safely. Once all of these steps have been completed in their entirety, then the change can be closed.
After closure, we still have one final but critical step remaining. We must perform surveillance audits to confirm the changes were carried out consistently and the system is being used as intended. Comprehensive process audits are a great way to determine implementation results. Randomly selecting a few processes related to the change and auditing them is a good way to achieve this. It is important to remember that audits should be performed at periodic intervals. The frequency of audits depends on several factors, but should be scheduled in a manner that guarantees the sustainability of the change.
Accupoint Software is a global provider of innovative compliance management systems. Our integrated platforms streamline business processes, increase customer satisfaction and help organizations navigate today’s complex regulatory requirements.
Securing materials and equipment is the first step in the supply chain. A company's competitiveness is directly influenced by the performance of suppliers. A supplier that does not perform well can add costs, cause serious delays and can damage your company's reputation. It is imperative to have a system to evaluate your suppliers. It will help you determine potential problems like low standards of quality, poor communication, and substandard resources. Every company needs to have a supplier evaluation model in place to measure a supplier's ability to comply with their contractual obligations.
Supplier evaluation will identify their strengths and weaknesses. Several criteria should be considered including quality, delivery, service, and flexibility. Generally, the most important factor is quality followed by delivery, service and then flexibility. An effective means of evaluating suppliers is assigning them to one of four categories based on performance: full partner, associate partner, high risk and incapable. A full partner meets or exceeds all expectations. An associate partner needs some work, but performs well overall. A high risk supplier must be carefully evaluated. They can be used for the production currently underway, but future contracts require consideration. An incapable supplier will be dropped as soon as possible as they cannot properly fulfill their obligations.
A full partner must be compatible with you company’s current and future business plan. They will always demonstrate high quality, on-time delivery, superior service and flexibility. The supplier participates in your automatic ordering system. They will provide full support quickly, and be available anytime for questions. A full partner should also assist with new designs and provide samples within one to two weeks. They will demonstrate an ability to develop new processes and be committed to research and development. They will not ship out-of-spec parts, and have well documented quality controls. They will optimize lead times and allow order flexibility within reason. They will show commitment to cost reductions and share their cost structures and pricing models.
An associate partner will meet most of the criteria of a full partner. The associate partner should demonstrate a commitment to improving quality and delivery. You can work with them to develop action plans to meet your goals. The supplier must fulfill the needs of your company. They should be willing to work toward meeting the criteria to become a full partner.
High Risk Partner
A high risk partner is not compatible with the goals of your company. Their current quality and delivery are acceptable to maintain current production, but there is no benefit in expending the resources to bring them to associate or full partner status. The cost and quality are below your company’s acceptable standards.
Incapable suppliers do not meet quality standards. They do not demonstrate the capability of improving quality, delivery, service or flexibility. These suppliers must be dropped immediately.
Evaluating the performance of suppliers using an Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP) model helps to determine the importance of each criterion and interpret the findings. You will determine what is most important for your company, and use that to rate your suppliers. Supplier can be measured based on the four main criteria: quality, delivery, service and flexibility. To determine the rest of the criterion you should consider whether the attributes are “soft” criteria (like supplier commitment or service) or “hard” quantifiable criteria (like the supplier's ability to fulfill orders). When thinking about cost, consider that the total cost of a product includes all the factors that go into getting your product to market in addition to its initial procurement cost.
For further information on how Accupoint can help your critical supplier management process, contact us today.
The petroleum industry requires dangerous work. Protecting personnel from injury requires rigorous monitoring and training protocols and scrupulous attention to reporting, prevention and data analysis when an accident occurs. Here are three fundamental concepts to keep in mind when designing an effective injury management program:
1) Know your hazards. Most injuries in the petroleum industry fall into one of two large categories: safety-related injuries and health-related injuries.
Safety-related injuries include those related to:
Health-related hazards include:
Be aware of where each of these may appear in your site or team workflows and make sure preventive and responsive protocols are in place to deal with each.
2) Manage your risks. A robust risk management program has the following 7 steps:
3) Design a program that works. Effective injury management programs must satisfy the following requirements:
If you adhere to the guidelines above when designing and refining your injury management program, you will be able to anticipate problems more effectively and resolve them more efficiently. For more information on how Accupoint’s web-based solution can help you improve your injury management program, please contact us today.