Looking Back on Day One of TINC America 2017

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TINC America 2017 represents an important milestone. As the 15th Annual Turnaround Industry Network Conference, it signifies a decade-and-a-half of turnaround industry leaders coming together to push the boundaries of turnaround knowledge.

September 19th, 2017

TINC America 2017 represents an important milestone. As the 15th Annual Turnaround Industry Network Conference, it signifies a decade-and-a-half of turnaround industry leaders coming together to push the boundaries of turnaround knowledge.

Asset Performance Networks Managing Director Brett Schroeder took to the stage to welcome the owner-operators in attendance, and to look back on all TINC has accomplished. Over 15 years, what started as a single event in Houston, Texas with 18 attendees has grown into a global series of conferences that see more than 200 turnaround professionals attend each year. Brett emphasized his pride in the city of Houston, noting the incredible resilience shown by the city that made it possible to hold TINC America here just weeks after the devastation wrought by Hurricane Harvey.

Rich Guttchen—Turnaround Manager, Complex Process Facilities at Chevron—took to the stage next to deliver the Keynote Address. A couple decades ago at Chevron, there was no such thing as a turnaround plan; the plant was shut down, the team dove in, and everyone was happy when the event was over. In 1996, Chevron rolled out IMPACT—the Initiative for Managing PACesetter Turnarounds. Now Rich sits on monthly calls that involve the worldwide Chevron organization, discussing turnaround best practices with site leaders in upstream, downstream, complex process, and non-complex process facilities across the globe.

Nathan Centofanti was up next. As the Manager of Benchmarking and Data Services for AP-Networks, Nathan and his team work to develop the benchmarks that guide the insights and best practices shared at TINC and in AP-Networks engagements worldwide. His presentation looked at the practices that drive turnaround performance. In particular, Nathan singled out scope control, adherence to scope freeze, and effective Management of Change (MOCs). While effective scope control is a tough nut to crack, the payoff is big. Nathan also emphasized that the top quartile performers didn’t start there. The journey to top quartile takes practice, patience, and dedication, but it can be achieved.

AP-Networks Consultant Josh Kise followed Nathan, diving further into the AP-Networks benchmarks to shed light on the trends evident in turnaround outcomes. After five years of relative consistency in cost and schedule predictability, industry seems to be getting more predictable. For the first time at TINC, Josh shared some interesting data on turnaround intervals. For companies with weak or average readiness, the transition to longer intervals between turnarounds leads to less predictability in terms of schedule. But for those companies that exhibit a high degree of readiness, longer time between turnarounds allowed them to stay closer to their planned schedule duration.

After our first Breakout Session of the day and a well-deserved lunch break, Heith Robey, Turnaround Leader at Celanese, came to the stage to describe the journey to turnaround excellence at the Celanese Clear Lake site. Like many, that journey started from “rock bottom,” with behaviors that drove a “cycle of failure.” In 2012, the site realized it was time for a change. Heith came on as Turnaround Manager, and a five-year plan was put together. In addition to instituting a standardized work process with five phase gates, the site put an incredible emphasis on people. As Heith pointed out, “Who shows up at your job site will determine if you succeed or fail.” Today, the Clear Lake site has made tangible gains, performing strongly vs industry.

Following another thought-provoking Breakout Session, it was time for a joint presentation from AP-Networks Consultant Chris Miller and Michael Troxclair, Turnaround Event Manager at Shell’s Norco Manufacturing Complex. They walked us through Shell Norco’s own ongoing turnaround journey to close the competitiveness gap between their turnaround outcomes and top quartile performance. Throughout the site, folks had an intuition on where energy should be spent to achieve the biggest gains. Shell Norco partnered with AP-Networks to capture quantifiable data on their own performance vs. industry. Armed with that information, they were able to develop a Credible Path to Top Quartile that pinpointed the areas that would deliver the biggest gains, confirming intuition with hard data and getting everyone on the same page.

After an action-packed day, the attendees of TINC America 2017 are eager to get to the night’s entertainment—dinner and drinks at Topgolf.


About Asset Performance Networks

AP-Networks is the indispensable trusted partner to global petroleum, chemical, and energy companies that aim to optimize their assets’ performance and maximize operational efficiency. Our company achieves its mission by infusing strategic innovation, proven expertise, actionable insights, and unparalleled businesses intelligence analytics into a unique, winning formula for success. We leverage our databases, benchmarks, Software as a Service (SaaS) engines, and our industry-recognized consulting expertise to ensure that our clients mitigate, manage, and control high-risk events. Ultimately, our clients Aim Higher to realize superior business outcomes, and Aim Smarter to drive breakthrough performance in capital projects and plant turnarounds. For more information, visit AP-Networks.com.


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2017-09-20T16:35:15-04:00September 19th, 2017|News, News & Insights|