To achieve best performance, a shipyard’s processes and practices need to be optimised for the range of ship types it works on, its throughput and its cost base. Our approach to performance improvement projects involves working closely with our clients to develop and design both the ‘soft’ pre-production and the ‘hard’ production processes. Our independence ensures that we concentrate on optimising the processes, rather than focusing on particular shipyard equipment or systems.
Of all shipbuilding operations, the design and engineering functions have the greatest impact on the final cost of a vessel and hence a shipyard's ability to remain competitive. In today's shipbuilding environment, many shipyards have had to broaden the range of ship types they focus on. Together with pressure to reduce design and build time, this is driving a product-oriented philosophy. Through participation in research, we have been central to the development of this approach and have successfully assisted shipyards with its implementation. The result is that each ship is designed and constructed from a unique aggregation of standard interim products, manufactured in specialised workstations. Many of the production planning, scheduling and control functions are also simplified.
We are at the forefront of pre-production operations development, and have led the introduction of production engineering, product oriented philosophy and workstation information principles in many shipyards. This has resulted in improved quality and accuracy of production information, reduced pre-production lead-time, better productivity and reductions in first of class performance drop off.