Project Vs. Turnaround


still target


moving target

Usually well-defined scope, from:

  1. drawings
  2. specifications
  3. contracts
  4. permits, memos, etc.

Usually loosely defined scope, from:

  1. past turnaround experience
  2. inspection reports
  3. operations requests
  4. historical estimates

Scope is static. Few changes occur during execution.

Scope is dynamic. Many changes occur as inspections are made.

Can be planned and scheduled well in advance of the project.

Planning and scheduling cannot be finalized until the scope is approved, generally near the shutdown date.

Projects are organized around cost codes / commodities.

Turnarounds are work order based.

Generally do not require safety permits to perform work.

Turnaround work requires extensive permitting every shift.

Manpower staffing requirements usually do not change during project execution.

Manpower staffing requirements change during execution due to scope fluctuations (from discovery work).

Project schedules can be updated either weekly or monthly.

Turnaround schedules must be updated every shift, daily.

Projects measure time in days, weeks and months.

Turnarounds measure time in hours or shifts.

Project scope is usually all mandatory.

Turnaround scope is flexible. Usually a large percentage of work can be postponed to a later window of opportunity if necessary.

Project schedules are uncompressed. Schedule acceleration can be used to correct slippages in the critical path.

Turnaround schedules are compressed. There may be little or no opportunity to correct the critical path by accelerating the schedule.

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Authored by Bernard Ertl, Partner, InterPlan Systems

Bernard Ertl has a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and extensive field experience planning and managing turnarounds in the oil refining and petrochemical process industries.