Overcoming the “missing link” ensures the right staff and resources are deployed at the right time, in compliance and that projects are profitable
Lee Clarke at Dynama shares his five top tips for creating end-to-end workforce management to boost safety, compliance and profitability
The offshore industry is a complex beast that is fraught with danger and a major set of challenges associated with running today’s large engineering projects. Huge numbers of personnel are involved, frequently at multiple, hard-to-reach locations across the world. They need to be kept safe and in line with the stringent requirements of authorities such as the Offshore Safety Directive Regulator (OSDR), set up in the wake of the Deepwater Horizon accident in the Gulf of Mexico. Failure to recognize this can be catastrophic and non-compliance can result in large penalties, reputational damage and lost contracts.
The Health & Safety Executive (HSE) in the UK paints a vivid picture of the sheer scale and complications of this major employment sector (i). According to HSE, the national independent watchdog for work-related health, safety and illness, the UK offshore industry has a population of 32,077 full time equivalent (FTE) employees who spent 5.3 million days working offshore in 2015. In the same year, 135 inspections were undertaken at 104 offshore installations managed by 47 operators. A total of 113 injuries were reported and 97 safety cases were assessed, an increase of over a third on the previous year. The numbers are even greater in the United States and other areas of the world.
In addition to these essential safety and compliance regulations, offshore organizations are often confronted with a distinct disconnect between their strategic HR and project management systems. This is a rising phenomenon, sometimes termed the ‘missing link’ and it should not be ignored.
Overcoming the “missing link” ensures the right staff and resources are deployed at the right time, in compliance and that projects are profitable.
Five steps to closing the missing link
Some of the world’s most successful offshore companies do a great job of amalgamating information, people, systems and processes and their secret lies in automation. It’s time to ditch those spreadsheets in favour of the latest workforce deployment solutions - just make sure you find the best one.
Technology should combine five essential ingredients. Look out for a solution that offers:
1.A global single source of workforce planning information providing the ability to dynamically identify the location and availability of relevant personnel in relation to each project site
2.Easy-to-use tools for troubleshooting to ensure identification of issues with the ability to carry out ‘what if’ analysis for future projects and bids
3.Specialist functionality for managing engineering projects by resource utilisation and headcount
4.Easy integration with market-leading HR and project management systems
5.The ability to provide real-time evidence to satisfy compliance inspectors.
Don’t forget the skills matrix
Once you have the right technology in place, combine it with a skills matrix to prevent talent shortfalls at high-risk sites. Creating a matrix will help you to schedule the right staff for the right projects at the right time, ensure staff reach and maintain a sufficient level of expertise with a list of relevant skills and qualifications, identify personnel that require training, provide a well-defined career path for employees, demonstrate compliance with health and safety inspections and provide clients with accurate personnel résumés.
Take your lead from real-life success stories
Consider examples like McDermott International. The Houston-based global engineering organization is a great case study on how to close the missing link and now has a birds-eye view of offshore resources around the world. It uses automation to maximise its worldwide pool of talent and capitalize on new business opportunities. With all crew and training information in one place, McDermott can capture real-time intelligence relating to staff, their whereabouts in the company and out in the field and whether they are qualified for a particular role or project. This data makes it quick and easy to develop an effective skills matrix that manages talent and deploys resources effortlessly.
Automated workforce deployment software has enabled McDermott International to schedule approximately 7,075 people across 11 primary vessels, in addition to a number of support vessels, and 4 marine bases involving fluctuating activity levels. The company has also managed to increase and enhance collaboration between separate but complementary business functions such as Crewing Logistics, HR, and the Quality, Health, Safety, Environment and Security (QHSES) department.
By closing the missing link with integrated systems, people and processes, offshore organizations can look forward to better utilization of resources, safer and happier staff, demonstrable regulatory compliance, profitable projects and healthy business growth.
Lee Clarke is Regional Director – Northern Hemisphere at Dynama Dynama Global
Dynama, an Allocate Software company, builds on 20 years’ heritage and is a leading provider of maritime and defence workforce deployment software. Headquartered in London, Dynama has a fully fledged new office in Canberra (Australia) with sales and support in the USA.
Its flagship product, Dynama OneView, is designed to underpin complex workforce optimization in safety critical and highly skilled environments, delivering both safe staffing and productivity savings.
For more information, visit Dynama Global
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(i)“Offshore Statistics and Regulatory Activity Report 2015”
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