The evolution from plant maintenance to physical asset management : an analysis of the Sasol Synfuels roadmap for change

Botes, Hein (2006-12)

Thesis (MBA)--Stellenbosch University, 2006.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The change management approach followed during the installation of a new maintenance work management process (termed SAMI Stage1) in Sasol Synfuels is assessed. A framework and a set of change management principles are derived from literature relevant to the topic and are used as a basis to assess the implemented change. The concept of physical asset management is also reviewed and incorporated into the overall framework. The assessment reveals the following positive aspects of the change management process followed: • Excellent executive sponsorship throughout the implementation of SAMI Stage 1. • The use of one team of Sasol Synfuels personnel to develop the strategic plan and another team to perform the design of the new maintenance work management process has resulted in a core group of change advocates within Sasol Synfuels. • Sasol Synfuels business units were declared SAM I Stage 1 competent, which included the achievement of outcome indicators as well as behavioural changes. • The SAMI Stage 1 change is reinforced through further changes such as SAMI Stage 2, SAM PI (production initiative), as well as the creation of a new department, OPEX, to facilitate operational excellence within Sasol Synfuels. • The overall SAMI roadmap, commencing with maintenance work management, is found to be an effective vehicle to achieve the future integrated state of asset management. However, the following negative aspects of the implemented change are also highlighted: • The concept of physical asset management as the ultimate objective of the SAMI process was inadequately explained and coached to the organisation. Although maintenance work management efficiency has improved, the organisation has not made the mental transition from a cost centre mentality to a profit centre mentality. • Production personnel were initially excluded to a large extent, since SAM I Stage 1 was installed as a predominantly maintenance-focussed initiative. However, production personnel are required to play a large role in the maintenance work management process and their initial exclusion required significant stakeholder management during the advanced stages of the change. • There have not been significant changes to the recognition and reward systems in Sasol Synfuels in order to enhance the integration of specifically the maintenance and production functions. The organisation is thus still very much focused on functional excellence as opposed to the integrated concept of asset management. The effectiveness of installing a maintenance work management process first and then addressing equipment failures is also reviewed. It is concluded that this approach of firstly establishing discipline in the execution of maintenance work is indeed a viable approach. However, the overall objective of asset management must be considered from the onset and the organisation must be continuously aligned to that objective. Based on the above observations, recommendations are made on futu re Sasol implementations of maintenance work management processes. In essence there should be more focus on the concept of physical asset management before and during such an implementation. It is also recommended that a post SAM I Stage 1 project analysis should be performed (using appropriate questionnaires andlor interviews) to assess the positive and negative aspects as encountered by the organisation. These learning pOints should be documented and used for future, similar interventions. It should also be established whether the changes in behaviour and outcome are due to predominantly compliance to the work management process, or whether there is significant commitment to the process. Commitment to the process by the majority of the organisation is required to ensure sustainability there of.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die benadering soos gevolg ten opsigte van veranderingsbestuur gedurende die implementering van 'n nuwe instandhoudingswerk bestuursproses in Sasol Synfuels (genaamd SAM I Fase 1), word ondersoek. 'n Raamwerk en 'n stel beginsels met betrekking tot veranderingsbestuur word uit die relevante nagevorste literatuur ontwikkel en word gebruik as 'n basis waarteen die geimplementeerde verandering geevalueer word. Die beginsel van fisiese batebestuur word ook ondersoek en in die oorhoofse raamwerk geinkorporeer. Die volgende positiewe aspekte van die veranderingsbestuur proses wat gevolg was, word deur die ondersoek openbaar: • Uitstekende borgskap deur uitvoerende bestuur tydens die verloop van die implementering van SAMI Fase 1. • Die gebruik van een span Sasol Synfuels personeel om die strategiese plan te ontwikkel en 'n ander span om die ontwerp van die nuwe instandhoudingswerk bestuursproses te behartig, het gelei tot die ontstaan van 'n kern groep in die organisasie wat die verandering ondersteun. • Besigheidseenhede in Sasol Synfuels is SAM I Fase 1 bedrewe verklaar, wat die behaling van uitkomsindikators, sowel as gedragsveranderinge insluit. • Die SAMI Fase 1 verandering word versterk deur verdere veranderings soos SAMI Fase 2, SAMPI (produksie inisiatief), sowel as die daarstelling van 'n nuwe afdeling, OPEX, om operasionele uitnemendheid in Sasol Synfuels te fasiliteer. • Die algehele SAMI proses, beginnende met die bestuur van instandhoudingswerk, is effektief bevind om die toekomstige, geintegreerde toestand van batebestuur te verwesenlik. Die volgende negatiewe aspekte van die geimplementeerde verandering word egter ook uitgelig: • Die beginsel dat fisiese batebestuur die uiteindelike doelwit van die SAMI proses is, was nie voldoende verduidelik en oorgedra aan die organisasie nie, Alhoewel die effektiwiteit van instandhoudingswerk bestuur verbeter het, het die organisasie nie die paradigma skuif gemaak van 'n kostegesentreerde denkwyse na 'n winsgesentreerde denkwyse nie. • Aanvanklik was produksiepersoneel grootliks uitgesluit uit die proses, aangesien SAMI Fase 1 hoofsaaklik as 'n instandhoudingsinisiatief aangepak is. Produksiepersoneel het egter 'n groot rol om te speel in die instandhoudingswerk bestuursproses en hulle aanvanklike uitsluiting het gelei tot aansienlike bestuur van belanghebbendes gedurende die gevorderde stadiums van die verandering. • Daar is nog nie betekenisvolle veranderinge gemaak aan die vergoedings -en erkenningssisteme in Sasol Synfuels om sodoende die integrasie van spesifiek die instandhouding en produksiefunksies te bevorder nie. Daar is dus nog steeds 'n sterk fokus in die organisasie op funksionele uitnemendheid in teenstelling met die geintegreerde beginsel van batebestuur. Daar word ook gekyk na hoe effektief dit is om eers 'n instandhoudingswerk bestuursproses te installeer voordat toerustingfalings ondersoek word. Die gevolgtrekking word gemaak dat hierdie benadering om eers dissipline in die uitvoering van instandhoudingswerk daar te stel, inderdaad 'n haalbare benadering is. Die oorhoofse doelwit van batebestuur moet egter vanaf die begin oorweeg word en die organisasie moet gedurig op koers gehou word rakende daardie oogmerk. Voorstelle, gegrond op bogenoemde waarnemings, word gemaak vir die toekomstige implementering van instandhoudingswerk bestuursprosesse in Sasol. In wese moet daar meer gefokus word op die beginsel van batebestuur voor en gedurende so 'n implementering. Daar word ook aanbeveel dat 'n nabetragting gehou word rondom die implementering van SAMI Fase 1 (met behulp van gepaste vraelyste en/of onderhoude) om die positiewe en negatiewe aspekte, soos ondervind is deur die organisasie, te evalueer. Hierdie inligting moet dan gedokumenteer word en gebruik word vir toekomstige, soortgelyke intervensies. Daar moet ook bepaal word of die verandering in gedrag en resultate die gevolg is van oorwegend die navolging van die proses of toewyding aan die proses. Die meerderheid van die organisasie moet toegewyd wees aan die proses om volhoubaarheid te verseker.

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