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Client: Ineos Chlor
Project: Improved Business Performance via AMS REALTIME Projects

Background

Ineos Chlor is one of the six businesses that comprise the Ineos Group. It is one of the major chlor-alkali producers in Europe and a global leader in chlorine derivatives. They currently operate sites in the UK, Germany, France and Thailand with 1800 staff. The turnover relating to these sites alone is €830 million.

Product reliability is complemented by a strong focus on customer needs, and they place great emphasis on working alongside their customers in a partnership geared to preparing for future market and product demands.

To retain their position as an industry leader they have to ensure that they recognise trends and opportunities in world market demands and then they focus on responding to and exceeding their customers' needs.

Therefore, in order to meet these customer demands, it is essential that they have tools and processes that ensure business efficiency. AMS REALTIME Projects has been implemented into their planning department to realise this.

Using AMS REALTIME

Their projects cater for all the planned maintenance of the plants and these projects range from a couple of days to six to eight weeks in duration, utilising as much as 150,000 man hours.

They have developed the use of generic plans (i.e. standard activities/calendars/ resources) in order that all the plans look the same wherever they have been produced. This also provides greater flexibility when planning resources and highlights when and where they are working on a site. They have kept to a relatively basic Project Management approach and they tend not to include costing. This approach has allowed them to concentrate on improved planning and better use of their resources.

Prior to implementing AMS REALTIME Projects, they controlled their work using Planning boards; these were pieces of cards with the activity written on them and were cut to a timescale, (e.g. a 6-inch long piece of card represented an activity that should take 6 hours). These cards were then placed against the resource required. This was an extremely time-consuming activity and also lacked the accuracy that was truly necessary.

Before the AMS REALTIME software was introduced, they used a PROMINI system. This did not allow them to perform resource leveling. They then moved to Korkus, a K&H system, but this was extremely time consuming, it could take them hours simply to time analyse their plans.

The lack of flexibility in the Korkus systems and the lack of resource management functionality, led Ineos Chlor to implement AMS REALTIME in April 1996. They wanted a Windows based system that kept them up to date in real time and they found that Schedule Publisher (now AMS REALTIME Projects) was the best and most cost effective system available.

Some of the key drivers that led Ineos Chlor to implement AMS REALTIME Projects were…

  • to reduce downtime of their plants during planned maintenance.
  • to get better use of their resources by using a quicker what-if scenario mechanism.
  • for consistency across their planning organisation (based on everyone using the same tool).

AMS REALTIME Projects was able to meet all these criteria and ultimately helped improve communication of event plans and validation processes.

Conclusion

Harry Coomer, a planning manager at Ineos Chlor, believes that they have made a 10/15 times reduction in time due to the implementation of AMS REALTIME Projects.

He states: "AMS REALTIME is core to our site planning needs. We also transfer information between MSP and AMS. We have also over the years seen and used Primavera/OpenPlan/Artemis and many others, but AMS REALTIME is a good solid tool for our needs and is our planning tool of choice."

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