If you were to ask any CFO or Controller which department should be responsible for all Procurement for the company, they would naturally respond with the Finance Department. On the other hand, if you were to ask any project controls professional about procurement, they would naturally respond with the Project Team, they should own procurement.
So, who’s right?
There is a very heated and divisive debate going on in many areas of North America about pipelines. More specifically, a debate about whether or not to build new pipelines to move Oil and Gas from where it’s extracted, to one of the several refineries available across the continent. It’s an ideological clash that is steeped in near-religious conviction, misinformation, economic consequences and two sides that have dug in their heels; neither of which is prepared to budge.
Pipeline proponents will argue that pipelines are the safest, cheapest and most reliable way to move oil and gas. They provide jobs, wealth and access to markets for a valuable commodity. Opponents however, claim that we need to reduce our carbon footprint, so pipelines represent further destruction of our fragile environment. Both sides, of course, have valid points, wherein lies the dispute.
In this article I’m going to go through the basics of how, after creating a change order in 4castplus, you can go on to make any revisions to purchase orders based on the details of that change order. First, however, I’ll clarify a bit of terminology in terms of the difference between a change order and PO revision:
For any organization, their corporate data is one of the most important assets they possess. The information they gather on a daily basis forms the core of who they are, where they’ve been and where they’re going. The monumental technology changes going on in the world today have made ‘Data’ the central element that determines success or failure for most any company.
On any day of any major construction project, a ton of information is being collected about that project. Including: costs, hours, activities and progress; along with a variety of documents, photos, invoices and receipts. Feeding all this data to the project managers is critical to enable them to bring the project to a successful completion on time and on budget.
The thing is, all this data that’s collected needs to be both accurate and complete, otherwise it’s not much use to anyone. Not only that, but it also has to be timely – meaning that, giving project managers data that several weeks old doesn’t really help much. It needs to be current, like from today, otherwise you’re managing the past, which is not only ineffective, but frustrating.
A few months ago, the team at SECURE Energy Services approached us at 4castplus with a situational challenge that they needed to have resolved. The problem they were experiencing, was that the multiple business divisions using 4castplus as their core operational solution, were deployed into separate 4castplus accounts. While each division was happy with the software and its value to their business unit, this approach introduced some corporate-level challenges.
Construction costs in the US have been escalating for months now, and it’s so far the contractors who are carrying the weight of absorbing these price increases. This, according to a recent study by the Associated General Contractors, who went on to point out that recent tariffs on non-US foreign materials have further intensified the issue.
The Pain of Higher Construction Costs
Everyone wants to run a ‘Lean’ operation. But how do you do that when there’s so much work to do, projects to stay on top of, reports to run, etc.? The behavioral challenge most organizations suffer from when it comes to running lean, is what I call the “More means More” syndrome. Put simply, this means: as you grow and get more work, you just add more people to do that work. More work, therefore more people, right? Well, hang on a second.
We often get asked about the distinction between re-baselining a project and creating a change order. I can see why there’s a bit of confusion there because in many respects they accomplish a similar outcome. However, they are fundamentally different processes that serve unique purposes.