The key to successful progressive handover in capital project management

Capital project management is a complex and challenging process that requires seamless collaboration between multiple parties to achieve a successful outcome. The goal of every engineering project is the handover of the finalized as-built information to operations so the resulting asset can generate revenue for the owner-operator. However, the handover process can be challenging due to vast amounts of documents that need to be managed and checked when assigning the right documents to the right operations and maintenance records in the owner-operator’s asset information management systems. In recent years, most companies have adopted a progressive handover approach to help reduce long delays during the handover process. In this blog, we will discuss the perils of progressive handover and how a coordinated Asset Information Management (AIM) strategy can mitigate them.

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What are the benefits of progressive handover?

Progressive handover is a phased approach that involves transferring information to operations as it becomes available, rather than waiting until the end of the project process. This approach offers many benefits, such as:

  • Improved project continuity
  • Better knowledge transfer
  • More flexibility in dealing with change
  • Improved performance by involving the maintenance team earlier in the process

Discover 6 reasons to choose progressive handovers.

What are the challenges of data handover processes?

Despite its advantages, several project and operations stakeholders have found out the hard way that it can be challenging to put into practice.

Any handover process is underpinned by the management and transfer of the built asset information, which can encompass multiple information data types, both structured and unstructured. Some of the areas that can trip up the data handover process include data ownership, data location, communication, and timing.

  • Data ownership: It can be challenging to transfer ownership if data is still potentially being updated by the authors. If data is linked across multiple systems, how can the transfer of ownership be coordinated?
  • Data location: It can be challenging to physically transfer data between projects and the operations data stores. If the data is in multiple systems and applications, it becomes more complex and often leads to incomplete or inadequate documentation.
  • Communication: It can be difficult to ensure that all communication between the different project parties is coordinated effectively. From an AIM point of view, there must be a planned approach with a system of actions, notification of changes, and a full audit trail to clarify any disputes or contractual breaches.
  • Timing: Issues such as an overlap between the exiting and incoming engineering teams can cause delays in the project and operational readiness. If handover is progressive and starts early, there may not be a team ready to receive and validate the data, and the operations systems may not be fully implemented and running.

How can a coordinated asset information management strategy help?

To mitigate the perils of progressive handover, a coordinated AIM strategy is key. Doing everything digitally is essential, but just converting all information to bits and bytes isn’t the panacea for better efficiency on its own. The transformational changes that create real value come when digital technologies are used to change a business model and provide new, faster, more reliable and higher value solutions to the challenges faced.

Taking a holistic view means coordinating data across applications and controlling it to manage compliance and risk. Engineers should be able to find the data they need, whatever application they are using, and that data needs to be centrally coordinated to ensure a single source of truth, controlling approvals and access for multiple different use cases.

Management and control in the cloud also provides the opportunity to coordinate the transfer and ownership of project data to operations without the data having to be physically moved at all. Access can be revoked by role as required, and new roles can be assigned with access to the data from different application interfaces targeting operations and maintenance processes and the teams carrying out those processes.

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