Several studies indicate that better collaboration in operation and maintenance can bring multi-billion euro cost savings opportunity world-wide for process industry companies and for companies serving them. The industry has not yet succeeded to claim those savings, but several companies already have built or are developing their enhanced collaboration strategies. Collaxion is in the core of this development.
Collaboration means that benefits and cost savings should be shared collaboratively too. Owner/operators are implementing portals to manage collaboration with their subcontractors. Suppliers, vendors and service providers are developing new value-added services in order to be able to offer collaborative services. One key for all players is in better business processes and better information management. The cost savings opportunities are split among all industry players. The other and more challenging key is to agree how these possible savings and other business benefits should be shared between the players. The simple fact that all companies must optimize their own performance is in obvious contradiction with the collaboration idea. Collaxion is offering a groundbreaking simple solution to overcome this challenge.
The cost are hidden in the three basic elements that are entwined together
1. Internal business processes to support business interfaces
2. Information integrity (quality) to facilitate better usability
3. Collaboration business processes to exchange asset and work related information
The most important issue of course is the first one. Most of the industry leaders are now focusing on improving internal business processes. Owner/operators are connecting portals to their internal processes in order to better manage subcontractors’ work and information flows. Suppliers, vendors and service providers have built their own portals to provide more efficiently information for their customers. In both cases it is crucial to get own internal business processes in own ERP-systems as optimal as possible. Luckily there are lot of advices and solutions available from ERP system providers and consulting companies.
The second issue is related to the information quality. The integrity demanded from information is naturally dependent on the business scope in each company, so basically it is a company specific issue. When companies are exchanging information the information interoperability plays important role. The information that one company has handed over to another must be interoperable with the systems of the receiving company. This sets special demands for internal information management processes both to the delivering and receiving companies. Several enterprises are running internal information harmonization projects to improve their internal interoperability. At the same time they attend to different national and international standardization efforts to reach better external information interoperability.
The third issue, the key to get cooperation run smoothly with your business partners, is to define appropriate collaboration business processes. Basically, the success of the business depends heavily on the success of all business transactions including service work and even informal communication at the business interface. Collaboration is a business process that is simultaneously owned by at least two companies. Collaboration business rules should always be based on the commercial business agreement. If the essence of collaboration is not clearly assimilated by the companies, the detailed collaboration process definitions may entirely be missing. This will cause severe difficulties to the cooperation.