Cover: Industry Information Practices and the Failure to Remember

Industry Information Practices and the Failure to Remember

Published 1984

by Christopher W. Myers

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This paper draws together the results of three RAND Corporation studies that examined cost, schedule, and performance problems commonly encountered by pioneer chemical process plants; assessed the information policies and practices of 19 medium to large firms in the process industries; and analyzed the effects of certain management practices on project outcomes — cost, schedule, and performance — especially for pioneer plant projects. These studies found that few firms keep records on problems that occurred in startup, how they were resolved, and information relevant to understanding cost, schedule, and performance problems. As a result, many firms fail to capture fully the benefits of being technology pioneers. The studies also found that when project management used a team approach, sharing responsibility for project outcomes among R&D, process development, engineering, construction services, startup, and operations divisions, pioneer plants had shorter startup times and less cost growth.

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