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How we saved our Client $20M with our robust decision analysis process
Site Fire Protection Optioneering study in North America which reduced costs, reduced risk, and improved programme optimisation through a proven decisions support approach.
Client information:

  • Sector(s): Nuclear

  • Type(s) of work: Environment & Waste, Optioneering & Analysis, Regulatory Support

  • Short description: An Optioneering case study involved DBD working collaboratively with an international client

The Client's challenge:
The challenge was to modify an existing, impaired fire response system within an operational facility, to meet changing regulatory requirements in a decommissioning context for our international Client.

The optimal solution had to meet several conflicting stakeholder preferences. For example, the budget holder’s preference was for a solution which offered the lowest Capital Expenditure (CAPEX), whereas the Regulator preference was for a solution which offered maximum code compliance.
The solution we delivered to our client:
DBD’s unique 12 step D2O process, coupled with our considerable engineering expertise, was used to solve the above challenge (see below):
How we saved our Client $20M with our robust decision analysis process
The project was undertaken in the following steps:

  • A Problem Definition Document(PDD) was produced to define the scope of the review and gain all stakeholders buy-in to the issue to be solved. As part of the PDD, a review of the local Fire Regulation requirements was undertaken to define compliant workforce protection within a regulatory context. A hazard appraisal was also carried out to determine the risk of fire initiation and fire spread; this, along with Regulatory requirements, was used to generate constraints which would bound the chosen option.

  • Based on the PDD, a list of success criteria was developed collaboratively with the Client. A paired comparison assessment was undertaken collaboratively with the Client to determine the importance (weightings) of the criteria.

  • DBD, in collaboration with the Client, organised a workshop to brainstorm a list of potential options for consideration.

  • The options were reviewed by independent fire protection experts against relevant code, suitable past practice and technical constraints (as identified earlier). Following this, an initial screening was undertaken; the remaining options were carried forward to the next subsequent stages of assessment.

  • DBD’s Engineers subsequently reviewed, and undertook a detailed study of each of the remaining options to facilitate scoring. This was submitted to the Client within a pre-scoring “information pack” which included the most up-to-date scoring (scoring) criteria.

  • Scoring of the options against the criteria was undertaken at a workshop organised by DBD; the workshop attendees consisted of a range of experts and stakeholders representing the Site Operators, Engineers, Fire Protection experts, local Government and Regulators. Notes were taken during the workshop to provide justifications for the assigned scores. Areas for sensitivity analysis were identified to reflect differing stakeholder views and criteria definitions.

  • DBD reviewed the workshop output, and subsequently analysed the data to rank the options; the three top scoring options were shortlisted. Sensitivity studies were undertaken to test the robustness of the shortlisted options. In addition, a risk review was undertaken to identify any foreseeable risks to the implementation of the options.

  • Following the review, DBD produced a final report which, suggested the top three options to provide alternative Fire Protection within the facility. The report was independently peer reviewed to test the validity of the study, prior to customer issue.

Results / Client benefits:

  • This study concluded that viable options exist for the provision of fire protection to the workers, the public, and the environment at significantly less Capital Expenditure (CAPEX) than originally envisaged.

  • As a result of this study, DBD have delivered estimated savings of up to GBP £15 million to the client.

  • The options proposed to the client offer the optimal solutions which balance all conflicting stakeholder requirements.

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