Project Execution Plan

To successfully complete any project, the scope of the project should reflect the vision of the goal it aims to achieve, and a plan is made to ensure that all aspects of the project are accounted for. Thorough comprehension of the requirements for project execution can enhance the chances for the successful implementation of the project. The project execution plan will change as the project progresses, especially as the design changes. Likely design changes include the following:

  • Resources and duration needs for the project;
  • Methods for developing and producing the proposed project solution;
  • Identification of significant work items;
  • Contingency plans for specific elements of the project;
  • Program optimization elements.

All necessary structures for a project are defined with a standard structure as the basis (top-down analysis). All project activities are then defined for the different elements, and a logical planning network is created. Following a time analysis, the project’s schedule is defined (bottom-up analysis). Once the project is established, monitoring and reporting will start and continue throughout the life cycle of the project.

Schedule Versions and Baseline Updates

To be able to control the project, two different reference versions of the schedule are stored for comparison purposes. These reference versions are defined as the original and baseline version. A current version is updated regularly, at least monthly, with new progress and forecast dates. All additionally approved work that changes the scope of the project (e.g., variation orders) is included in the current version. Baseline updating is carried out as required and each new version replaces the old baseline. An agreement is often in place between the client and the company for scheduling reviews of the project for this purpose. The bases for baseline updates are:

  • The previous baseline;
  • Variation orders issued up to the baseline cutoff that were not previously included;
  • Implementation of contract options that were not previously included.

Project Organization

Most projects are defined at the outset by a purpose and a set of contract obligations. For the execution of the project, a project organization is established that is responsible for fulfilling the contract obligations. The responsibilities of individuals handling the various project functions are discussed next.

Project Manager

The project manager is responsible for performing the project within the agreed time and budget according to the scope of work. The detailed work includes these tasks:

  • Organize the project in order to achieve the best possible cooperation between the involved sections.
  • Establish an order plan and a budget assisted by cost controls and structured according to the project schedule.
  • Make sure that the project plan is an integrated part of the total plan for the basis organization to ensure an on-time completion of milestones.
  • Report to the company according to the contract and give information about the progress or deviations within, but not limited to, planning,

technical solutions, procurement, manufacturing, economy, invoicing, legal conditions, and personnel conditions.

Deputy Project Manager

The deputy project manager assists the project manager with the tasks just described and executes the project manager’s tasks when he or she is out of the office. The deputy project manager reports to the project manager and has responsibility for oversight of other tasks as delegated by the project manager.

Lead Engineer

The lead engineer (known as the systems engineer in some organizations) has responsibility for the technical integration of the project and identifying the necessary skills for the project. She or he will play a primary role in defining the project’s deliver ables with the project’s customer. The lead engineer will also play a primary role in the technical development of the project once the project has started. In industry today, the function of the lead engineer is often combined with the function of project manager and handled by the same person.

Manufacturing Manager

The manufacturing manager is responsible for the following activities:

  • Manage the production team and equipment team to fulfill the required targets.
  • Plan for and control the stock of raw materials, work in progress, and finished goods.
  • Manage the efficiency, quality, cost, and safety of the production to meet the company’s target.
  • Conduct a related incentive program; work out the training plan for the employees and implement it.
  • Perform in-process inspections according to control instructions.
  • Control production scrap procedures.
  • Monitor the materials and logistics to ensure the project operates smoothly; control and improve the production scrap rate.
  • Report deviations from the schedule.
  • Monitor and implement a standardized management role for the production; make sure the manufacturing capacity meets the production requirements.
  • Manage operational activities.
  • Find and use advanced manufacturing technology, equipment, and fixtures in the project to upgrade the manufacturing ability and reduce manufacturing costs.

Cost and Finance Manager

The cost and finance manager is responsible for:

  • Analysis of manufacturing contribution margin, budget and forecast differences, and cost reduction plans;
  • Cost control of the project managing necessary foreign exchange
  • Providing assistance to the project manager and all project personnel in economical evaluations and decisions;
  • Development of standard costs;
  • Producing reports, including deviations, for internal use in cooperation with the project manager;
  • Monthly analysis of actual product cost versus standard costs.

Planning Manager

The planning manager cooperates closely with the project manager and is responsible for establishing and updating the main plan of the project and issuing reports in accordance with the requirements of the contract.

Quality Manager

The quality manager is responsible for:

  • Formulating and managing the development and implementation of goals, objectives, policies and procedures, and systems pertaining to QA and regulatory functions;
  • Verifying the functionality of the QA system according to specifications by performing reviews and audits;
  • Developing, implementing, communicating, and maintaining a quality plan to bring the company’s quality systems and policies into compliance

with quality system requirements;

  • Assisting the project manager and the project personnel in QA matters;
  • Managing documentation related to quality system guidelines;
  • Analyzing and reporting failure cost data;
  • Providing leadership for developing and directing QA and quality improvement initiatives (cost-of-quality reductions, audit system, etc.) for all products, processes, and services;
  • Coordinating health, safety, and environmental (HSE) matters according to the project’s HSE program.

Procurement Manager

The procurement program should be an integrated part of the project plan, and the procurement manager should report progress according to this plan. The procurement manager will place orders for all procured items for the project.


The secretary is responsible for document control, including archiving incoming and outgoing correspondence, tracking transmittals and documents throughout the review process, and assisting the project team with day-to-day tasks.

Contract Manager

The contract manager assists the project manager with contractual issues and establishing the project. The project manager has to operate in a complex organization that includes people from different professions, different departments, different companies, and other organizations. Even in the best circumstances, managing a project can be a difficult task. The project manager has to plan, organize, coordinate, communicate, lead, and motivate all participants to achieve a successful project outcome. In the typical project organization, all of these people must work together, but many will have no direct line responsibility to the project manager. The project manager is not responsible for their performance assessments, coaching and development, promotions, pay increases, welfare, and other line relationships. Project personnel have different loyalties and objectives, have probably never worked together before, and might never work together again. The one thing that binds them all together is the project organization structure. The project manager must, therefore, deal with the human problems of developing a project team out of the diverse groups working on the project. This involves complex relationships with managers in many departments and companies, not all of whom will be directly employed on the project. The temporary nature of project organizations allows insufficient time for interpersonal relationships to reach the static state possible in routine operations management. Good group performance is necessary from the beginning of a project, because it is difficult or even impossible to recover from mistakes made and time lost at the start. Also, the total management group on a project changes frequently, with new members joining and the roles of others diminishing as the project proceeds through its life cycle. In spite of all these disruptions and ifficulties, project managers must work under pressure to deliver their time, cost, and performance targets, which can require the application of pressure or other motivational measures on the people and groups involved.

Project Management

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Multidimensionality of Project Management

The project management personnel are responsible for effectively and efficiently implementing the project to agreed-on performance measures. Performance criteria are ultimately based on the requirements set out in the business case and project brief. The project management team is an agent of the development management activity zone, which is likely to consist of project management professionals. The project management team is ultimately responsible for preparing the project execution plan and ensuring that all relevant inputs from other activity zones are guided and integrated toward the successful implementation of the project. Project management is the process of managing, allocating, and timing resources in order to achieve a given objective in an expedient manner. The objective may be stated in terms of time, monetary, or technical results. Project management is used to achieve objectives by utilizing the combined capabilities of available resources. It represents a systematic execution of tasks needed to achieve project objectives. Project management covers the following basic functions:

  • Planning;
  • Organizing;
  • Scheduling;
  • Control.

Contracting Strategy

The actual contracting strategy for a project is a result of multiple contractor approaches. The managing team will direct these contractors to execute major project segments. An umbrella agreement may tie these contracts together for interface management, alignment, and common systems and controls. Each contractor will be able to subcontract suitable portions of the work scope. The project contract strategy is based on competitive bidding of both major contracts and purchase orders for free-issue equipment. Another key strategy is the decision of the project team to design certain elements, such as the manifold and the jumper systems, in house. To continue the example, key components of these systems can then be free-issued to a manifold fabricator. Fabrication of the manifold is negotiated with, say, the successful supplier of the valves and connection systems, thereby reducing interfaces and potential construction errors and delays. Two primary reasons to do this are to allow the team to maintain better control over the multiple interfaces involving hardware suppliers and internal interfaces involving drilling and installation and to take advantage of having the technical expertise to do the design work available in house.

Quality Assurance

The project has different phases representing different milestones toward completion; some phases are scheduled in parallel and some in series. Throughout these phases, the project team monitors progress and reports to the company according to the contract. Deviations are analyzed and treated according to a designated QA system. The project team then executes corrective actions. The contracting party that will complete the work should have and maintain a QA system to ensure that products and services are delivered according to the agreed-on specifications as well as statutory requirements, thereby satisfying the needs of customers and internal users. The term quality assurance system refers to a formal anagement system you can use to strengthen your organization. It is intended to raise standards of work and to make sure everything is done consistently. A QA system sets out the expectations that a quality organization should meet. Typically, organizations implement a QA system for these purposes:

  • To agree on standards, which are concerned with the performance that staff, trustees, and users expect from the organization.
  • To carry out a self-assessment, which means that the project team’s performance is compared to the expectations set by the standards.
  • To draw up an action plan, which includes what needs to be done, who will do it, how it will be done, and when.
  • To implement and do the work.
  • To conduct a review, during which the project team determines what changes have been made and whether they have made the difference the team was hoping to achieve.

The practice applied to all activities leading to delivery of products or services should be: “Perform all activities according to established requirements, and when changes are applicable, a formal change approval procedure should be followed.” The project management team will actively support the quality manager and the quality department in its overall monitoring and auditing of the system, of both the contracted and subcontracted parties, to ensure compliance with requirements. Audit results should be reported to the top management as appropriate. A number of challenges arise when planning and executing a quality program (QP) for a project. For a subsea systems group, the key challenge is often the extreme geographical spread of contractors and vendors. The QA philosophy at the start of the project is to rely on project contractors’ existing QPs, based on ISO-9001 and the development of specific quality plans, which include production, inspection, and test procedures. Initially the role of QA and quality control programs is to function as a monitoring overseer, but as the project progresses, increased levels of surveillance are required in congruence with the increased complexity of the project as it matures. The quality team of the subsea group for the project consists of a QA coordinator and a quality engineer (QE), who report to the subsea manager. The responsibilities of the QA coordinator are to develop and oversee the implementation of the QP and associated procedures and to conduct internal and external quality audits. The quality engineer is responsible for the daily interfacing with third-party inspectors and the monitoring of contractor and vendor inspection and test plan implementations. The third-party inspectors are selected based on the vendor inspection execution plan criteria jointly prepared by the discipline lead engineers and the QE. The basic inspection personnel contracting philosophy is to employ cognizant and capable inspectors by geographic area instead of using a blanket agreement with an inspection agency. The QP is intended to cover all aspects of a subsea system group’s involvement in the project and to complement the general quality management system established by the project services. It is also used to ensure that the change guidelines are followed by the project.

Systems Integration Manufacturing and Testing

Quality management of the manufacture and testing of all subsea equipment should rigorously follow the project’s QA plan. The criticality of the equipment and the high cost of subsequent repairs require a level of inspection disproportionate to the cost of the equipment. A robust organization staffing plan is needed to ensure that resources are available to support the quality management activities and to ensure that the required inspection and test requirements are delivered. The project’s team members should be assigned specific accountability for the manufacture and delivery of each subsea component and ensure that the required level of inspection and monitoring takes place. Subsea systems consist of a large number of unique components, which makes overall status monitoring difficult to achieve and the performance management system must be designed to take this into account. The project plan must recognize that many subsea items may be delivered close to the time period designated for installation and, hence, contingency plans should be identified. The contingency plans are prepared to satisfy customer requirements in the event of an emergency such as utility interruptions, labor shortages, key equipment failures, or field returns. The manufacturing schedule must allow sufficient time for stack up and integrated system testing and rectification of failures prior to installation. Planners must ensure that the necessary testing and dummy equipment will be available for testing. The systems integration testing (SIT) program is designed to be thorough, with the objective of testing each installation and operational feature on land before going offshore. Better preparation on land and a high degree of testing will result in an efficient installation and smooth start-up once the system is moved offshore. The SIT is conducted at the manifold fabricator’s yard and is completed in two phases. The first phase consists of performing all of the mechanical interfaces between the pipeline end manifolds, suction piles, manifolds, and subsea trees. One size of each flowline and well jumper is fabricated and tested with the maximum or worst case tolerance stack-ups confirmed. The second phase of the SIT involves the integration of the production control system with the manifolds, trees, and flying leads. The overall planning and execution of the SIT is the responsibility of the subsea systems group. The planning effort involves the development of a SIT plan that identifies the scope of work, detailed test procedures, equipment testing and handling requirements, personnel requirements, schedule and cost controls, and safety practices. During the execution of the SIT, the fabricator essentially provides only labor, equipment, and facilities, with all detailed procedures, schedules, control budgets, and day-to-day activities provided and directed by the integrated project team and executed by the SIT coordinator. The contractor scope of work is executed under a time and materials contract. The SIT is staffed with a full-time subsea systems team and peaks at four individuals during execution of the SIT. During the course of the SIT program, representatives from the installation and drilling groups, installation contractors, and operations personnel are invited to witness and participate in the actual SIT tests. This will help to familiarize the various parties with the equipment and allow for hands-on training to occur. It is desirable to have a significant amount of expertise within the subsea group that helps plan and execute a successful SIT program. It is extremely important to have the right personnel involved during the execution of the SIT (subsea, operations, and installation personnel) and to get started as early as possible in the planning stages.


The installation activities are major project events and require detailed planning and management. The project manager must ensure that a planning and interface management process is in place among the engineering team, installation team, installation contractor, and facility fabrication team. The management of installation activities is a specialized activity and requires specific knowledge and competence within the team. Preparation activities for the management of an installation include the following:

  • Determine the load-out and installation method during FEED because this has a significant impact on facility design.
  • Engage the installation procurement and supply chain management (PSCM) sector teams in leveraging the company’s scope and scale.
  • Ensure that the installation method is matched to available installation vessels and to the PSCM strategy with early lock-in of vessels to ensure

availability when required.

  • Ensure that, through early engagement of the installation contractor, the installation requirements are integrated with the facility’s design. There

is a tendency for installation contractors to review the facility late in the design or construction process. This can result in redesign and construction rework.

  • Appoint an installation manager ahead of the development of the detailed installation strategy to manage the proposed installation activities

and installation contract. The following planning activities also must be considered:

  • Ensure that timely detailed design reviews are undertaken between the engineering, installation and construction teams to ensure full alignment

prior to start of activities.

  • Initiate a peer review of the proposed installation design and methodology.
  • Ensure detailed walk-throughs of the installation procedures have been carried out by the installation team prior to implementation.
  • Implement a go/no go process to confirm that all requirements are in place prior to execution of load-out, sailaway, and installation.

Ensure that accountability for the approval to proceed is absolutely defined.

  • Ensure that appropriate metocean and weather forecasting expertise is available to support installation planning and go/no go processes. The installation of subsea equipment is the overall responsibility of the installation group that functions as a subgroup within the construction group.

The installation group’s responsibilities consist primarily of negotiating, contracting, coordinating, scheduling, and budget controlling of the various contractors that will perform the subsea installation activities. This organization captures the synergies of optimizing vessel utilization, field safety, and overall construction management across the entire two-field installation campaigns. The technical responsibility still resides within the subsea group for providing technical input, review, and endorsement of contractor installation procedures and detailed testing instructions. Overall, an organizational structure like that described can be successful in installing the subsea equipment with significant cost savings realized by the project. Identifying and selecting the installation contractors as early as possible allows for early input into subsea equipment designs as well as the development of early installation options and details. It also allows for any issues or risks associated with an installation to be identified. The installation risk assessments are also conducted for the primary components and have proven invaluable in the planning phase, where key issues and potential gaps are identified and resolution plans implemented prior to the offshore execution of the work.

Process Management

Process management is an agent of the development management activity zone that is responsible for planning and monitoring each phase. The responsibilities of process management include:

  • Formulating the process execution plan in close collaboration with the project management team;
  • Reviewing the phase review plans and reports;
  • Determining and examining the inputs and outputs of the process in terms of the deliverables at each phase;
  • Offering expert recommendations to the development management activity zone with regard to the satisfactory execution of the process for

delivery of the product. The process management activity zone should consist of professionals who are independent of the project.

HSE Management

HSE Philosophy

The protection of health and ensuring safety and conservation of the environment, apart from being subject to legislation, constitute assets and provide added value to any project. As a philosophy, awareness of them as essential and integral parts of products and services is necessary. The health, safety, and environmental (HSE) philosophy should function as the overall guideline for ensuring safety within a project. The project team should aim at achieving technical and operational integrity as far as practically and economically feasible in connection with engineering, design, procurement, manufacturing, termination work, and testing.

HSE Management Plan

Achieving the goals of no accidents, no harm to people, and no damage to the environment requires planning that is commensurate with the scale and complexity of a project. An HSE management plan is created to ensure safe and environmentally responsible operations throughout the design, construction, fabrication, installation, and operating phases. An HSE management plan provides the information needed to enable the entire project team, including contractors and others, to understand how HSE concerns and issues are identified, eliminated, mitigated, or managed, and how accountabilities are established at various levels of management. It is also used as an HSE training tool for members of the project team. The objectives of the HSE management plan are as follows:

  • To clearly state the project HSE objectives and expectations and provide a tool for the project team to use in achieving them.
  • To detail the project organization, responsibilities, and methods of management control as they relate to HSE.
  • To identify the HSE studies and deliverables.
  • To specify the HSE-related reviews and audits to be performed and their timing.


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