It’s no secret that we as an industry are in the midst of a challenging economic cycle. Across the board, the pressure is on – all participants in the asset value chain (owner operator, EPC, fabricator, or other suppliers) must be squarely focused on eliminating unnecessary overheads and maximising value.
Depending on your role in the project life cycle, there are many ways you can accomplish this. However, for EPCs – especially design engineering firms, who only get paid when they supply the client with accurate and complete drawings and other deliverables – I believe that the importance of tools that automate the production of those deliverables cannot be underestimated. Eliminating the need to manually produce deliverables significantly reduces fabrication and on-site construction errors.
I have worked with many smaller EPCs over the past few years to develop customised plant design systems and given that experience, I always recommend any engineering company to consider the following two simple rules:
- Even in today’s 3D world, annotated and dimensioned orthographic drawings are still a required deliverable (ie, 2D plans, sections and elevationss drawings). Make sure you select a design system that has the functionality to automate the process of producing 2D deliverables from your 3D models – this will reduce the process from hours to minutes.
- No matter what your 3D design system, you must ensure it comes bundled with a tool to automate the production of piping isometric drawings. Piping is always going to be the most complex part of any project, and producing these deliverables manually has the potential to turn into a logistical nightmare. Isogen is the industry standard here – most piping design solution vendors bundle it with their product.
Keep these rules in mind when selecting a design system for your next project and you will be well on the way to providing your client with the complete and accurate engineering deliverables that they demand.