Perfection vs Progress

Perfection vs Progress

Hard performance hurdles work best where labor is suitably skilled, in Developing Countries great results are achieved as an evolution.

In some project locations, think developing countries, it is unreasonable to institute a more rigid quality approach, that might otherwise be very effective in developed country.  This is simple recognition that regional labor is sometimes very undertrained in their craft, or untrained.  Typically, relatively few have any high-quality experiences in the past to rely on as a performance benchmark.  They simply have no idea how to properly perform tasks, but can “put things together” with their can-do ingenuity.

To make matters worse, some EPC Contractors have a habit of managing from the office and are not attendant to the details of their subcontractors.  This can be a very tough set of circumstances to implement a quality focus!

It is best in such circumstances for an owner to start early with a quality focus, but to approach the challenge as an incremental effort to improve.  If a go no-go mentality is initiated, it will be so foreign that the resistance by the regional craft will be insurmountable and an effort to bring them along will fail.  Progress, not Perfection, is far better in these cases.

With an approach that starts slow and focusses on “must haves”, meaningful results can be achieved.  Projects in very difficult locations can turn out vastly improved using this approach over similar projects in the region.  This is enormously beneficial for the life-cycle value of the asset.  For an owner this is not easy, but well worth the effort and time investment.

SLATE is ideal for such circumstances, because it places an immediate feedback mechanism in the hands of the participants.  In most cases, under- skilled craft do want to improve, and if an inspector takes the time to share examples of proper methods, improvement can come quickly.  However, no improvement can be made if the approach starts off feeling punitive.

Using this approach, a contractor can save significant amounts of rework and an owner can be sure the priorities are met, while perhaps putting less deficiencies on a punch list later for resolution.

It is important for an owner to have a strategy for assisting and supporting an EPC Contractor so that they overachieve for you.  SLATE is an ideal platform for leading a contractor down the path of project success.