In the Netherlands TAQA are a producer of gas and an operator of two gas storages. In Alkmaar the company operates and co-owns two underground gas storages called the Piekgasinstallatie and Gasopslag Bergermeer, which is the largest freely accessible gas storage in Western-Europe. Next to gas extraction in the region of Alkmaar, which is expected to terminate in 2024, the company is also active in gas production in the Nord Sea with several production platforms and a treatment facility
For the optimization of maintenance and maintenance plans it was essential to have a clear insight into up-to-date information from all available sources. Especially for the SECE’s it is vital that information from different sources can be brought together in clear overviews. This requires business intelligence, meaning accurate information through a well-designed business information system. Jeroen Roodenburg, Maintenance Engineer at VectorMM, explains: “To achieve this, they wanted to work with BI-Cycle, a business intelligence tool that was already used at TAQA in the UK. The maintenance manager thought this to be a suitable solution for TAQA Nederland. Due to my experience with BI-Cycle at another operator, I took on this project at TAQA.”
BI-Cycle for Business Intelligence
BI-Cycle is the name of a software product from a vendor with the same name. The software is specifically suitable for companies with high requirements for the reliability of their data. BI-Cycle is typically used at companies that already work with separate complex systems and data structures. The software ensures accurate merging and editing of raw data from different sources as well as clear presentation in overviews and reports. VectorMM has the expertise to integrate this tool into the existing systems from customers.
Jeroen: “One of the issues was that there was no centralized processing and presentation of the available data. The lack of central insight into specific processes made it quite difficult to further optimize the maintenance. Apart from the questions that rose from this challenge, it also turned out that the quality of the source data was falling short. To close the gap, the requirements for the reporting of maintenance tasks have been tightened up”.
To make BI-Cycle work effectively it was essential to work back from daily practice in maintenance in order to establish unambiguity and consistency in the data. In definitions and working instructions as well as in the reporting of data in reports. “Different teams used their own specific jargon and ways of working, while from IT-side there were also different systems in use. We really had to go step by step through the maintenance organization, which ultimately resulted in optimization across the complete chain. All to get useful, accurate input for the BI-Cycle tool”, Jeroen adds.
Next to more efficient monitoring of the SECE’s, the team also implemented a work load forecast. This helped TAQA to change from continuous deployment to campaign-based maintenance, which in their specific case resulted in reduced costs and increased efficiency. Jeroen Roodenburg: “We will continue with the customization of standard dashboards for different users who in this way will have more information and insights into the processes that fall under their responsibility.”
- Centralized information from multiple sources
- Ability to make fact-based decisions
- Huge time saving in getting insights
- Ad hoc questions can be handled faster and easier
- Significantly improved insight in safety risks
- Ability to set the right priorities in maintenance