Reducing errors in complex Plant and Instrumentation diagrams

The challenge

A leading power generation design company required assistance in improving their process of creating Plant and Instrumentation (P&I) diagrams. These diagrams are complex products, produced to meet the specific needs of an individual customer.

The difficulty was that the company’s diagrams were seldom completed on time, were difficult to understand and often contained technical errors. Our challenge was to help the client find a standard way of producing P&I diagrams that would overcome these problems.

How we helped

Our experience, in our own company, has shown that a high level of employee engagement is the only way to sustain a new process.

Using Lean techniques, we engaged with their design team, coaching them in mapping the process. This produced agreement on the optimum actions required to produce a diagram, and identified the necessary quality checks.

With our help, their engineers identified standard modules that would ensure consistent quality, with the flexibility needed for a customer’s individual requirements. These standard modules would also provide the basis for all future improvements.

The results

By using Lean methodology to create new processes, the following benefits were achieved:

  • All P&I diagrams are now produced in a standard way and are technically correct
  • Diagrams are now produced in 1.5 hours instead of one to one-and-a-half days, representing a dramatic improvement in production lead time
  • Drawing errors have also been reduced by 90%.