Suncor’s director of maintenance and reliability shares how they are leveraging data to mitigate asset risk
—Sponsored article by Operational Excellence in Energy, Chemicals & Resources
Ahead of the operational Excellence in Energy, Chemicals & Resources, the IQPC team caught up with Leigh Mork, director of maintenance and reliability integration at Suncor Energy. In this exclusive interview Leigh gives an inside look into the company’s approach in mitigating asset risk and how to use asset information to enable safe, reliable and cost-effective operations.
Leigh, can you tell us a little bit more about your role at Suncor?
I look after M&R Integration, in the maintenance and reliability sphere. My job is to make sure that all the functions around maintaining reliable assets are integrated. I bring finance, HR, supply chain, as well as operations, maintenance, and technical groups to the table in order to discuss how we can better look at our assets.
How is Suncor using asset information to enable safe, reliable and cost effective operations?
As for asset information we’ve moved away from the traditional EPC recordkeeping. Things like PSM and the process safety information requirements have helped us to re-think at how we treat, address gaps and ultimately how we use asset information. Being more process safety-centric on information helps us focus on risk and cost, in a way that allows us to be objective; quantifiable versus subjective. The whole industry’s access to information has gotten much better. We really need to think about how we leverage technology. I came from an era where we used stick files and once a month it was updated. Now, I see engineers that are doing online updates to P&IDs with the plant operating, changing setpoints, changing safe operating limits on the fly. It’s really interesting watching what some of the new engineers can do with data.
Tell us more about Suncor’s asset management framework?
We have moved from being discipline and project-based around asset information to more assetcentric and data based. The traditional model has been: we get the drawing, do a takeoff of digital data and then we transcribe it into several different management systems, whether it’s controlling maintenance or costs etc. I think as we’ve migrated through digital transformation, we now focus on what we need to run the asset safely. I’m pulling information from vendors instead of taking what they’ve pushed into my sphere. The owners taking responsibility of what they need to operate is driving our approach to asset information.
How do you think the transition has been in terms of some more centric asset management?
The areas that have experienced a technical upset have embraced the transition because it provides them with the resources that they need. Most people don’t recognize what they’re missing until it’s too late. Learning from that, and not having it happen again, is kind of the hallmark of an operationally excellent company.
This interview was conducted in collaboration with the 2018 Operational Excellence in Energy, Chemicals & Resources Summit – taking place in Calgary this June 4-6. This executive-level event will bring together over 250 Maintenance and Reliability professionals and Operations leaders from Canada’s top energy, chemicals and resources companies to discuss the latest strategies to achieve the next level of efficiency and operational agility
The world class speaker line-up includes: ConocoPhillips, Royal Dutch Shell, Veolia, BP, SaskPower, Enbridge, Energy Safety Canada, Toronto Hydro, Cameron LNG, Irving Oil and many more – all presenting at the event and there to show you how to sharpen your competitive edge through asset management excellence.