Friday, 2 November 2012

Suretank selects Autodesk PLM 360

Suretank Ltd. is a world leading manufacturer of CCU’s (Cargo Carrying Units) for the Offshore Oil Industry and now new users of Autodesk PLM 360.

Established 1995 in Ireland to supply the North Sea, the company is a global supplier with design and manufacturing facilities in Ireland, UK, Poland, Thailand and China as well as sales offices in USA, Norway and Brazil. Suretank’s product range includes Chemicaland Acid transport tanks, Helifuel tanks, offshore Containers, Baskets, Mudskips and Cryogenic tanks.

Suretank Horizontal Chemical Tanks

Suretank’s customer base includes most of the major service, rental, exploration and production companies in the offshore industry. Their units are found worldwide in places such as the North Sea, West Africa, Gulf of Mexico, Brazil, Caspian, Sakhalin sea, India, Australia, Middle East and the Far East.

Manufacturing & Delivering Products Worldwide

Further from Thailand to The North Sea, from Poland to the People’s Republic of China, Suretank have designed, manufactured and installed specialist CCU tanks for some of the world’s leading oil producing companies.

No mean feat you might say, but what really sets them apart is the fact that they also have engineers working on the ground in all of the areas they supply. This ensures that they can provide the highest level of service and advice to their customers, whenever they need it and wherever they might be.
SC 2000 is a robust T75 tank used to transport bulk cryogenic liquids to offshore rigs

So this week I met up with David Keeley, Engineering Manager for Suretank to discuss Autodesk PLM 360 and how they are getting on.

Mike: Hi David, tell me about your experience with Autodesk PLM 360. So far, what are your thoughts, first impressions?

David: Hi Mike. Having used some other PLM solutions before I was probably a little bit cynical about some of the things that Autodesk was saying PLM 360 could do 'out of the box' with no customisation and minimal configuration. That cynicism was gone within about an hour of starting to use the system. There was a real 'wow' experience as the value opportunities for Suretank became immediately obvious. It was the same for all of the other people in the workshop I attended. Even though we were all from different industries with different needs and problems, within a few hours everyone started talking about how PLM 360 could be used to solve their own particular problems. It's a very powerful solution.

Mike: Thanks David! Really great to hear your comments. Can you tell me about some of the processes that you're going manage in Autodesk PLM 360?

David: Initially we're going to concentrate on the Engineering and Quality functions in the Dunleer (Ireland) facility. Over time we'll implement the system to perform other functions and at all the other global sites. It's important that we first tackle the areas where PLM 360 can provide the most value for Suretank. A good example is our 'Sales Handover' process. The 'Sales Handover' is the specification document that Sales issues to Engineering at the start of a new contract. The data in the document is used to create a more comprehensive and detailed 'Technical Specification'. At the moment, this part of the process involves significant manual data re-entry. PLM 360 will eliminate this. Additionally there will be a more robust change process around these items so that we're always dealing with the latest customer requirements. PLM 360 also allows us to create processes and 'forms' that exactly match how we're doing things now. Except that now in PLM 360 it will be controlled, more efficient, traceable and repeatable. This will make the transition much easier for internal stakeholders. 

Mike: How have you found the cloud based and configurable nature of Autodesk PLM 360?

David: We're already using some 'cloud' applications in Suretank. Eventually PLM 360 will replace most of them. There's little resistance to cloud-based applications now. There certainly hasn't been any within Suretank as everyone can see how a cloud based solution fits perfectly within our global organisation. As I said earlier, I have some experience with other PLM systems and I'm delighted not to have to deal with the pains that accompany hosting a large PLM system on a local server!! With respect to the 'configurable' nature of PLM 360 - I think I read somewhere that Autodesk has described the system as 'insanely configurable'? I think that's about right. It's very flexible while remaining intuitive and easy to use. There's still some things that I'd like to see added but the product development team have been very responsive to my requests.

Mike: Thanks David, looking at the No.1 image above I'm really excited to work with you over the coming months, and making sure that the 8th reason for you being on top is the use of Autodesk PLM 360! Look forward to catching up soon.

Thanks for reading...Mike