Tech Talks

The Key to a Successful Engineering Project

We are often asked what methods we use to create engineering designs for our clients. Inevitably, each project is unique, but all designs share common traits.

Each design must:

  • Be delivered on schedule
  • Be completed under budget
  • Fulfill the expectations of the client

The key to fulfilling the items above is to develop an accurate and detailed Engineering Project Specification.

An important part of our service includes the generation of a specification that clearly defines the project. We meet with the client, discuss their goals, evaluate their technical objectives and create a document that accurately reflects the scope of their project and the deliverables provided by Sverdrup Engineering Services.

This is a critical phase for the successful completion of the project. This method is our way of ensuring that we understand exactly what the client wants, needs and expects from us.

Many times, this has the added benefit of helping the client in defining the scope of the project.

The document begins by stating and clarifying the technical and general operational goals of the project.

It explains the process verbally and defines the systems and subsystems that are critical to success, listing the major pieces of equipment within the system.

After we have determined how the completed system will work, we address other aspects of the project.

Safety issues and practices, whether they concern personnel safety or equipment safety, are included in the specification.

All standards to which we must comply, such as the NEC, NFPA, MSHA, OSHA, etc., are formally listed in the specification.

Preferred vendors are also listed in the document. For example, a client may have standardized on Allen-Bradley motor control centers. We need to know that before we generate any drawings.

We address any request for start-up assistance that the client requires.

We typically provide training and equipment operation procedures, and a commitment to provide those services is included in the specification.

Budgetary issues and schedule constraints are addressed. The frequency of design reviews are included.

We also understand that things can change, and that sometimes this is beyond the client’s control. We provide an avenue within the specification to revise the project specification and accommodate changes in scope or procedure.

In addition, we exchange contact information with the client, including email addressees, phone numbers and FTP sites used to transfer documents. We make sure that we know all key players representing the client, and that the client is aware of who can best answer their questions within our organization.

We want a solid and reliable line of communication between our company and the client. We want a smooth relationship.

Please feel free to contact us with any comments or questions you may have. We welcome your input.