BAE Systems: An Agility Case Study

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SSG Insight and Agility helping to keep BAE Systems in Australia ship-shape

BAE Systems is a global defence and security company. For more than half a century, BAE Systems Australia has been designing, integrating and maintaining military systems for the Australian Defence Force. BAE Systems work to maximise Australian industry involvement in all their projects and activities.

The company delivers a full range of products and services for air, land, and naval forces, as well as advanced electronics, security, information technology solutions, and support services.

BAE Systems Australia has a workforce of around 6000 employees in 70 urban, regional and remote locations across the country. BAE Systems Williamstown is a major shipyard spread over 13.5 hectares. Based in southeastern Australia in the state of Victoria, it is home to around 960 people working on maritime contracts, designing and building warships and other vessels.

The business need

The maintenance team at BAE Systems Williamstown look after more than 10,000 assets throughout the site, each of which has to be serviced in line with strict schedules. There are also ad hoc jobs that crop up with breakdowns and general day-to-day working issues.

Being a shipbuilding construction site, there are a number of safety and security regulations that must be adhered to when working in specific areas of the site. These regulations must be kept up to date and the information passed to maintenance staff whenever there are changes.

BAE Systems Williamstown has worked with maintenance management system specialists SSG Insight for a number of years. Previously benefiting from using the IMPACTxp system, BAE Systems Williamstown wanted to refresh their maintenance management system to benefit from recent software developments.

The solution

After deciding to upgrade their facilities management software, and following a comprehensive process, the browser-based Agility system was chosen, particularly for its fresh look and ease of use. The system was implemented in 2009.

SSG Insight’s professional Agility engineers worked with BAE Systems to successfully migrate the data to the new system without losing any of the historical maintenance and asset data. And as new assets are bought, Agility’s simple interface allows bulk loading and removal of asset information to the system.

Agility was configured for this site so that when a job sheet is printed for any part of the site, an attachment detailing the current and specific safety regulations is printed out at the same time, making sure that the maintenance team has the most up to date information to hand.

The web browser-based system allows the team to access their maintenance data from any computer within BAE Systems site.

The Agility Portal system was also launched throughout BAE Systems Williamstown in 2010. This helpdesk function of the Agility system can be accessed by all BAE Systems Williamstown staff to report any breakdown or maintenance issues using BAE Systems’ own intranet. The information is fed directly into the Agility system and is programmed alongside the existing maintenance schedule.

Agility has been tailored to deliver BAE Systems’ specific reporting requirements, including health and safety compliance for the site.

The benefits

Paul Raymond, Asset Coordinator at BAE Systems Williamstown, said: “Agility has really improved the way the maintenance team carries out the breakdown jobs. The new system keeps a record of all breakdowns, prioritises the jobs and makes the most efficient arrangements of labour. The automated email notification system leaves the team with clear scheduling routines.

“We’ve been able to set up a work planner in such a way that we can track the historic use of labour, and use this data to help plan future maintenance of the site.

“Agility’s allowed us much more flexibility, reduced our paperwork and made allocating jobs to our engineers much more efficient,” Paul continued. “Being able to track the history of assets accurately is crucial to our business and the safety of the team on site.”

“The system’s made our work a lot easier,” said Phil Misfud from the maintenance crew. “The fact that staff can log issues through the intranet and that gets fed into the programme alongside our existing schedules helps to make sure that jobs don’t get missed off or wrongly prioritised.”

Next steps

Following the great success of BAE Systems Williamstown, other BAE Systems sites in Australia have implemented or are looking to use Agility. Two more sites, Henderson in Western Australia and Traralgon in Victoria, successfully started using Agility during 2011. Henderson is a simple replica of Williamstown’s model, while Traralgon is a completely different business model where Agility has been carefully customised to cater to their needs.


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