AVEVA World Magazine 2012|Issue 227Leading from the frontHow AVEVA MARS resource management software helped create a world-class shipbuilding business from a standing startOne of the most exhilarating aspects of working with rapidly developing economies such as China is their open-minded approach to adopting the best available technologies when establishing new businesses. The result is that these businesses begin life immediately able to compete strongly in the global marketplace. An excellent recent example of this is Guangxin Shipbuilding & Heavy Industry (GSHI), a Chinese-foreign joint venture specialising in the design and construction of offshore vessels and other special-purpose ships. GSHI started operations at the end of March 2009, delivering its first vessel, an 11,000-tonne salt carrier, in early December of the same year. This excellent performance on its first project was due in part to GSHI's use of AVEVA's marine engineering and design solution but, even before this project commenced, GSHI's management had already been looking ahead to streamlining its business processes with a fully integrated shipbuilding solution. As a result, in August 2011, the company implemented AVEVA MARS Material.Selecting AVEVA MARSGSHI understood from the outset that it would take more than just advanced machinery and facilities to make it a world-class shipyard; the right Enterprise Resource Management (ERM) information system would play at least as important a role. Mr JieNing Ma, Head of IT at GSHI, explained, 'We needed to make strategic decisions on human, finance, material and information resources even before the shipyard began to be built, as well as during its construction. This was particularly true in the case of the IT system. As a key strategic investment, it was vital that it should support the overall company strategy, which reflected the high expectations and in-depth commitment of the management.'Wang HuaWei Senior Business Development Manager - Marine, AVEVAGuangxin Shipbuilding & Heavy Industries (GSHI) is located in the Linhai Industrial Park, Zhongshan, China. Photograph courtesy of GSHI.www.aveva.com/45years
Mr Ma continued, 'When we started construction of the shipyard, we defined the company objective as, To build a world-renowned offshore enterprise with leading technology, excellent management and superlative efficiency. One of our main tasks was to choose a system able to handle all the major workflows of a modern shipbuilder. We needed a proven system, supported by an experienced implementation team who could help us to standardise workflows and management processes during the deployment of the IT system. From our initial objective of optimising modern methods of shipbuilding through the use of Information Technology, we will gradually perfect our desired information and industrialisation strategy.'GSHI was meticulous in identifying potential solutions for evaluation. After having shortlisted and compared AVEVA MARS and two other ERM applications, GSHI decided to further evaluate AVEVA MARS. They were particularly impressed with the way in which AVEVA MARS has been designed by marine experts specifically for shipbuilding, and how it can handle all the core business processes of a shipyard.'We had to be fully convinced that MARS could meet our requirements before committing to it,' said Mr Ma. 'In the months following our initial evaluation, we held many meetings with AVEVA's consultants who presented to us the detailed features, management concepts and business workflows supported by MARS. These demonstrations were essential to us because the information system would become the company's core business system.'GSHI followed up this evaluation process by visiting other MARS customers in China, before finally deciding on its acquisition. 'We selected AVEVA's solution for two main reasons,' continued Mr Ma. 'First, MARS is a specialised system with a lot of built-in shipbuilding expertise, covering all of a shipyard's core business processes and workflows. Second, AVEVA China has a very experienced implementation team, able to provide a local consultation service and highly responsive technical support. This is extremely important to us,' he emphasised.DeploymentGSHI began its AVEVA MARS deployment with the Material management application. Implementation began by the end of February 2011, with a project team consisting of AVEVA consultants working closely with GSHI's material, engineering, marketing, and finance departments. After the introduction of the new technology, this team combined the new management systems with their knowledge of the industry. They defined and standardised material statement and coding rules, material purchasing and stock handling flows, and operation of non-ship material requisition, progressively streamlining all the various workflows. AVEVA MARS went live at GSHI on August 8th, 2011, a speed of deployment which owes as much to the commitment of the joint AVEVA/GSHI team as it does to the maturity of the application itself. 'We are not simply adopting a software application; we are looking at the deployment of a strategic management system. So we must continue to enhance and develop our systems throughout the execution of the project,' Mr Ma added.'We selected AVEVA's solution for two main reasons. First, MARS is a specialised system with a lot of built-in shipbuilding expertise, covering all of a shipyard's core business processes and workflows. Second, AVEVA China has a very experienced implementation team, able to provide a local consultation service and highly responsive technical support. This is extremely important to us...'28AVEVA World Magazine 2012|Issue 2The bunker barge, Anlong, was designed and built using AVEVA technology. Photograph courtesy of GSHI.