Care, custody, and control of project related assets fall to procurement at the onset of a project. The procurement team must track shipments from suppliers, define/ensure how the shipments are packaged for transport. Next, they arrange for receiving/warehousing once items arrive to the project. Then they not only oversee the inspection of items upon arrival but maintain proper storage conditions during storage, arrange for ongoing inspections of critical items during storage and laydown. And finally arrange transportation to the construction site when items are requested.
Digital Supply Chain: Procurement teams are utilizing digital supply chain programs more often these days to manage project related items/assets. Digital supply chain programs allows for tracking of shipments, documentation receipt inspections damaged items, maintenance/storage protocols requirements, warehouse and storage inventories, and material requests by construction. RFID tagging/bar coding of items is critical to the procurement team to optimize and efficiently track thousands and thousands of items.
Supplier/sub-contractor requirements: The procurement team must ensure that all supplier documentation including drawings, records, and procedures (maintenance instructions), spare identification, etc. are submitted prior to authorizing a release to ship. Critical/tagged items requiring supplier quality inspections before shipping should be defined and completed BEFORE preparation.
Packing, Storage and Preservation: Before items are shipped, a detailed packing, storage and preservation procedure should be submitted for each supplier. This should be detailing factory packing methodology for equipment during transit and long-term storage. As we recommended storage requirements for supplied items and equipment, and maintenance activities required to maintain equipment integrity and warranty. The responsible engineer associated with the purchase order should ensure suppliers define “REAL WORLD” storage recommendations as inside storage/warehousing is limited on each project. Specific corrosion requirements shall be defined/implemented for mechanical equipment, air coolers, vessels, electrical equipment, instrumentation, valves, etc. before packing/shipping activities are completed. Domestic and Export requirements are paramount when containerization is not practical. The type of wood used for crates should be defined as any type of particleboard and OSB is not acceptable. Nails, staples, and the type of bolts are often overlooked but should be defined/agreed prior to shipping. Internal crate packing materials should also be specified by the supplier and agreed to by the procurement team. Heavy and oversized loads should be noted along with any special lifting and rigging requirements. Marking/stenciling requirements for containers and crates is also critical and must be defined. Crates with special tools and spare parts should be clearly marked with the words “spare parts” or “tools”. Fumigation is often required for export shipping. Requiring a copy of the fumigation certificate before shipping is not only a best practice but is often a customs requirement.
Transportation and Logistics: Tracking shipping numbers/information, freight forwarding arrangements for trucking, air/ocean freight need to be arranged in advance to ensure items arrive at the project site before needed. When arranging T&L specifics, special attention should be given to hazardous materials, heavy and overside loads, specific lifting and lashing points, softeners, cradles, and special rigging requirements to name a few.