IPA's Capital Solutions group provides real-world solutions for capital project systems.

Consulting and implementation services for capital project systems

IPA Capital Solutions applies IPA’s extensive knowledge of capital projects and project systems to collaboratively develop and implement client solutions.

 

What We Do

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The purpose of capital project investment is to deliver maximum value to shareholders. Selecting the right investments and executing those investments effectively drives long-term competitive advantage and supports innovation, business value, and profitability. 

Getting all necessary elements of the complex project system—organizations, processes, skills, and accountability—in place and working together effectively to achieve these goals is exceedingly challenging.

IPA is the leading organization to diagnose the core issues that prevent the system from working at its best. Companies rely on IPA’s robust databases of more than 17,000 capital projects collected over almost 30 years to provide a data-based knowledge of project systems.

IPA Capital Solutions collaborates with its clients to develop and implement practical and powerful tailored solutions to bring the necessary elements into alignment in a system that makes sense for each company. Our solutions are not theoretical—they are based on data and actual systems that have been implemented and are driving desired results.

We partner with clients to build the capability to deliver maximum value. And, we leave our clients with a baseline and a scorecard to measure performance over time.

 

Our Focus

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We derive our deep understanding of the drivers of capital project success from:

  • IPA’s projects database of more than 17,000 projects performed by more than 300 companies globally
  • IPA’s organizational and system databases describing over 80 owner company approaches to personnel deployment, work process, and governance and gatekeeping for capital projects
  • Nearly 30 years of working directly with our clients’ project organizations to measure performance and drive improvements through data-based benchmarking and research

Capital project systems are different from normal business operations. The rules that govern successful business operations do not apply. That is why general management consulting firms, while able to effectively address and implement improvement efforts across a wide range of business issues, struggle when applying those same approaches to capital project systems.

Capital projects that routinely deliver value to their businesses are produced by a carefully balanced development and delivery project system. Capital projects need to keep three elements in balance:

  • A governance structure that creates the checks and balances that drive value-maximizing decision-making. Value-maximizing decision-making means that uncertainty, the perspective of key stakeholders, and risk to reward trade-offs are carefully analyzed and factored into decisions
  • A project development process that incorporates global Best Practices but is not so bureaucratic and burdensome that it takes forever to complete a project or rigid that changes are never allowed
  • A system supported by a project management organization that delivers functional excellence and can handle the peaks and valleys of the capital spending cycle

IPA Capital Solutions’ sole focus is on project systems and helping our clients to define and implement the changes needed to make their systems successful. We understand all elements needed to keep a project system in balance and produce competitive advantages for our clients. We also apply the principles of change management to our work to ensure our clients realize the full benefit from the improvements.

Our Approach

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The Basis of Our Approach

Our solutions are grounded in the knowledge and experience of IPA personnel gained from 30 years of client engagement and project research and benchmarking. Our clients benefit from IPA’s:

  • Breadth of Knowledge
    • IPA Capital Solutions offers holistic understanding of the entire project system
    • Our understanding of process starts with the origins of projects—from initiation to business case development, carries through to project development and planning, continues with project execution and startup, and extends further into operability and ultimate value obtained
    • Our understanding of organizations builds from individual competencies, to effective project, and to the system level
    • Our understanding of the “how to” ranges from the specific tools, templates, and data; to procedures and methodologies; and to the overall governing processes the system operates under
  • Depth of Knowledge
    • IPA Capital Solutions calls on the most extensive database of capital projects, systems, and organizational performance in existence
    • We have access to cutting edge research on projects, project systems, processes, and organizations
    • We know the methods, tools, processes, and organizations that work in practice
    • Our models of systems are based on real-world performance
  • History
    • We have diagnosed, supported, and measured 300+ project organizations embarking on continuous improvement efforts over 30 years. No one else has this view

Our Solutions

Developing KPIs for Manufacturing Sites

A client's exisiting KPIs failed to measure leading and lagging indicators and drove wrong behaviors. Using client and IPA data to provide specific, meaningful comparision ranges, IPA Capital Solutions developed a suite of KPIs to drive improvement. As a result, client sites have achieved "Most Improved" in Industry 4X since adoption.

 


Implementing Project Sponsor Role

A client experienced frequent late changes to and recycle of projects during definition phase. IPA Capital Solutions determined that a stron project sponsor role was needed to establish accountability. IPA Capital Solutions developed the project sponsor job description and coached newly assigned sponsors, and as a result, the first two projects with the new role in place have shown improvement.

 


Developing Best-In-Class FEL 3 Packages

A client's existing process precluded the development of Best-In-Class Basic Design, Cost Estimate/Schedule, and Contracting Strategies. By analyzing and redesigning each work process, interfaces, responsibilities, and accountability, IPA Capital Solutions developed new processes and a suite of KPIs to drive improvement. Upper management has provided full support and work processes are now being deployed across the company and expanded to other project areas.

 


Re-Align Project Management Organization With Reduced Capital Spend

A client's PMO was too large for reduced capital spend. IPA Capital Solutions collaborated with the client to develop organization design and staffing levels. This enabled the client to reorganize while maintaining functional capability.

 

 

Key Contacts

Paul Barshop

Paul Barshop
Director, IPA Capital Solutions

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Paul is a Director of IPA Capital Solutions. He provides support to clients implementing changes to their capital project development and delivery systems to improve performance.

Paul was IPA’s Chief Operating Officer from 2004 to 2015. He previously served as Director of IPA’s Netherlands Office from 2000 to 2004, serving European and Middle Eastern clients. Paul joined IPA in 1994. In his early years at IPA, he served as Quality Manager and Project Analyst.

Paul is the author of Capital Projects: How Executives Can Avoid Costly Mistakes and Make Their Major Investments Pay Off, published by John Wiley & Sons in September 2016.

 


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Allison J. Aschman, Ph.D
Director, IPA Capital Solutions

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Allison is a Director of IPA Capital Solutions. She works collaboratively with IPA clients to develop and implement real working solutions to achieve maximum value from capital project investment.

Allison was IPA's Asia-Pacific Regional Director from 2009 to 2015. In that role, she gained an in-depth understanding of the most pressing issues regarding capital project investment for companies throughout Asia and Australia. She previously served as manager for IPA's Chemicals and Life Sciences business unit from 2003 to 2009. Allison has led numerous benchmarking studies, individual project evaluations, training workshops, and "should be" work process and organizational efforts for clients across all industrial sectors.

 


Carlos TapiaCarlos Tapia
Director, IPA Capital Solutions

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Carlos is a Director of IPA Capital Solutions. He also leads an IPA initiative focused on establishing deeper and stronger ties with senior corporate and business executives at IPA client companies.

Carlos has served as the Regional Director of IPA's Latin American operations based in Brazil. In this position, he was responsible for overseeing IPA’s increasing involvement in all business sectors in the Latin America region, with a particular focus on oil and gas exploration and production, refining and petrochemicals, and mining and minerals processing.

 


 

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