Integrating seven global sites enables world-class product development
Design work is performed at all seven sites, with each benefiting from the work done by the others
Comprehensive energy solutions – designed globally
FMC Technologies, Inc. is a global leader providing mission-critical technology solutions for the petroleum exploration, production and processing industries. The company designs, manufactures, tests and services systems, subsystems and products for energy clients, enabling them to produce, control, transport and process oil and gas. A truly global company, FMC Technologies operates in multiple regions, including the United States, Canada, Brazil, Africa, Scotland, Norway, France, the Netherlands, Germany, Italy, Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia. FMC partners with customers and suppliers to develop configurable systems using globally executable standard products.
Boosting engineering productivity
Management focus at FMC Technologies is aimed at providing customized solutions while minimizing the number of engineering hours devoted to each project. “Reducing engineering hours is a big focus of management,” says Steve Joiner, manager of Global Engineering Systems. “It’s critical for profitability and for speeding time-to-market.”
One key strategy for achieving this is the re-use of existing product information. This is the goal not only within each individual facility, but also enterprise-wide. “In the past, we had the capability of managing product information at each site, but we didn’t have very good visibility of the global picture of who was doing what,” says Joiner. “That is what we needed if we were really going to leverage product information across the enterprise.”
FMC Technologies chose Siemens PLM Software’s Teamcenter® software, a complete product lifecycle management (PLM) solution, to address its global product development needs. “The most important benefit of Teamcenter is that it allowed us to go global,” says Joiner. He notes that the company has gone well beyond computer-aided design (CAD) data management with Teamcenter integration for NX™ software and SolidWorks® software. He explains, “Other CAD data, material specifications, engineering specifications, design documentation, quality data, manufacturing data and tooling test fixtures are managed using Teamcenter across all seven design centers and their satellite facilities.”
Teamcenter is also used to manage product review and release workflows. When data from one of the sites is released, it then becomes available to other sites as part of the release cycle. “Without Teamcenter, we could export an entire database to another facility, but we would have no control over what we supplied to the other sites,” says Joiner. “Using Teamcenter, we can send out data on an item-by-item basis and share that information very concisely.” Teamcenter is used to manage workflows identically at all seven sites, advancing consistency across the enterprise.
PLM process improvements support growth, regulatory compliance
The scope of FMC Technologies’ solutions has expanded dramatically in recent years. In the past, the business supplied point solutions such as oil and gas wellheads. Now the solutions’ range is much broader, covering a great deal of the energy extraction and transport process. The enhanced engineering efficiency brought about by Teamcenter has supported this growth. “With the ability to re-use product data from the different design centers, we are executing more projects without a corresponding increase in personnel,” says Joiner.
Another area in which Teamcenter plays a critical role is regulatory compliance. In the oil and gas business, there are numerous regulatory agencies that dictate everything from product design to environmental issues at job sites. Teamcenter is helpful here because its use enables all engineering documentation to be managed according to regulations. For example, the system has been set up to limit access to information to authorized users only, a requirement of all regulatory agencies.
The use of Teamcenter also provides confidence that parts are built to the correct specifications during manufacturing. “When we design a part in our system, we determine to what specification we must certify that part,” says Joiner. “When we make the part, it is constructed according to the requirements that engineers placed against those parts. Manufacturing personnel can easily determine the version of a specification to which the part will be audited.”