5 Biggest Production Optimization Mistakes

Every dredging company wants to have high productions from their vessels. But some serious mistakes are made when attempting to get the highest production. Today you can read about the 5 biggest mistakes.

Not optimize

Some companies don’t optimize at all. When you leave the achieved production to chance you can be certain it is not the highest it can be. When you accept the production that a dredger is doing on a project without analyzing it and without optimizing it you are leaving it to chance.

In many cases a few simple changes to the working method or dredging process can already boost your production.

If you are not willing to invest time and attention to the production, then you don’t really want to have higher productions. Don’t make this mistake. On every project, especially when they just started, optimize the production on board.

Not having a system

If you don’t have a system that gets you the highest production, then you don’t have the highest production.

The highest production can only be achieved every time if the optimizing is approach systematically, meaning you have a system in place that will always lead to the highest production.

An example would be the DICE system, which is a step-by-step easy to use system.

As soon as you apply a system to the optimization effort you will get better and consistent results. In addition every person in the organization will become familiar with the system, meaning it becomes easier to use over time as everybody speaks the same language.

Leaving it to the operators

The operators are responsible for the production, right? Well, their primary concern is the safety of the vessel and the people onboard. Then, if there is time left, they can work on the production.

In reality it results in lower productions than can be achieved. An outside optimization effort is therefore ideal, because that person can focus solely on the production and nothing else. Once that person has found the way to get the best production the operators can maintain that higher production.

Accepting the estimated production

When you accept the production that is estimated, especially when it was achieved easily, then you are not doing the maximum production possible.

An estimate is just that, an estimate, so by definition it is not 100% accurate. If you estimated a too low production and you subsequently accept this production in execution, then you are leaving thousands of dollars on the table.

Always optimize, even when the estimated productions are achieved easily.

Telling the crew what to do

When an outside person comes onboard to optimize the production it is tempting to tell the crew how they should dredge to achieve the higher production. The result is that the crew doesn’t understand why they should do it and subsequently, once the optimizer leaves, the production returns to the level it was before the optimizing.

Instead have the crew assist in the optimization and make sure they really understand why they need to do things differently. Once you have taught them the why they will maintain the higher production for a much longer time, if not indefinitely.


What was your experience when trying to achieve higher productions? What did you do that worked, what didn’t work? Let us know in the below comments section.

To your long term success,
Timon Vinke

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