Update Dec 2004

Task Orientation and TMSA

To meet the quality system initiative (TMSA) recently introduced by OCIMF, many tanker owners will need to establish additional documentary processes to co-ordinate their management operations effectively.

The following areas are specific examples of issues that need to be addressed to meet TMSA requirements:
· Change management
· Risk management
· Accident/Incident analysis

This is in addition to non-conformance and defect management and closeout requirements, circulars, safety bulletins, procedural changes etc.

They in turn are related to remedial action scheduling, procedural change documentation, purchasing, handover documentation, training requirement documentation, scheduling of training etc.

In this discussion we illustrate the extra level of co-ordination that is required to make sure that defects, change management, risk management and incident investigation do not cause confusion and do not generate inconsistencies in reporting and awareness.

How does TMSA relate to a simple case of a defect:
Imagine that a port side manifold crane slewing motor is defective and requires technical attention, diagnosis, additional risk warnings, remedial action plans, defect resolution, spares, service scheduling, warnings to similar vessels and lessons learnt.

Using paper documents:
Paper documents containing material relevant to several different processes need to be copied and made available for those processes on board or ashore. This is time consuming and prone to gross inconsistency.

Electronic document management:
Electronic documents are filed in document related folders. These folders are available in all relevant locations such that users can locate the files and extract the information relevant to their current process. Here the chief engineer chief officer, superintendent quality manager and master would each need to locate each different document at each different stages of workflow in a separate folder. For example the defect report, the schedule for repair, the spares requisition, the operational change warning, the incident report etc will need to be located separately. So the master will need to remember what aspects of the voyage each outstanding defect my effect, in order to assess the risk to the new voyage, the chief engineer in order to organise repairs will need to open the defects folder, the maintenance scheduler, the spares inventory in separate processes. The chief officer will need to remember to warn the crew and the next chief officer in the change management warning and again in a handover note. Electronic documents are not automatically linked to processes. Therefore electronic documents do not appear before the user in relevant combinations and at the right stage of workflow to the role and the task at hand. Alerts are not the answer either unless they too are role and task related. Not all roles need to be warned of an issue at the same time. The chief engineer needs to remember to schedule a repair and order parts in amongst other priorities, the quality manager needs to remember to check the risk and change management activities, monitor closeout etc, the master needs to know that a defect affects risk factors within an imminent voyage or process.

Task Orientation:
Task orientation actually simulates all the processes and all the steps performed by each and every role in the company. Thereby there is no need to learn where each document may reside in a filing system so as to initiate a report. There is no need to open several non-process specific document files to carry out a process. There is no need to worry about whether people know that new reports exist. Relevant and timely information finds users at the time they are involved with their own part of the relevant process.

Easy initiation of reporting:
Using Task Orientation to begin the reporting and follow-up process of a defect that affects risk in many company activities:

With Task Orientation the chief engineer has a filing system covering a full breakdown of the machinery on the vessel. All diagnostic reports, defect reports, risk discussions, change management discussions etc, are covered under each machinery component they apply to, in this example the port side manifold crane. Any defect report the chief engineer fills will update the shore superintendents, the quality manager (if additional risk is involved), the next chief engineer, the chief officer (if he is the operator of this machine), etc. The defect will also appear alongside other repair priorities on the job scheduler so the chief engineer can prioritise in accordance with prevailing risks and resources. The job scheduler in turn will show parts available for the component and any history of problems and know how relevant to the port manifold crane.
Now this same manifold crane component category exits under the task of cargo operation for the chief officer. Therefore the operational aspects such as operational risk assessment, risk warnings, non conformance, remedial action plans and interim action plans including additional training for handling the slewing manually, are available to the chief officer to distribute. The chief officer will see all the chief engineers material and raise his own additional report material relevant to the risk management and change management that may be required.

Easy distribution of information related to a new risk:
Using the Task Assistant to notify others who need to take action to minimise risk that may rise consequent to a defect:

The quality manager is automatically notified that a new risk or non- conformance has arisen, he does not need to go and look in a document file to see a new entry. He is automatically notified of any serious defect while the chief engineer is reporting it. There is no requirement that the chief officer copies material already recorded by the chief engineer. The superintendent approving the spares quantities does not need to guess the reason and priority of the requirement.
The master need not guess what new defects, change warnings or special training requirements may affect the new voyage, he can see the new warnings, defect reports, progress reports etc for every outstanding defect and relevant to every operational task he needs to perform or supervise during the voyage. This included the machinery items that support the performance of each task.
The superintendent who visits the vessel will not miss the notification of an outstanding defect and will be able to physically confirm the validity of all related action taken.
The quality management team will be easily able to assess the quality of risk management at the end of each assessment period because all defects will be connected to the operation measures taken to mitigate risk. Above all it will be easy to ensure that the right people where promptly notified of additional risk.

Conclusion:
TMSA introducing several new layers of reporting and co-ordination requirements.
Documents in themselves to not connect to the task people are doing or to other reports and data that they are related to.
Task Orientation is a mechanism of relating overlapping information and allowing co-ordination by relating all data and content to the end use by each user, in other words the time when each user needs the information.
This ensures that documents and data actually help people perform the documentation task of TMSA while reducing, not increasing their own data management burden.