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concept select & definition (FEL 2)

io’s proven approach is founded on Decision Quality (DQ), agile practices and regular decision dialogue with our clients.

Success in Front End Loading (FEL) 2 is that the correct project is selected and that it is defined sufficiently to ensure the project is subsequently executed successfully. Failure to achieve either of these aims inevitably materialises in a failure to meet the desired business objectives. FEL2 is critical to successfully fulfilling a business opportunity.

At io we delineate FEL 2 into two discrete steps Concept Select and Concept Definition (PreFEED), aligned with the objective of ‘right project’ and ‘project right’ respectively. During Concept Select we apply decision quality as the framework against which we generate the technical definition necessary to evaluate the key project decisions against the selection criteria and ultimately decide on the development concept that best delivers the desired business objectives.

Of course, decision making is rarely straightforward. The underlying data, outcomes and the future business context are uncertain and once combined with the different perspectives of multiple stakeholders’ proceedings become complicated, requiring careful consideration. Our approach navigates this complexity by engaging in a decision dialogue with our client that builds consensus and commitment to action through regular and timely sharing of techno-economic study outcomes and the associated decision analysis.

At io we view the Concept Definition (PreFEED) step as an opportunity to optimise the project scope and setup the project for success in FEED (FEL 3) and beyond. The technical depth of the Concept Definition activities are shaped by the contracting strategy and we believe that working with our clients to understand their contracting requirements, their project management capability and the market trends is key to appreciating the trade-off between alternative contracting strategies. Collaboration with the client is necessary to select a preferred contracting approach that delivers a tolerable project cost and risk profile.

With the preferred contracting strategy in hand concept optimisation activities are executed to address high risk aspects and ‘bake in’ project value improvements whilst leaving room for further optimisation in FEL 3. These activities are executed by our experienced multi-discipline teams who embed our parent company execution expertise, further improving project readiness and safeguarding the transition to FEL 3 and FID.



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