Aurecon, sustaining capital solutions with a digital approach

Rapid change is driving the need for a new strategic approach to sustaining capital

Sustaining capital

Asset-intensive organisations are under increasing pressure to adapt and respond to volatile global markets, local economic, social and environmental demands, supply chain disruptions, sustainability and climate transition risk, and stakeholder pressures.

It’s time to strategically re-think business and asset planning to make smarter capital investment and delivery decisions to respond to these changes, securing licence to operate and delivering improved value to stakeholders, customers and shareholders.

Deciding where to direct available capital investment to optimise and transform value across a large and complex asset portfolio is a significant challenge that directly impacts business outcomes. It requires a thorough understanding of asset risk and evaluation of investment options, deeply informed by asset and engineering expertise and careful execution planning.

As the investment imperative moves away from building new assets towards optimising the value and performance of existing asset portfolios, sustaining capital investment will become a strategic lever of increasing importance for asset owners and operators.

Creating and protecting value, connecting assets to strategy

Ensuring that capital programmes and asset performance decisions are aligned to business strategy requires smart investment decisions that manage both risk and return, flexing to accommodate and adapt to future scenarios that anticipate asset closure, transition, and renewal.

This alignment between strategy and execution can only be achieved by thinking differently about the problems to be solved. Smart solutions must include thinking about:

Asset performance and transformation – do the right work

Selecting, prioritising and planning to optimise the work involved in creating value for the organisation

Asset performance - Aurecon

Capital delivery – do the work right

Developing and executing projects, often through programmes of work that deliver high quality solutions whilst controlling capital delivery costs and risk

Capital delivery - Aurecon

Connected insights – tapping the decision ecosystem

Business decisions enabled by an ecosystem that considers what value means to the organisation and a holistic approach to value that includes economic, licence to operate, organisational transformation, operational and safety considerations

Connected insights – Aurecon

Why partner with us on your sustaining capital programme?

Aurecon’s sustaining capital framework is underpinned by a decision ecosystem that, in partnership with our clients, helps bring diverse perspectives and insights to drive value-based business decisions.

Value encompasses a combination of factors that must be taken into consideration when designing and delivering sustaining capital investment, including:

  • Business strategy
  • Risk management
  • Operational efficiency and effectiveness
  • Sustainability and climate transition
  • Regulatory compliance
  • Licence to operate
  • Customer satisfaction

Aurecon works with clients across the entire value chain, advising, planning, designing, and delivering capital solutions that are guided by a deep understanding of assets and business operations.

Our templates, solutions and insights complement our clients’ existing approach to co-create a decision support system.

We bring unique elements that are required to plan and deliver effective sustaining capital investment:

A single strategic partner from value creation to value realisation

We understand the lifecycle of your business and asset base, including planning, market contexts and regulatory frameworks. Our approach is to co-create solutions with you and drive outcomes. We are experts in asset planning, delivery and performance - we understand the whole lifecycle of your asset base, and how to optimise investment for the greatest possible business value.

A flexible and adaptable approach to how we plan the portfolio

Sustaining capital programmes require flexibility to quickly respond to opportunities and retain the value of your assets. Planning processes must provide enough flexibility to quickly accommodate changes in external conditions and protect the value of your assets.

A deep understanding of your assets that allows us to optimise your sustaining capital investment

Assets do not operate in silos - they are interconnected both within broad systems and to the business outcomes they support. We build our understanding of the decision ecosystem of your organisation to inform asset management strategies that are aligned. Complex programmes and assets are often managed by different functions within an organisation, which can lead to missed opportunities and unintentional communication breakdowns. Our approach connects integrated planning, engineering, operations, and maintenance to support knowledge transfer and data-driven decision making.

Engineering in our DNA

We do not reside in a world of hypotheticals – we are asset engineers and advisors at heart - we know how to design and deliver solutions that are useable, useful, and used. Integrating our engineering mindset with our advisory and digital expertise gives us a unique data-driven decision making perspective that intersects the business and asset lifecycle. This positions us well to minimise the loss of value to your assets as your sustaining capital programme progresses from conception through delivery.

Transforming sustaining capital through a digitally enabled and data driven delivery platform

lightScope™ is the integrated digital platform that underpins Aurecon’s sustaining capital solutions. Co-developed with industry thought leaders, lightScope™ supports the full asset lifecycle, from early phase asset management and front-end studies, through to project execution and operational readiness.

Aurecon’s unique set of capabilities and technologies support asset reinvestment decisions, unlocking value at every stage of the investment cycle. We draw on data-driven insights to co-create and deliver sustaining capital investment programmes that improve value across the lifecycle of your business and asset base.

lightScope™ enables our clients to make the right investment decisions and optimise their sustaining capital programme, interrogating data and providing transparent insights into delivery performance. Our integrated tools streamline and automate work management processes, provide surety around the delivery of capital projects and enable closer collaboration with our clients and partners.

Our insights and advice are solving our clients’ problems

See our case studies below:

Protecting the value of ore refining assets for many more decades

This world leader in ore refining was facing a critical decision regarding the future of a profitable refinery as assets approached end-of-life. Aurecon used its asset performance expertise, together with digital asset data, to design a sophisticated sustaining capital programme to extend the facility’s assets and prioritise the timing of capital investments to free up significant investment cash flow.

How we did it

Our team developed a transformation roadmap and asset management plans, including lifecycle forecasts and end-of-life trigger points, for the site’s critical assets. We are also providing ongoing advice to evolve business processes and behaviours to drive the cultural and organisational transformation required to successfully execute the strategy.

What we delivered

  • A data-driven methodology to analyse and rationalise more than AUD 300 million in annualised capital investments, reprioritising ~AUD 100 million of work to create greater value and free up cashflow
  • A strong governance structure to make informed, realistic and confident capital investment decisions that align with corporate strategy
  • Effective prioritisation and implementation of the right projects, and systems, to support operational efficiency, health, safety and environmental compliance
  • Early-phase works that will reduce the carbon footprint of the facility

Long term planning and investment to secure future water supply

To secure the future water supply for a large region with population growth and increasing climatic extremes, while managing evolving policy and increasing project complexity, Aurecon is helping this water utility develop and execute a long-term plan for its operations. To deliver greater efficiencies, cost savings and productivity, this client needed to transform its project delivery operating models, sustain its ageing infrastructure assets and introduce new technologies.

How we’re doing it

We're building an integrated platform to optimise asset performance on a systems basis through a data-based framework at a strategic level to achieve better customer outcomes, cascading through to operational decisions and infrastructure planning actions.

What we’ve delivered so far

  • Digital models to prioritise and plan infrastructure investments
  • Increased water treatment capacity through asset strategy, planning and engineering
  • A continuous feedback loop that connects asset investments with operational outcomes and corporate strategy
  • Continuity of people on projects, and relationships between partners
  • Striking a balance with industry to deliver the best outcomes for the community, with a stronger focus on safety, performance, sustainability and innovation

Achieving asset regeneration with sustainability innovations and digital modelling

This global miner was optimising the performance and operational resilience of ageing assets at one of the world’s most efficient export centres. Aurecon was engaged to maximise the benefits of the necessary sustaining capital investment for this programme of work.

This drove the transformation of port marine structures to be adaptable to future technology, process and environmental changes, whilst remaining adaptable to support export supply and demand.

How we did it

Our team used digital analysis and modelling techniques to rapidly assess structural designs and identify safety improvements. We then developed a fully integrated, data-rich, digital model with asset information, enabling the miner to introduce maintenance and operational efficiencies over the next 50 years.

By integrating our understanding of engineering design, port operations and construction, we reduced the environmental and safety impacts of asset upgrades. Structures were reused to retain the existing offshore lease boundary, and prefabricated modular structures saved onsite construction materials wastage.

What we delivered

  • Operational resilience to withstand extreme weather events
  • Improved throughput capacity
  • Virtual reality visualisation to engage operator feedback on proposed safety improvements
  • Extended infrastructure to berth large vessels in a single move, rather than having to shift multiple times during loading
  • Connected prefabricated berthing structures to existing infrastructure, saving 20,000 onsite labour hours
  • Re-used existing infrastructure to avoid extensive demolition and additional dredging
  • Developed a digital twin with asset tag information for future maintenance and operational planning
  • Developed the client’s corporate digital Engineering Information Management framework

Balancing cost, risk and performance on a long-term asset programme

Aurecon is part of a consortia delivering a long-term asset performance programme to ensure the continued quality of road transport infrastructure in a major Australian city.

The zone includes most of the city’s bridges and traffic signal sites, and a large share of its road network. The programmed works will ensure that people, places and goods are connected and contribute to social and placemaking outcomes for local communities.

How we’re doing it

This joint venture enables maintenance to be delivered at-scale and completed with consistency across the city’s portfolio, putting road users at the heart of every decision. Aurecon’s asset management and advisory specialists are contributing as part of an integrated design, construction and operations team, categorising and prioritising the right work based on user needs.

What we’ve delivered so far

  • Continuous operations for the zone’s existing asset portfolio where it is critical to have an intimate understanding of the operating context of each asset
  • Digital modelling of every single road asset, from pavements to traffic lights, that will assist to prioritise and plan the maintenance and renewal of assets based on community usage and future needs
  • Determining and digitally categorising performance benefits for maintenance to plan work based on time, cost, risk, performance and sustainability factors
  • Continuous improvement in road worker safety, pedestrian safety, and customer safety, through network and contract efficiency
  • Mobilised a workforce of more than 200 people

Aurecon wins 2021 IPA Industry Choice Award for Sydney Water Planning Partnership.

Learn more

Let our advisory, engineering and digital expertise help you decide

We make the complex understandable. We understand the decisions to be made, and the data needed to make them. Our digital approach will transform your strategy, advancing information gathering and institutional knowledge by providing the right information to the right people, at the right time, to enable better decision making. This holistic view of assets frees you up to focus on doing more with your data.

It’s crucial to know where to invest – but it’s just as crucial to know where not to. We work with you to integrate specialist capability with a value-based approach to sustaining capital investment from asset planning to retirement.

We start at the only real starting point – by listening to what you need. We design solutions that are asset centric and driven by sustainable client value. Our strategic and delivery capability allows us to provide assurance and successfully execute sustaining capital programmes through best practice portfolio and project management.

There is no one-size-fits-all solution. But we believe solutions of any size are only effective when they combine a deep understanding of your business and your assets.

Our multidisciplinary advisory, engineering and digital specialists co-create programmes that empower you to make confident decisions that enable your organisation to respond to environmental, social, governance and economic pressures, and deliver a sustainable future for your business, for people and the planet.

Insights

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Projects

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