Rockit turns to Worley to deliver project to tight deadline

Developing a best-in-class, post-harvest facility has many moving parts and a high level of complexity. It relies on the lead project manager making sure it’s up and running in time for the ripe apple to be picked and packed, which is an unmovable deadline.

Rockit Global Limited turned to Worley, a global leader in energy, chemicals and resources, which has a specialist engineering and project management team based in Hastings Street, Hastings.

“The local team has been delivering projects to heavy industrial infrastructure, FMCG and food and beverage clients mostly in Hawke’s Bay, central north island, Bay of Plenty, Marlborough and the East Coast,” says Roger Hawken, Hawke’s Bay Division Manager, Worley.

“A single point of overall project reporting to Rockit and other stakeholders was essential for Rockit management to get one coherent update of progress, cost, risk and schedule.”

Worley has been involved in this project since 2018, but was more recently engaged in a formal project management capacity in 2019. Ferdie Enslin, Senior Project Engineer, became involved in the project in early 2020 and took over as Project Manager several months later.

“One of the reasons the project was such a success was the fact we were able to work with Rockit from the early stages,” says Ferdie. “This helped define the scopes of work and the commercial mechanisms. It also allowed us to tailor the skills and expertise of each party that would be involved in the project delivery.

“We have found through working in the local market over the years what the particular strengths of each party are, we try not to put scope onto a contractor that is not in their sweet spot.”

Although Rockit grows apples, it is more like an FMCG business because the product – a Rockit™ apple – is sent from the facility in consumer packaging similar to a chocolate or muesli bar.

Worley’s project team involved several local project engineers and a cost controller, all of who required lots of face time with Rockit and the contractors.

Roger says COVID-19 brought some real challenges to the project.

“These were mitigated in part because we were able to revert to working from home quickly, and because the various contracting entities worked together as one team to progress the project.

“This was a really interesting project for us. We are proud to be part of this great success story for Rockit. Having a hand in the plant starting up on time and on budget was very satisfying.”

Worley delivering both globally but locally

Worley delivers project and asset services for the energy, chemicals and resources sectors in New Zealand and around the world. It also provides expertise in engineering, procurement and construction, as well as consulting services.

Worley has been operating in New Zealand for more than 40 years (previously as Transfield Worley and WorleyParsons) with customers in the infrastructure, food and beverage, industrial, minerals, metals, chemicals and hydrocarbons sectors.

Nationally, Worley has a team of more than 1,000, comprising 350 employees and 700 contractors operating from six offices throughout New Zealand.

In Hawke’s Bay, Worley has been developing, maintaining and building manufacturing and processing plants for over 20 years. These projects have included wineries, food processing, pet food, pulp, lumber, fertiliser and bottling plants, and wastewater treatment, biofuel and infrastructure facilities.

“We often get involved in projects at the concept stage when our customers have an idea but need help to develop the scope, cost estimate and schedule, and to identify and manage risks to progress the project to a viable business case,” says Roger.

“We focus on plant, equipment and machinery, from concept through to construction and commissioning, integrating specialised equipment into production processes. Our projects often involve buildings, however our core strength is in complex manufacturing and processing industries, and end-to-end project management.

“We are backed by the world-class expertise, systems and processes of Worley’s global business.”

When describing design and build, Roger says it’s a “unique offering where we take on full responsibility for a project before the detailed design has even been completed. This is often under a commercial environment where profit is shared based on our performance – be it cost, schedule, safety or plant performance.

“We often find our clients prefer this model over traditional lump sum or straight reimbursable,” he adds. “This is because the risks and rewards are shared between us and the customer. And a successful outcome for the customer means a good outcome for us.”