Nine tips to reduce your unit rate

Unit rate is the key performance indicator for any dredging contractor. Unit rate, $/m3, is the currency for any dredger. Reducing the unit rate is essential for increasing your company’s net profit and staying ahead of your competition.

  1. Select the right equipment for the job by estimating the work with various sizes and types of equipment and compare unit rates. Unit rate is a good single evaluation parameter.
  2. Compare your estimated unit rate with historical production levels and cost evaluations. Archive realised unit rates after each project in easy to access overviews. Highlight any (potential) constraints/opportunities that impacted the unit rate.
  3. Prepare the project by thinking through all the steps involved to execute the project. Dredging behind the desk is cheap compared to trial and error in the field.
  4. Measure your performance in sufficient detail so that you can identify any production limiting factors. There is invariably at least one production limiting factor and it should always be identified/known by the team.
  5. Benchmark your performance with the estimate daily. Create an easy to read dashboard to inform your team in the blink of an eye.
  6. Identify opportunities that could improve production levels regularly. Listen to your operators as they typically generate the best ideas for improvement.
  7. Perform cost-benefit analyses on technically feasible improvements. Costs are only one side of the equation. Benefits are often only achieved after investment as it takes money to make money.
  8. Make sure your production levels are steady state. Peaks are followed by troughs (or downtime!) which lowers the average production level.
  9. Maintain sufficient spare parts. You don’t need a spare dredger, but you want a system in place to minimise downtime due to technical failure.

i2D’s advanced dredging engineering solutions could significantly reduce your unit rate.

dredging engineers optimising jet configuration of TSHD
dredging engineers optimising jet configuration of TSHD

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