Refiners continue to face multiple challenges from increasingly tighter crack spreads, to expanding regulatory requirements and more frequent sourcing disruptions. Outside the refinery gates, balancing crude slates' availability with plant constraints and product demand is a critical success factor. Inside the refinery, the critical aspects of business excellence continue to be defined as optimizing production, ensuring asset integrity and process safety, delivering safe and effective turnarounds, improving maintenance efficiency and tool time productivity, and ensuring effective materials management. Confronted with a competitive labor market from retirement and losses to related industries, many refiners are recognizing the need to work on all of the fundamentals of sound operations, while building leadership skills throughout the ranks to create continuous improvement.
"The program provided a framework that enabled us to understand key issues and to confront them."