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Prof. W.S. William
Managed Service PM in Reliance Communications
Submitted By: Auronil Dutta Roll No. 8, PGDM (3 Year) (2009-2011) XAVIER INSTITUTE OF MANAGEMENT, BHUBANESWAR
PROJECT MANAGEMENT OF A RELIANCE COMMUNICATIONS TELECOM PROJECT
India is a vibrant market from communications point of view. The subscriber base in the wireless market in India, the world’s fastest growing telecom market reached another milestone when it surpassed 200 million subscribers in Aug 2007. The country’s mobile services market is forecast to grow by a compound annual rate of 28.3% in next five years. At present there are around 54000 cell sites operated by different GSM/CDMA operators. This number would further go up to 80.000 in next couple of years. To reach the target the approximate capital expenditure required in telecom infrastructure alone is expected to be approximately $20 billion in next three years. GSM/CDMA project is spread over large areas with work sites located wide apart, are situated in wilderness with minimal approaches or on roof tops in thick of urban areas with restricted working space. Thus project management in general and construction management in particular plays a major role in cost effective and efficient execution of telecommunication projects. It is needless to mention that the objective is to ensure that the project does not suffer in terms of quality, time and cost overruns. For ease of comprehension, study on the development of passive infrastructure has been designed to first present the theoretical concepts and then correlating them to actual applications in the field by applying them into examples. Topics include scope of work, project planning, contractual terms of conditions, monitoring and controlling of project, quality control, risk management, warehouse management, operation and maintenance. Reliance Communications Limited (“Reliance Communications” or “the Company”) is India’s largest integrated communications service provider in the private sector with over 85 million individual, enterprise, and carrier customers. It operates pan-India across the full spectrum of wireless, wire line, and long distance, voice, data, video and internet communication services. It also has an extensive international presence through the provision of long distance voice, data and internet services and submarine cable network infrastructure globally.
Strategic Business Units
The business of Reliance Communications is organized into three strategic customer facing business units: Wireless, Global, and Broadband. In addition, subsidiaries of Reliance Communications are engaged, inter alia, in the ownership, operation and development of telecom infrastructure, such as wireless communications sites and towers. The strategic business units are supported by fully integrated, state-of-theart network and operations platform and by the largest retail distribution and customer service facilities of any communications service provider in India.
It offers CDMA and GSM based wireless services on a nationwide basis, including mobile and fixed wireless voice, data, and value added services for individual consumers and enterprises. Following the recent roll-out of our GSM network, it has now become the only player in the country offering both GSM and CDMA (dual technology) services on a nationwide basis. It not only provides telecom connectivity to the mass market consumer segment but also, as an Integrated Telecom Service Provider, it offers total telecom solutions to corporate, SME & SoHo customers. The portfolio of products includes mobile handsets, fixed wireless phones/terminals, high-speed internet data cards and Blackberry services. The primary brands are Reliance Mobile for the mobile portfolio of services, Reliance Hello for the fixed wireless portfolio of services and Reliance Net connect for wireless data services. It also offers a unique wireless multi media experience under the brand Reliance Mobile World. It also offers public calling office (“PCO”) services over the wireless network through independent retail operators of such facilities. It has pioneered rural telephony initiatives that are supported by the Government of India’s Universal Services Obligation (USO) Fund. Additionally, it provides connectivity for devices such as point of sale terminals, lottery terminals, and ATM terminals. It is among the top two providers of wireless communication services in the country, with a wireless subscriber base of over 80.6 million as of November 30, 2009 representing a market share of 18.9%. It is also the second largest seller of mobile handsets/devices in the country, and the largest service provider engaged in this activity. Due to its unique strength in high speed wireless data transmission, it has nearly 60% market share of the data card and USB modem market for laptops and PCs. In addition, it has the largest PCO operator in the private sector with over 50% market share.
Reliance Mobile has been rated as "India's Most Trusted Service Brand" amongst all service brand categories in the most reputed pan-India consumer survey conducted by "The Economic Times".
Managed Service: Reliance
Communications, and Alcatel-Lucent (Euronext Paris and NYSE: ALU) have announced forming a global joint venture called Managed Service. Combining the unique strengths of Alcatel-Lucent and Reliance Communications, the Joint Venture Company forays in the fast growing $ 16 Bn (Rs. 64,000 Crore) Managed Network Services Industry and will cater to telecom operators, both CDMA and GSM, across India. The first assignment of this joint venture is to provide Managed services for Reliance Communications nationwide CDMA & GSM networks in India. World over, the biggest challenge Telecom operators are facing is to continuously improve competitiveness by reducing operating expenditure and enhancing network quality to provide superior customer experience. The combined expertise and experience of Reliance and Alcatel-Lucent creates an unmatched blend of leadership in technology, innovation, scale of operations and customer service to become Worlds leading Managed Network Services Provider. With the unique combination of network management and operations expertise, consulting and IT experience, as well as technology, the Joint Venture facilitates a proactive, quick-to-respond environment to fast-paced and dynamic market conditions to leading telecom service providers including Reliance Communications. The joint venture supports the expansion and growth of Reliance Communications, within and outside India, bringing predictability of the operations and related expenses, while maintaining the highest standards of customer experience. A new legal entity is being formed as part of the joint venture. Alcatel-Lucent will have the operational control of the new entity. Reliance Communications is represented in the Joint Venture through its wholly own subsidiary. The joint venture would thereafter expand its operations in the global arena. This joint venture will create a unique cornerstone and cost-effective bridge for managed services globally. A mobile telephony Cell Site A cell site is a term used primarily for a site where antennas and electronic communications equipment are placed to create a cell in a mobile phone network (cellular network). A cell site is composed of a tower or other elevated structure regular and backup electrical power sources, and sheltering. A synonym for "cell site" is "cell tower. However, In GSM networks, the technically correct term is Base Transceiver Station (BTS), and colloquial British English as "base station". The term "base station site" might better reflect the increasing co-location of multiple mobile operators, and therefore multiple base stations, at a single site. Depending on an operator's technology, even a site hosting just a single mobile
operator may house multiple base stations, each to serve a different air interface technology (CDMA or GSM, for example). Typical layout of a ground based site is attached shown below
The working range of a cell site - the range within which mobile devices can connect to it reliably is not a fixed figure. It will depend on a number of factors, including
• • •
The type of signal in use (i.e. the underlying technology), similar to the fact that AM radio waves reach further than FM radio waves. The transmitter's rated power. The transmitter's size.
The array setup of panels may cause the transmitter to be directional or Omni-directional. It may also be limited by local geographical or regulatory factors and weather conditions.
TOWER SITE SELECTION
Cellular tower locations are the result of an engineering field called Radio Frequency Engineering or RF, for short. RF engineers work closely with the marketing departments to determine areas where the placement of a new tower will accomplish one (or more) of three goals: Expansion: The tower site provides coverage over areas that do not currently have coverage. Capacity: The tower site provides additional capacity for the carrier to handle more calls in areas where existing towers are overloaded. Quality: The tower fills in a hole or an area where customer calls are frequently dropped or call service is poor. In either case, the tower must serve a specific purpose. The majority of the times, that purpose are to increase the number of minutes that people talk or receive/send data on their phones. The industry refers to this as “Minutes of Use” or MOUs. The main way of increasing MOUs is by placing cell towers or sites in locations that have high daytime working populations. Most carriers have wireless plans that provide cheap or free "off time" rates, so the emphasis is daytime calling minutes which are typically the most expensive. Need less to mention that daytime rates are highest in areas where people either travel a lot or where they work. Urban and suburban areas have the highest concentration of cellular sites and towers. To provide coverage for those people traveling between these particular urban/suburban areas, highways, state roads, and higher traffic local roads are covered by towers as well. Placement of towers at strategic intersections of major roads is often preferred. Lately, carriers have been adding cell sites in rural areas as well in an attempt to provide ubiquitous coverage (an unobtainable goal for at least 5 years). Sites are located near a major roadway. Rarely do wireless carriers build towers in the middle of nowhere. Cellular sites must meet one or more of the three goals listed above. Building a tower to cover rural farmland where no people live does not serve any of these goals. The marketing departments of the wireless carriers are constantly reviewing potential and uncovered areas to determine where to place new towers. Because
carriers have capital budgets, the marketing departments and RF engineering departments work together to prioritize those sites that they believe will provide the most benefit to the company in terms of MOUs or quality of service.
Location of Cell Site Site should be large enough for a cell tower—normally (but not always) this is a parcel double the size of the height of the tower. So if a tower is 100 ft tall, the parcel must be 200' x 200'. Site must have easy and cheap access from a public road. Site must be suitable from a zoning perspective. In many jurisdictions, towers are only allowed on commercially or industrially zoned parcels. Some areas allow towers on agriculturally zoned sites, and most do NOT allow towers on residentially/ forest land or restricted areas Sites must not have conditions that would make constructing a tower unduly expensive. These conditions can include wetlands, poor or rocky soil conditions, significant distance to the cell tower site from the main road, lots of trees, possible hazardous waste on the property and high voltage power lines. Landowners must be willing to lease the site at rates acceptable to the wireless carrier One thing to note is that, contrary to public belief, the ground elevation is not the most important factor. Just because you live on the tallest or second tallest hill in the area or county does not mean that your location is preferred from a wireless perspective, unless the location is in a "Search Ring."
Generally, in areas where there are enough cell sites to cover a wide area, the range of each one will be set to:
Ensure there is enough overlap for "handover" to/from other sites (moving the signal for a mobile device from one cell site to another, for those technologies that can handle it - e.g. making a GSM phone call while in a car or train). Ensure that the overlap area is not too large, to minimize interference problems with other sites.
In practice, cell sites are grouped in areas of high population density, with the most potential users. Cell phone traffic through a single cell mast is limited by the
mast's capacity; there are a finite number of calls that a mast can handle at once. This limitation is another factor affecting the spacing of cell mast sites. In suburban areas, mast are commonly spaced 1.5-3 kms apart and in dense urban areas, masts may be as close as 0.5-1 kms apart. Cell masts always reserve part of their available bandwidth for emergency calls. The maximum range of a mast (where it is not limited by interference with other masts nearby) depends on the same circumstances. Some technologies, such as GSM, have a fixed maximum range of 40km (25 miles), which is imposed by technical limitation As a rough guide, based on a tall mast and flat terrain, it is possible to get between 50 to 70 km (30-45 miles). When the terrain is hilly, the maximum distance can vary from as little as 5 kms to 8 kilometers .The concept of "maximum" range is misleading, however, in a cellular network. Cellular networks are designed to create a mass communication solution from a limited amount of channels (slices of radio frequency spectrum necessary to make one conversation) that are licensed to an operator of a cellular service. To overcome this limitation, it is necessary to repeat and reuse the same channels. Just as a station on a car radio changes to a completely different local station when you travel to another city, the same radio channel gets reused on a cell mast only a few miles away. To do this, the signal of a cell mast is intentionally kept at low power and many cases tilting downward to limit its area. The area sometimes needs to be limited when a large number of people live, drive or work near a particular mast; the range of this mast has to limited so that it covers an area small enough not to have to support more conversations than the available channels can carry. It is also important to note that these Search Rings are proprietary and are not available to the public or even to industry experts. They are not registered or provided to the local, state, or federal governments. Wireless carriers prefer to locate on existing structures first before building a new tower. They do this because many zoning jurisdictions require this due diligence and because it reduces development costs and time to market. If there are suitable structures, the carrier will then just lease space on the tower, and no new tower will be built. A full scale ground based cell site of 60 m length costs around Rs 30-35 lakh, while roof-top cell sites comes in different denominations ranging from 24 m to 9 m. A 15 m roof-to cite would cost around Rs 7 lacs. Further Service providers want to create new revenue streams and simplify existing infrastructure, create a world-class ready-made infrastructure to provide highest level of standards to their agents to deal with customers and reduce costs. As they have an aggressive roll out plan, the need of the day is to out source development of infrastructure so that the service providers are able to focus primarily on revenue generation. To fulfill this requirement business of passive infrastructure provisioning and management is being outsourced to companies who operate and provide passive infrastructure comprising towers, shelter with ACs, diesel generating sets, battery back-up etc, and related site structures in ground based
as well as roof top sites for co-locating active elements owned by different operators. It also provides the operations and maintenance services, housekeeping and security functions allowing the client to focus on their core business. However, normally they do not share of electronic elements such as the radio access network or antennae. At present, the ratio between the infrastructure components and electronic elements is 70:30. Site Sharing The idea is to maximize revenues from the BPO facility by accommodating various clients at the same facility so that maximum seats can be utilized at the same time. The sharing of facility also allows accommodating clients involved in low-end as well as high-end services. It enables earning of higher margins from different clients based on their end activity and the criticality of the infrastructure support required.
Project management can well be described as the application of knowledge, skills, tools and techniques to project activities in order to meet or exceed customers/clients needs and expectations from the project. Meeting the need of the client invariably involves balancing competing demands among: • • Scope, time & cost Identified requirements (expectations)
Specific to telecommunication projects, project management consists of management all the activities of a given project right from Site Survey to Site Integration. This helps an Operator / Client in having optimum man-power and relaying on the Project Management in executing the project successfully in time. Almost all sites are unique with regard to building process, vagaries of weather, unforeseen risks, remote area problems, and lack of communications. It entails basic function of planning, scheduling, monitoring and control. The planning function involves listing of all tasks essential in the completion of the project. Scheduling consists of sequencing of tasks according to their precedent time and expected times. Monitoring and control is the review and correction of difference between the schedule and actual work performance of the activity.
Monitoring and control involves four steps Measuring: Tells us the status or the progress of work package during the construction. Reviewing: Measuring or progress leads the construction management to plan again and reschedule to make more efficient action plan Reporting: The progress report and revised action plan is reported to senior management for their approval and study. A proper scientific method is adopted in reporting, which is popularly known as management information system (MIS). The success or failure of project largely depends upon the extents of efficiency of MIS. This is the controlling lever of construction management. Action; Action is taken as per revised plan by the project office. It controls four Ms i.e. Money, Manpower, Machinery and Material. Also time and quality. Controlling Tools • • • • • Network analysis techniques monitors time Resource schedule charts gives information about logistics and machinery Organization chart tells about requirement of manpower Specifications and drawings bounds the management to quality Financial planning about funding.
Scope of Work:
Scope of Work consists of following activities: • • • • • •
• • • • •
RF and site survey Site Lay-out & Marking Obtaining no objection certificate for setting up cell site Liaison with State Electricity Boards for obtaining required power Contracting and identifications of risks Soil Testing ,structural design and layout of ground based sites Structural analysis of existing buildings and layout of roof top sites Finalization of specifications for equipment, works in consultation with technical and commercial teams Preparation of bill of quantities and bill of services. Preparation of schedules in co-ordination with all suppliers. Plan & scheduling of equipment and inform to warehouse & logistics department
• • • • • • • • • •
Monitoring all the activities on daily basis and reporting through a MIS (including critical area and critical activity analysis). Warehouse management Provision of Security at Site. Supervision of Civil, Electrical, Tower and other equipment installations Quality inspections and punch points Site RFI Co-ordination with all suppliers and Subcontractors for liquidation of punch points Documentation Final inspection & Handing over of site Bills verification and certification
Organization Structure The Project Management Team is organized to cater for various activities covered in the scope of Project Management of Cell Sites as per the Customer requirements. The PMC general Organization Structure is as follows:
RF & Site Survey
Cellular tower locations are the result of an engineering field called Radio Frequency Engineering or RF, for short. RF engineers at the various wireless companies such as work closely with their marketing departments to determine areas where the placement of a new tower will accomplish one (or more) of three goals:
1. Expansion: The tower site provides coverage over areas that do not currently have coverage. 2. Capacity: The tower site provides additional capacity for the carrier to handle more calls in areas where existing towers are overloaded. 3. Quality: The tower fills in a hole or an area where customer calls are frequently dropped or call service is poor.
RF design consists of the following: • Site survey of search areas, selection of suitable site and evaluation. • Detailed RF site design including site configuration • Site parameter settings • Frequency planning • Continuing post- launch optimization to ensure optimum level performance level The benefits of RF Optimization service are increased revenues and reduced costs.
Network quality resulting in higher speech quality index.
• Satisfied customers resulting in low churn Efficient network utilization resulting in reduced investment costs.
RF Optimization services include the following: Study of network performances through OMC Statistics, drive tests and customer feedback. • Post-processing and analysis of the performance data to bench mark the network performance against the set quality of service targets and identify eventual problems. • Proposing an action plan for solving the problems. The proposed action plan may include parameter changes and/or network configuration changes and/or network Hardware elements changes. • In close coordination with the customer, implementing the proposed action plan. Performance Verification to ensure that the optimization process has resulted in network performance improvements such that it meets the set quality of service targets.
Site Build up Process
The comprehensive site acquisition and installation process helps to deliver high quality and cost effective services to the customers. Based on rollout plan and requirements of respective companies, potential sites are located. Site acquisition teams narrow down the best feasible locations through RF planning tools, field survey, real estate agents, references, and existing cell site owners. Thereafter, internal technical department comprising planning, civil & acquisition team to assess the suitability in terms of radio coverage, soil & structural suitability and optimal site shares opportunities with other potential service providers. Based on the clearance report from internal technical department, a suitability survey is again carried out by RF Transmission & Electrical teams to assess the suitability from the point of view of Line of Sight & Electrical Requirement, including back up power through DG sets. After the site is technically selected, commercial negotiation are initiated with the property owner. Commercial negotiation includes cost/ rent, advance, security deposit etc. It will also include due diligence of property documents, period of lease/ rent, escalation conditions and 24 hrs accesses to the site to carry out routine and emergency maintenance. Other risks like institutional land, defense area, land for religious purpose, land use rights etc will also be considered during the due diligence and a risk mitigation strategy will be appropriately developed. Once commercial terms and conditions are finalized with the site owner and internal approval is obtained, NOC is required to be collected from site owner to ensure that the he does not pose any resistance while integrating the cell sites. In addition to other terms NOC contains the following essential clauses • Owner is the legal heir of the property and the same has not been mortgaged or is under dispute • Agrees to give out on lease/rent as per mutually agreed terms and conditions • Will not sell the property during the duration of the agreement • The company is permitted to undertake and execute all activities required for development of cell site. After receiving NOC from the site owner, all necessary clearance/ documentation are obtained from legal/ government authorities. Once all documents are in place, the site is handed over to the site development team to construct tower and all accessories including shelter, DG, HVAC etc. Certain changes are generally found necessary, varying from the quality and nature of work from those agreed by the parties. The need is therefore, to resolve
these variations before they manifest into disputes. Effective resolutions of variations arising out of variations during the execution of project has been an area of concern as significant number of projects suffer in terms of time, cost and quality performance due to obstruction in project objectives on account of conflicting individual interests.
Identification of Risks
Risk management is a systematic process in which risk factors are identified, evaluated and planned. It is formal approach to set out numerous varied uncertainties in order to identify critical issues and provide measures for tackling difficulties that occur. It includes identification and assessment of risks together with development of strategies to minimize them when they occur, mitigate adverse effect or take advantage of beneficial ones. Risk is an unforeseen event, which is abstract in nature and is difficult to measure with precision or accuracy. It results in loss in terms of time, money, materials, manpower, machinery and other associated activities. Risk will apply to price, weather, inflation, strikes, labor problem and other aspects of project. Risk can therefore be defined as” exposure to the possibility of economic and financial loss or gain, physical damage or injury or delays as a consequence of uncertainty associated with perusing particular course of action. Undertaking GSM/CDMA project is fraught with risks and obstacles owning to the very nature and terrain of the project. This results in additional cost of remobilization, reworks, additions and alterations.
Documentation: The need to specify the type of documents, the format, and
acceptance and certification procedures needs no emphasis. It directly affects the payment terms and thus the cash flow. GSM/CDMA projects demand considerable outlay of funds and therefore it is imperative that the revenue generation is expeditious and procedure for releasing the payment is documented before commencement of the project.
Non-Availability of Sites: Non-availability of sites, cancellation, sites on hold
and disputed sites has adverse affect on the roll out plan. Many a timework has stopped after the major portion has been completed. Remobilization of teams and machinery is not only time consuming but also results in avoidable expenditure.
Change in Specifications: Due to the very nature of the project changes in
specifications occur. The need is to investigate the project in dept at pre tender stage in order to avoid changes as repeated changes result in dismantling of existing facilities and executing the new works causing delay and additional cost both direct and indirect.
Tenancy: During the preliminary survey certain sites are selected based on the
anticipated traffic and location. However during the course of construction priorities or/and the requirement of the service providers change resulting rescheduling the project or delay in renting out the cell site, especially in pro active sites.
Integration of supply of material: Diverse kinds of material and equipment
are supplied by respective agencies and their delivery is coordinated with the progress at respective sites. Any delay in supply of material not only delays the project but also results in idle labor and increase in both direct and indirect costs. To avoid this it is important that prequalification of vendors are done after in depth verification of their capabilities and financial worthiness. The contractor should have reserve funds to tide over the financial crunch so as to manage working capital cash flow.
To under take field and laboratory investigations to assess the nature of sub-soil, strata and to evaluate the bearing capacity and other parameters suitable for construction of foundations at cell sites
Design should be simple, flexible executable on ground, standardized as far as possible and should cater for site and location specific constraints and requirements. The commitments and decisions during design phase have a very high level of influence on the project cost as any alterations results in avoidable reworks and disruption of work. Some of the features which are recommended to be considered within the frame work of site constraints are given below: • Standardized the dimensions of beam and columns thereby reducing the number of set of forms and ease of construction • Reduce number of bars in a given concrete placement to avoid dense congestion of reinforcement by either using larger bar sizes or increasing the cross sectional area at critical sections.
• • • • •
• • • •
Reduce the number of various sizes of rebar. This will reduce the chances of errors in erection of reinforcement. It should be practical, executable at site with realistic tolerance. Avoid wordy and redundant specifications, seeking liability avoidance through inclusion of excessive requirement and unnecessary standards. Specify specific clause in the code rather than entire code. It will reduce cost, availability time and expedite inspection of material. Avoidance of duplication of specifications and drawings so as to ensure that there is no conflict between specifications and notes on drawings. the specifications and drawings are to guide the physical construction of projects and therefore there should be no inconsistencies between drawings and specifications Specify approved material and components. Specify clearly the desired standards of quality and performance required at site Provide quick response to requests for clarification or changes in design details. Testing of materials for quality level
Structural Analysis of Existing Building
It is of utmost importance that the structural analysis of the existing structure is assessed prior to its consideration for installation of tower and allied equipment • Framed structure should be preferred over structure on walls • In multistory building the suitability should be assessed after analyzing the structural suitability of each floor. • As far as possible avoid structure with RBC roof slab as exposing the reinforcement of the slab will affect the strength of the slab • Separate approach to the cell site should be or made available • The existing reinforcement of columns, beams and/or slabs should be exposed to check their respective sizes. • The design and layout should cater for the restricted availability of space so as to avoid dense reinforcement and for ease of laying of form work.
The progress of cell site at optimal cost requires judicious allocation of available resources including material and equipment. The quality and progress of constructional activities depend upon providing matching resource at every stage of activity. Procurement of material and equipment in GSM/CDMA project spans
across 85-90% of the overall cost and duration. Late delivery of material and equipment merge as the most important factor contributing to the delays in project implementation. The scenario in India is further complicated by the fact that most vendors over trade themselves and book orders much beyond their capability and capacity.
Bill of Material:
Based on technical requirement, past experience, documented site wise requirement, availability and cost of material bill of material is prepared which lays down the quantity of each item. This gives a very fair idea of the scope of work to the vendor and also to the client in monitoring and controlling the cost.
Scheduling of delivery of material and equipment: Delivery schedule of
material and equipment is prepared based on the roll out plan, site wise requirement of equipment and material, planned progress at site, capabilities of vendors and to cater for reserves against unforeseen contingency. The warehouse and logistic department is informed accordingly for procurement and storage.
Network analysis is a generic term used to signify techniques that use networks and basic critical path concepts for planning and scheduling and are graphical numeric in nature. This depends basically upon graphical portrayal of work plan in the form of network and then their numerical analysis to yield information. It requires complete break down of the tasks into its component jobs and preparation of network showing the sequence as well as the inter-relation ship between the various operations. However, developing separate networks for each cell site is time consuming, consisting of voluminous paperwork and difficult to decipher quickly and objectively. Keeping this in view project planning schedule customized to the specific requirement of GSM/CDMA projects was designed and developed. This schedule lays down the planned duration of each activity and the delivery of the material was integrated with the planned progress
Daily Progress Reports (DPR): DPR is customized by individual clients
based on essential information required, terrain and activities. Generally it consists of name/ID of site, planned and actual completion of site layout, excavations, reinforcement, concreting, bolt casting, tower delivery and erection, shelter delivery and installation DG installation & commissioning, AC
commissioning, Electrical works, EB connection, boundary wall and security room. The systems are most effective as at a glance the management is able to assess the progress of each activity at respective sites, identify the problems, if any, and take immediate corrective measures.
Tracking Sheet for Civil Works: Civil works is the critical activity in the
completion of cell site as erection of tower; shelter and DG depend on its timely completion. Further the quality of civil work play a major role in the stability of the structures. With this in view the tracking of civil work is of paramount importance and accordingly tracking sheet was designed and developed which lays down the planned and actual duration of completion of each activity. The progress is monitored, delivery of the material re-scheduled if required.
Documentation helps in standardization of work methods to attain consistency in operations. It serves as reference to management, site staff and contractors to create commonality of views and communication between them. It helps in providing feed back for improvement in practices, techniques, methods and specification for future projects. Accurate, complete and detailed records can be invaluable in time of accidents or structure failures. The major types of records to be maintained are:
• Site Folders:
o Drawings of the location & key plan, structural and as built drawings, electrical, ear thing grid and equipment layout in shelter. o Vendor details o Commissioning reports of AC and DG o Warranty certificates o Electrical configuration o Check lists, pour certificates o Acceptance testing report o Cube test results o Punch points Register
Security guard attendance registers. Verified by respective site
Diesel Consumption Register: Giving hour and energy meter
readings, quantity of diesel in tank and filled. Verification by security
Material register: Details of receipt and dispatch of material to other
Visitors register: Incorporates details of visits by site engineers,
quality teams and others
QUALITY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
In recent years industry has increasingly aware of rising construction cost and perception of increased quality problems and the way to increase profit is to reduce the cost of poor quality rather than to increase sales. The need for structured and formal systems of construction management to address the aspects of performance, workmanship and quality has arisen as a direct result of deficiencies and problems in design, construction, materials, and maintenance operations. These deficiencies cost the industry a huge amount of money and many might be alleviated through training, greater care and attention to standards of performance and quality at design and construction stages. Explicit as possible, identification and meeting/exceeding the customer requirements is fundamental basing point of effective quality control. Customer satisfaction is of prime importance and it should be a continuous process rather than one time endeavor. It is ever changing. What is considered quality today may not be good enough to be considered quality tomorrow. • • • • • • Achieve the highest standard and expertise through continuously, developing and improving the quality plans and standards. Meeting commitments Monitoring the quality plan in respect of performance vis-à-vis laid down quality parameters, cost, time or any other activity. Human resource development Stringent quality standards for pre-qualification of vendors. Documenting punch points and corrective measures undertaken.
Quality Plans and Standards
Specific to GSM/CDMA projects the plan should include the standard for each activity. Instead of quoting the IS code the relevant features of the code should be included and the focus should be on practicality and nature of construction.
For example incase of civil works instead of quoting IS 456, add the clauses and standards on water cement ratio, form work, cover, concreting, reinforcement amongst others. Few of the salient requirements in respect of major equipment are as under:
• • • • • Galvanizing of fabricated steel as per IS 2595 with a minimum thickness of 85 microns Welding by electrodes conforming to AWS:E6013 All members provided with marking for ease of construction Bolts and nuts as per IS 1363 and washers IS 5369 Incase of new customer prototype of tower be got approved before dispatch to site
• • • • • Verticality of the tower to be ensured and tightening of bolts after proper alignment and verticality of tower is ensured Check nuts must be provided as in addition to assistance in achieving verticality of tower it also provides additional support to the bolts. Painting of tower with one coat of primer and two coats of approved enamel paint Erector to comply with safe erection practices and guard against hazardous and unsafe working conditions. Provision of sitcom below base plate
• • • • • • • • • • Fuel tank with level indicator, filler cap with lock, feed connection to engine amongst other accessories. AVM pads of poly pond make Locking arrangements for canopy Residential silence Alarm systems Neutral for ear thing
No breakages in walls, roofs, doors of the shelter No depression in floors Proper anti static flooring Locking arrangements for door
• • • • • • Earth pits as per drawings Earth value not exceeding Provision of insulators, especially below bus bars Proper crimping of joints and provision of clamps Proper routing of cables Use of approved makes and brands
• • • • • • • • • Layout as per drawing and jointly verified by client, vendor and owner Approved makes of cement, steel and bricks to be used. Check date of manufacture and quality cement before use Bending and laying of steel as per drawing and bar bending schedule Provision of cover blocks. No bricks/ wooden pieces will be used Water cement ratio to be maintained Center to center distances and level of columns to be ensured. Compaction of earth work ensured Cube tests for compressive strength to be undertaken and documented.
Meeting of Commitments
In order to gain the confidence of clients it is of paramount importance that commitments are met within the mutually acceptable time frame. Failure to meet commitments is due to unrealistic assessment of time, cost and orders in hand. Commitment should be made after analyzing the following: • Financial resource including capability to raise funds through banks or/ and financial institutions • Availability of experienced and qualified human resource • Order book • Availability of teams • Availability of sub- contractors
Monitoring of Quality
Laying down detailed plans and preparation of check lists are of no value incase these are not implemented on ground. The quality needs to be checked during the design phase and thereafter during and after construction at site. In addition to quality checks it is important that the site staff is trained at site on the quality measures to be adopted and on immediate corrective actions.
Human Resource Development
Human resource development is one of the most essential ingredients of developing customer’s confidence and meeting commitments made to the customer. Training plays an important role in developing the knowledge, methods, techniques and awareness of human resource. Training method as a change replaces the old view with new tangible, practical and concrete behaviors and techniques. The curriculum should be need based and correlated to the engineering operations in the field. Paramount features of technique are: • Consist of project specific requirement • Project management techniques and methods • Tools and techniques to improve quality and project delivery performance • Identification of risks and remedial measures to overcome them • Changes and trends in customer requirements, business management systems and practices • Continual improvements in preventive and corrective actions. • Realistic and specific case studies which in addition highlight lessons learnt.
Pre qualification of Vendors
Vendor pre-qualification analysis is defined as a process used to determine his competence to meet specific requirement for performance of specific task. Selection of appropriate vendor is very important in achieving quality performance failing which multiple problems will be encountered in the project.
Expertise: The selection of vendor for particular work will depend upon his
expertise in a particular sector of operation and business segments. For example electrical contractor with knowledge of electrification of buildings will not be effective in executing electrical works at cell sites.
Financial Stability: Depending upon the liquidity situation in the economy,
payment to vendors may become erratic. The vendor should have reserve funds to tide over the financial stringency.
Liquidated Damages: Analysis of the vendor’s exposure to penalties and
liquidated damages is essential. It indicates its attitude towards commitment to complete the work as per schedule achieving customer satisfaction
Order Book of the Vendor: The vendors have the tendency to book orders
beyond their capability and resources. This results in delay and poor quality. To avoid facing problems during the execution of project; need is to analyze the order book of the vendor with its available resources.
Dispute with Clients: Few vendors have a history of raising claims, enter
into disputes and go into arbitration instead of mutually resolving the issues. Such vendors are avoided.
Documentation of Punch Points
After under taking quality inspections the punch points need to be documented indicating the name of site, punch points, person who has carried out the inspection and name of cluster head/site engineer. Corrective action taken and removal of each point is recorded against respective punch points.
Supervision at site
The main objective of site supervision is to ensure that requirement as defined in contract documents are correctly interpreted and problems are satisfactorily resolved. Salient features are: • • • • • • Define responsibility so that there is no overlapping of activities and responsibilities Define specific functions of personnel and extent of delegation of powers, responsibilities and authority. Avoid passing of responsibilities especially incase of failures Supervisors are thoroughly conversant regarding the scope of work, quality standard required and resource available to him. Supervisors possess requisite knowledge Regular quality and performance checks by managers
FINANCIAL AND WAREHOUSE MANAGEMENT
Financial management of construction industry in general and telecommunications in particular are unique as well as complex. Unique because they are both different from manufacturing industry and complex because there are many areas where financing is required A good accounting system is a sine-qua-non for success of any project. It is no less for telecommunication projects, which involves execution of diverse
tasks in a tight frame through involvement of many agencies, vendors and person. The system should be transparent and meet the specific requirement of the project. o In telecommunication projects comprising of diverse types and numbers of items it is likely that few items are not invoiced, especially when terms of payments specify invoicing in phases. o Ensure that double payment is not released to the vendor o At a glance indicate the respective vendors work load o Indicate the overall expenditure per site. In order to meet the above requirements the following systems cater for the specific customized need of capitalization of expenditure site wise, financial control and cash flow to monitor expenditure.
o Template of Operations
o Invoices for all items raised to the customer o Invoices of all materials and services raised by vendors o Assists in compiling the estimated cost of respective sites.
o Vendors invoices Account
o Gives details of PO, amount, payment released taxes etc o Monitor the release of payment o Avoids double payment for the site
o Billing Status
o Correlates the expenditure between sites and respective vendors o Compiles over all expenditure of sites. o At a glance indicates the vendors work load
Warehouse Management Scope
o Design, develop the operating and accounting system of all telecom and passive infrastructure items o Round the clock security and up keep of warehouse o Provide adequate fire fighting equipment o Stock verification every month o Keep the management informed on the stock position
o Monitor the stock position of equipment and material critical to the project. o Monitor the unused material in good or non serviceable condition.
Stock position indicating the receipt , issue and balance material Site wise distribution of material and equipment Correlate the distribution of material to sites with respective invoices. Configuration of equipment: Gives details of vendors, make, serial numbers and capacity o Warranty and commissioning dates of each equipment o o o o
o Staff: It will depend upon the work load, customer’s requirement and the quantity and types of materials and equipment handled. Generally the following are required: o Ware House Manger One o Executive/Supervisor One o Helpers Two o Security guards 3 on 8 hourly basis
o Suitable timings for receipt and issue of materials/equipment are fixed depending upon terrain, location, customers/project requirement o Incase of emergency the material may be received or/and issued other than specified timings with specific permission of circle head or project manager.
It is of paramount importance that reconciliation of stock is carried out every month, preferably on the last day of the month and the variations, if any, are resolved at the earliest.
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To coordinate the entire O&M activities required for as well as warranty support as per the provision in respective agreements with the vendors and customers Coordinate with State Electricity Boards with regard to supply and consumption of power Filling and accounting of diesel for DG sets Assessing the requirements of running and major spares based on the past experience Ensure implementation of repairs and replacement parts covered under respective warranty clauses. Lay down response time for repairs and rectification in coordination of vendors and clients.
While designing the system the following to be considered: o Keeping in view the experienced gained from similar projects, compile the likely faults and the urgency of repairs. o The terrain, driving time and transportation system o Availability of vendors, type and availability of skilled labor and facilities o Analysis of running spares and repairs.
Generally the following major types of equipment/services are required to be maintained: o 15/25 KVA DG sets o 2x1.5 Ton/2x2ton Air conditioners o 400/330/360 Battery bank o SMPS o ACDB/Power Interface Unit o Commercial mains supply(including energy meter, power cables etc) o Fire detection system o Prefab shelter o Tower/ mast. (MW, GSM antennas if in scope) o Alarm system
• • Site wise details of commissioning reports of all equipment on sites Warranty certificates and clauses.
Details of equipment installed giving the vendor, capacity and serial numbers of each equipment. Details indicating site wise date and time of receipt and description of complaint, complaints, completion, spares used duly verified by the customer/site engineer.
Managed services projects have always been complex and are becoming even more so due to the evolution of telecommunication service providers’ (TCSP) requirements and new business expectations. As a result, it is becoming increasingly challenging to fully achieve all the business objectives associated with managed services today. In order to ensure success, TCSPs need to follow best practices for planning and implementing managed services. A set of success factors which will help in meeting business objectives for managed services projects: long-term business objectives, defining the scope for relevant services, a feasible and optimized implementation roadmap, customer-experience related business policies, business plan driven SLAs, alignment of commercial terms with business goals, proper vendor qualification, Business/Operations Support Systems (B/OSS) specific best practice implementation methodology, effective and efficient governance and leverage of market experience.
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