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1.    The Challenge

ABB asked FoCul to help make their proprietary pRIME© (Process Reliability and Integrity Management Excellence) consulting process more collaborative, consistent and efficient using a software solution.

The pRIME© process requires close collaboration across multiple teams and it was difficult to do this well and consistently using spreadsheets. The volume of information collected in the studies and the detail of the subsequent reports also meant that the reporting phase of the project was very time consuming.

The solution needed to be used by ABB clients working on their own or alongside the ABB experts. It needed to manage, maintain and present large amounts of confidential data from sites globally and to present this information in a structured way to allow end users to make effective decisions.

2.    The Solution

FoCul first developed the pRIME toolkit+© application in 2003 but it has been enhanced over time to include the latest versions of ABB’s pRIME methodology and the benefits of modern web technology. The application works equally well as a web based portal or as a standalone application and has been very successful in improving the quality and efficiency of the ABB pRIME© process.
The application has the following key features:

  1. Improved Collaboration and Knowledge Management

    The pRIME Toolkit +© allows all of the stakeholders to contribute and share knowledge. The knowledge is structured and searchable and there are dashboards to provide clear visualisation of data with the ability to drill down into the detail.

    Being web based both ABB and clients can work with the latest data simultaneously and diverging spreadsheets have been eliminated.

  2. Powerful Reporting

    Users can generate pre-configured or ad-hoc reports using familiar Microsoft applications such as Excel and Word. Pre-configuring reports ensures that consistency and best practices are maintained across multiple projects. Reports can run to hundreds of pages and spreadsheets can contain many thousands of data points.

  3. Tailored to each project

    ABB has configured different project portfolios to suit different customer sectors such as Oil & Gas or Pharmaceuticals. The application forms and reports are specifically configured for each of these portfolios. This approach gives a great deal of flexibility while still promoting consistency and best practices.

  4. Security

    The system is secure with multi-tiered access and data encryption. The system is used to hold data for hundreds of projects and clients globally.

  5. Offline or Online Working

    The web based portal is clearly structured, intuitive and has simple navigation. Offline access is also available and is important to ABB when working at remote sites were connectivity was limited.  All offline work is automatically synchronised to the web portal when connectivity becomes available.

3.    How we delivered the solution

We have a long term relationship working with ABB.  These customer testimonials from worked with them to deliver and support the pRIME application:
“FoCul delivered an excellent overall system – there were some twists and turns in the project and some additional work added half way through which often happens but all this was well dealt with.”
“FoCul made sure the application worked and was robust.  They dissuaded us of some ideas which looked good on paper but they felt wouldn’t work in practice – we appreciated that.”
“We developed a good relationship with FoCul.  They are very good at listening and talking through solutions and responding to any issues raised.”
For more information on our project processes please see our website  :

4.    Demonstrated Benefits

The demonstrated benefits of the solution are as follows;

  1. Improved Collaboration

    The ABB pRIME© process is fundamentally about collaboration between experts in ABB and experts in their client organisations. The pRIME toolkit +© application enhances this collaboration by giving suitably controlled access to all members of the project so that information and project status can be viewed in real time.

  2. Consistent workflow and reporting

    By moving from spreadsheets to a dedicated application with a web portal the consistency and sharing of best practices has been significantly improved across projects, teams and customers. The structured stage gate processes ensure that all of the stakeholders can contribute to the collaborative process while still ensuring that the integrity of the data is maintained. Both the client and ABB are able to contribute information up until the formal review stage gate is closed.

  3. Reduced costs

    ABB have stated that the solution provided a “30% efficiency saving, allowing ABB to deliver over £12M of studies more competitively since 2002” – David Stanier, ABB Project Sponsor

5.    About FoCul

FoCul specialises in developing collaborative solutions for engineering and manufacturing teams. We are unusual in that we have a mixed team of experienced manufacturing professionals and IT developers. Please see for more information.