To ensure that advantage, Offsite Manufacturing (OSM) has evolved from an option to something that is now part of our approach within the semiconductor/microelectronics market space. On most semiconductor projects, we have leveraged OSM to achieve schedules that would have otherwise not been possible. We team with sophisticated trade partners across the U.S. to develop and implement OSM strategies to maximize project outcomes. OSM helps JE Dunn deliver certainty of results to our clients.
Simply put, on a recent semiconductor project, JE Dunn utilized OSM to create a safer working environment while meeting a tight schedule. The team implemented OSM on two sets of mechanical/electrical pipe trestles that spanned high above the manufacturing buildings. The trestles contained significant mechanical and electrical systems that were designed to be prefabricated in multiple sections in an offsite facility. Each trestle section had specially designed structural connections for quick, but safe, field installations. The mechanical and electrical systems were also specially designed to enable prefabrication, utilizing flex connectors and valves, to minimize installation time. Once the trestle sections were complete, they were hoisted into their final location and successfully installed.
This OSM approach resulted in the following:
- 20% overall labor savings from a traditional in-field installation
- 30% of actual fabrication labor was conducted at an offsite facility (on the ground)
- 44% of overall labor hours (from a traditional in-field installation) were prevented from being subjected to winter conditions roughly 30 feet off the ground
Through our OSM experience, we understand that various regions and cities of the U.S. are at different stages of utilization. We have learned how to overcome initial reluctance of team members that often stems from minimal OSM experience. Through training and teamwork, trade partners can become OSM ready to support the execution.
A great example of this was on a past “clean link” project that connected two operating wafer Fabs. When developing the OSM strategy for the exterior skin system, the trade partner initially advised it would be a six-figure added cost to implement. After many meetings and refinements of the strategy and pricing, the added cost shifted to an estimated six-figure cost savings, which was later realized at the completion of the work. The majority of the initial price increase was simply based on minimal past OSM experience and perception of increased risk of implementation. OSM takes perseverance and continuous communication.
OSM Strategies must be developed at the onset of the project.
To begin the process, key overall questions need to be asked, such as:
- Are there systems or scopes that are scalable or repeatable?
- Is the schedule aggressive?
- Does the site and schedule sequencing afford appropriate laydown space and manpower?
The OSM strategy will be developed based on these sample questions as well as follow on detailed questions. On many past OSM projects, we served as the Design-Builder and had the ability to drive the OSM process from Day 1 since we lead the design. On non-Design-Build projects, we encourage our clients to engage JE Dunn at the earliest possible point in the design phase to ensure the design and constructability can be steered to maximize OSM which also means maximizing dollars and schedule. In addition, early trade partner engagement is equivalently crucial to the success of the process, which is why we customize our OSM strategy on every project. In summary, early planning and communication are major keys to successful OSM outcomes, which are vital to meeting aggressive schedules in the semiconductor industry.