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10 factors offshore accommodations must address for efficiency and morale

Published By: Gulfland Structures on November 7th, 2016

10 factors offshore accommodations must address for efficiency and morale

There’s a lot to consider when selecting offshore accommodations – countless factors interact to determine the end result of your purchase. The cost of upkeep, initial installation expenses, the impact on employee morale, and turnover all have an effect on branding and marketing. Offshore accommodations can have quite the impact on your bottom line as well.  With so many opportunities and pitfalls condensed into a single decision, it’s important that you pick well; this article will help.

1) Hygiene facilities.

Living quarters should be designed to promote health through hygeine. Poor personal care can cross contaminate many areas, such as the kitchen and food preparation areas. Your employees must exist in an environment in which good hygiene is promoted.

2) Private spaces.

Space may be at a premium on any offshore facility, but privacy is an essential to a well adjusted life. Without some semblance of privacy laborers may become disillusioned and angry. This will no doubt have an am adverse affect on their professional performance.  Something as simple as a locker, a curtained-off bed, and a private lamp can go a very long way. These small creature comforts will go a long way to establish good morale.

3) Scalable design.

Not every business needs to consider it, but businesses should consider scalability (where applicable) in regards to offshore living quarters. Inadequate accommodations can cause serious barriers to future growth. Instead of being able to expand as needed, you’ll have to decide whether the profits exist to make a complete replacement affordable.

4) Energy efficient.

An energy efficiency design can save immense amounts of money over time. Poorly designed facilities can cause waste in countless ways, both obvious and obscure. You only need look at how amazingly complex something like LEED standards get to see the various ways energy gets wasted in a building. A bad design can force employees to climate control largely unused areas or keep lights on during the day. A good one does exactly the opposite, making ever use of energy effective and limited.

5) Weatherproofed.

You shouldn’t have to decide between keeping costs down and keeping your workers comfortable; well designed offshore accommodations should be weatherproofed, in the same way that a well-designed living or working space on the shore is weatherproofed. A lot of this will be out of the hands of the manufacturer—if you hang doors poorly or don’t put proper sealants in place, the best design in the world will leak air like a sieve. But you should start from a good base point, something that won’t require excessive effort to get properly prepared.

6) Easily maintained.

Maintenance can be an expensive pain due to faulty parts, expensive replacements, or difficult to access infrastructure.  The tedious work of replacing the same parts repeatedly can lower morale.  Replacement parts can also be very difficult to obtain on an offshore facility. That means a problem can linger, agitating your crew for far longer than it should.

7) Responsive support.

Things go wrong. It’s just the nature of the beast. If something goes wrong with your offshore accommodations and you need to speak with customer support—to order replacements or seek advice—then you want someone to respond quickly and thoroughly. You don’t want to add five or six days of waiting for someone to call you back.

8) Effective sleeping spaces.

Poor sleep can be the biggest enemy of productivity. As an offshore operator you control the quality of sleep that your employees can get more than most employers. If you put them in good living quarters with quality bedding and general comfort, you’re going to get well-rested employees. On the other side, poor quarters can and will result in less rested employees, which will cause mistakes that your company simply cannot afford to make.

9) Entertainment options.

While it’s not necessarily inherent to the accommodations themselves, it’s something to consider when making your selection. You need appropriate spaces to help workers stay busy, so make sure that you choose accommodations that will keep your employees entertained. If there’s nowhere convenient to relax, your employees will be less relaxed—and that can impact your bottom line substantially.

10) Safety.

Even a minor safety issue can become a catastrophe off-shore—and for this reason, even the perception that your offshore accommodations aren’t safe can be devastating to employee morale and satisfaction. That’s why it’s important to choose accommodations that meet all necessary standards, and feel secure and safe as well. Employees shouldn’t spend fitful nights worrying that a storm will sweep their living space into the ocean, even if that concern might be ridiculous.

Parting thoughts

Offshore accommodations are one of the more unique investments a company makes, as few companies need to struggle so directly with the off-the-clock worries of their employees. Get it wrong, and no amount of pay will keep good workers around. Get it right, and not only will you be able to acquire and retain superior talent, you’ll save money and make your brand look better than ever to investors and the public. It’s well worth taking your time to make a decision you’ll be satisfied with.

8 Reasons To Upgrade Your Workers’ Offshore Living Conditions

Published By: Gulfland Structures on September 6th, 2016

8 Reasons To Upgrade Your Workers’ Offshore Living Conditions

When the time comes to buy offshore oil rig living quarters, it’s crucial that you take the time to consider how they’ll impact every facet of your workers’ living conditions. It’s not enough to provide the minimum requirements — this is one place you don’t want to be cutting costs to the bone or pinch every possible penny. Before your next purchase impacting worker living conditions, make sure you have these eight points in mind.

1) Basic Morale

At the most basic level, it’s clear that the quality of worker living conditions will impact morale over time. If you get off work and still have to deal with the frustrations and discomforts of an ill-equipped workplace, you’re going to be unhappy—even if you’re satisfied with the compensation you’re receiving. On the other hand, good living conditions work as non-monetary compensation to make you more satisfied and energetic on a daily basis, making for better employees across a wide array of metrics.

2) Sleep quality

If your workers can’t sleep well, they’re not going to work well. The impacts of poor sleep on work performance have been thoroughly researched and documented. At a relatively dangerous workplace like an oil rig, those mistakes and slips in performance can have massive consequences. Good living quarters provide the right conditions for workers to sleep when they need to—even if there’s still a good deal going on around them.

3) Health

Just looking at the question of sleep quality and stress, we can see how quickly living quarters might impact worker health. Go a few steps further, and you’ll see issues of safety, difficulty maintaining sanitation, air quality, and other problems which might directly impact worker health. As bad as a sickly workforce might be anywhere else, the problems of dealing with health issues offshore pushes this from annoyance to potentially disastrous.

4) Hygiene

If it’s not easy or pleasant to maintain good hygiene. For example, if showers are unpleasant, then not everyone is going to. It’s disappointing, but its basic human nature. Once people start to slip on hygiene, health, and morale, in turn, will slip. It also creates a far less appealing work environment for new hires and people skilled enough to find work elsewhere (as we’ll discuss next).

5) Turnover

Living quarters may not become an immediate issue for most workers, but over time the frustrations of bad quarters will increase worker turnover. It’s quite simple; no one wants to be miserable off the clock too, no matter how rugged and determined they may be on the clock. Compensation can only go so far. Thus, the quality of worker living conditions directly impacts your rate of employee turnover—especially when looking at your most talented and driven employees, who likely have other options.

6) Hiring

If you can brag about the quality of living conditions on your rig, then that’s something you can use to hire better employees cheaper. It’s one of those factors which offers benefits to your company disproportionate to the cost; you can maintain a superior workforce at a lower rate of compensation, so long as you’re providing a nicer place to live off hours than your competitors. If you want to secure superior talent without paying excessively or risking high turnover, invest in good living conditions. It will pay for itself.

7) Insurance

All the things we discussed earlier, plus problems like maintenance and equipment failures, tie into determining how much you’re spending on insurance: for your rig, equipment, and your workers’ health. All of it. If you can present a superior, safer, more reliable face to the world, then you can accordingly negotiate lower insurance premiums, saving you money over time. It also makes it far less likely you’ll need to leverage your insurance, the one thing which will inevitably drive up insurance expenses across the board.

8) PR and marketing

If you can point to your workers living conditions with pride, that’s something you can utilize in marketing and public relations. It can be leveraged to appeal to investors, gain equity with the public, and insulate you against the inevitable occasional bad press. On the other side of the equation, poor living conditions can become a PR nightmare, exploding into a story disproportionate to the problem. No one wants to invest in a company in the headlines for poor worker treatment, regardless of how accurate those headlines may be. Make your living quarters a point of pride, and let them pay for themselves.

Final thoughts

As you can see, there are a lot of factors which ultimately tie back to the quality of the living quarters you’ve chosen to house your employees in. It’s a unique problem to face as a business, but also an opportunity. Good quarters can have as strong a positive impact on your bottom line as bad quarters might have a negative. Take your time, and pick the best option for you and your workers.

 

Sources:

 http://www.huffingtonpost.com/carolyn-gregoire/sleep-workplace_b_3294409.html

http://med.emory.edu/staff/resources/Performance/Non-monetary%20Compensation.html

7 Factors to Assess When Choosing Offshore Living Quarters

Published By: Gulfland Structures on August 12th, 2016

When making a purchase of something as important to your operations as offshore living quarters, it’s crucial that you do your research and make a good investment. Low-grade quarters can quickly become an anchor dragging at your profits in dozens of ways: maintenance costs, energy expenses, low worker morale, health issues, the list goes on. To make sure you’re buying quarters you’ll be satisfied with for years to come, we recommend you take the following 7 factors into account when making your decision.

1) Build Quality

It may be an obvious place to start, but it bears pointing out nonetheless. There’s a massive difference between a well-designed structure made in accordance with all the best practices and standards of the industry and one which skirts the edge, barely meeting the necessary legal obligations. Not only will inferior build quality rarely go hand-in-hand with anything else you want on your structure, it will inherently increase the amount you spend on maintenance and upkeep.

Inferior structures might even increase your legal liability, at the very least increasing your insurance premiums compared to what you might see with a more reliable build in place. In other words, cheap today means expensive over time, one way or another.

2) References

Perhaps the simplest way to assess a company in any industry, is to ask for references. Make sure the references you speak with or hear from share your needs and goals. Just because someone else had a perfect experience with the company and its products does not mean you’ll see the same results if your situations aren’t analogous. Don’t forget to ask about the scenarios where a good company most makes a difference: the ones where something went wrong and a conflict needed to be resolved. These tell you far more than the experiences of people with uneventful stories.

3) Worker comfort

An indestructible steel box may be sturdy, low-maintenance, and cheap, but there’s more to consider in living quarters than that. Your workers will be living in these places. In a way few businesses must, you need to account for the quality of their time off the clock. Such direct control over employees’ rest time is a heavy responsibility. Get it right, and worker morale and productivity will exceed all expectations. Get it wrong, and you’ll face high turnover of your best employees and reduced productivity from the ones that can’t escape to another employer.

Think of this not as a headache to be dealt with, but as an opportunity. Good living quarters not only improve productivity for existing workers, they can serve as a recruitment incentive to improve the quality of incoming employees.

4) Health and hygiene

Along the same lines, you need to consider how conducive the design of your offshore living quarters may be to employee health and hygiene. It’s not enough that it be possible for employees to maintain general well-being, it needs to be a pain-free experience. Weak showers, poor sleeping conditions, and even bad layouts can make basic self-upkeep a frustrating task for your workers. This means you could lose morale, health and hygiene, or both.

5) Energy Efficiency

We’re talking about living quarters, so we need to consider energy efficiency as we would for other types of housing. Poorly designed and insulated quarters can quickly become either miserable for workers or costly for employers; either one is to be avoided at all costs. While HVAC and other energy expenditures for your living quarters may be a mere drop in the bucket compared to the expenditures of your operation, there’s no reason to throw money away when a superior design could save it.

6) Scalability

While it isn’t a concern on every operation, any facility you anticipate some degree of growth for needs to be easily scalable. Carefully think about your needs and expectations, then choose something appropriate.

7) Warranties

As with references, this one works no matter the product or service you’re looking at. A business confident with its product will meet or exceed industry standards, because doing so makes sense for marketing and won’t cost them anything significant. A company offering sub-standard promises simply isn’t worth working with because it betrays a lack of confidence.

In other words, a good warranty can indicate an unnecessary warranty. A bad warranty means a product you’re far more likely to need a warranty for.

Parting thoughts

As you can see, a lot of factors go into determining the best offshore living quarters for your operation—and any weakness can quickly turn into a headache with rapidly compounding expenses. Poor build quality doesn’t just cost more in maintenance, it leads to more worker frustrations, hygiene issues, and discomfort. Low energy efficiency directly effects how scalable a particular operation may be, and may have implications for worker comfort as well. A bad warranty can also leave you in a messy situation during a breakdown or malfunction.

So take your time, perform thorough research, and choose the right offshore living quarters for your business.

 

Sources: 

Rosekind MR, et. al. The cost of poor sleep: workplace productivity loss and associated costs. J Occup Environ Med. 2010 Jan;52(1):91-8. Available at: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20042880 [Retreived 8/1/2016].

 

Using Offshore Accommodations to Combat Stress on the Job

Published By: Gulfland Structures on June 15th, 2016

It’s no secret–offshore oil rig work is some of the most stressful work any person can do. The work is dangerous. Hours are long. Living accommodations are often very tight, which can create additional irritations. While workers are well-compensated for these risks they nevertheless represent a problem for employers.

Accidents, mistakes, and on-the-job deaths are far more costly than anything your company could spend on making oil rig work less problematic. An up-front investment into accommodations which make employees happy makes outstanding business sense.

Consider this analysis by Dr. Valerie J. Sutherland and Professor Cary L. Cooper of the Manchester School of Management and the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology:

“Life offshore has been described as dangerous, arduous, and socially isolating; the environment is characterized by constant noise and activity in sometimes crowded and unnatural living conditions. Indeed, added pressures exist because of the element of uncertainty which is inherent to the industry, as each new discovery area brings previously unencountered problems, and the market is characterized by the price instability of oil and gas commodities.”

These experts went on to identify a series of stress factors. Factor 7 was about living conditions. Common complaints included having inadequate leisure facilities to occupy free time, shared accommodations, having inadequate facilities for physical exercise and a lack of privacy.

In Factor 10, “physical well-being,” the authors also cited a lack of “quiet” rooms–places to unwind when employees were off-shift. Employees are often forced to either settle down in the mess hall or retreat to their bunks when they are off duty. Often, there is no “in-between” space to be found.

Quite a few of these issues can be alleviated by choosing offshore accommodations, and there’s a real business case for making this effort.

The Price of Employee Stress

Stress leads to injuries, injuries lead to accidents, and both injuries and accidents cost money. Here, we will consider the business case for working to reduce and relieve workplace stress. Consider these figures from OSHA:

  • The average cost of an “OSHA recordable” accident is $75,000 per event.
  • The average cost of lost time or a lost workday case was $1,200,000 per event.
  • OSHA also tracked the cost of one very common accident: parted drill lines and dropped blocks. These typically cost $3,900,000.

A small contractor stands to lose even more when workers are stressed. OSHA estimates a single incident could cause a small contractor to suffer 28 or more days at zero profitability.

Many executives choose to shrug off the problem of employee stress, feeling offshore workers should “accept what they get” and “feel happy to have a job that pays so well.” Unfortunately, the numbers prove executives who adopt this hard line do so to the detriment of the bottom line.

Which Problems Can Smart Offshore Accommodations Solve?

First, let’s talk about recreation facilities. Our modular, stackable offshore accommodations include a rec room option. We strongly suggest each of our clients consider this option as an easy way to reduce employee stress.

It’s also easy to devote space to a “quiet room.” Office space could be used for this purpose, though of course that would depend upon your space limitations. You would simply need to furnish the space with comfortable couches and chairs, designating it as a place for reading, quiet conversations, or other low-energy pursuits.

Finally, you can make even a shared 8-man unit very pleasant and inviting. While this does not necessarily solve privacy problems (shared space is shared space) it can nevertheless make employees feel more welcomed and cared for. Features like large windows, comfortable beds, and beautiful surroundings can help your crew sleep better–a must, if the demands of your business require a 12-on, 12-off shift. We can’t necessarily reduce noise–a rig is a rig–but we can create a “home away from home” atmosphere.

Help Employees Find Other Ways to Reduce Stress

Use employee documentation to suggest ways rig workers can adapt to offshore living. Accommodation design cannot solve everything. However, there are also small items employees can bring in order to make life easier.

For example, noise-cancelling headphones are a great investment, allowing employees to relax and feel like they’re getting quiet time in their bunks. One bleeding-edge model called the Everest Elite 300 actually allow users to adjust how much noise they let in. Employees could leave just enough capacity to hear any important alarms but could block out almost everything else. Suggesting a tablet or an e-reader loaded with enough new books for the entire journey is another helpful solution, giving employees a chance to enjoy a mental escape if they don’t want a physical one.

Obviously, your company policy may create some restrictions on what your crew brings from home in order to cope with the stress of offshore living, as will size and weight restrictions. However, try to think outside the box and suggest small, helpful items which can make a world of difference.

Our offshore accommodations are designed to reduce employee stress and improve employee morale.

If you’d like to learn more about how our offshore accommodations can make a real difference, take one of our 3D tours or speak with one of our representatives. We can customize your design options and design the perfect offshore accommodations for your rig. You’ll soon be reaping the benefits that come from running a happy, well-rested crew.

Sources: 

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/08/09/AR2010080904083_2.html

http://www.offshorecenter.dk/log/bibliotek/wc-vs-cc-96[1].pdf

http://www.oshasafetyconference.org/events/ugm/osha2012/presentations/Hubler,%20Warren%20-%20Business%20Impact%20of%20Injuries%20Incidents.pdf

10 things to get right with your offshore oil rig living quarters

Published By: Gulfland Structures on May 15th, 2016

Offshore Oil Rig

When choosing offshore oil rig living quarters, there are a few things to keep in mind. They play a big role in determining how satisfied your employees are with you as an employer, day in and day out. It’ll determine their ability to relax, sleep well, stay hygienic, etc. To make certain you’re getting your offshore oil rig living quarters exactly right, keep these ten things in mind:

1) Bed quality

The quality of sleeping arrangements in your offshore oil rig living quarters can be easily correlated to overall productivity of your staff. Why? Because poor sleep leads to tired workers, and tired workers make mistakes, drag basic tasks out and get sick more often. By making sure your workers can get a good night’s rest when they settle in for the evening, you equip them to do their best for you when morning comes and they’re back on the clock. Studies have made the impact of sleep deprivation on work quality quite clear over the years. In a situation where sleep quality is under your control, the decision should be clear.

2) Climate control

Good climate control can mean the difference between wholly miserable workers and completely satisfied workers. Pay close attention to this aspect of your living quarters. You could end up wasting money if the climate control system isn’t up to snuff, so it’s doubly important to get right.

If the quarters you’re looking at don’t come ‘out of the box’ with good climate control, you’ll need to account for that independently. Don’t ever assume you’ll be able to figure it out after the fact. This should be sorted out before complete installation and final checks.

3) Hygiene facilities

If it’s difficult for your workers to stay clean, this won’t just reduce morale, it could result in greater rates of illness. Little things can become big problems when not properly considered. By making showers and rest a pleasant activity, you gain a boost to morale and keep your facilities cleaner and more productive.

4) Layout

Try to make sure there aren’t unnecessary twists, turns and detours. It may not seem important, but over time, little frustrations, flaws, and time-wasters inherent in poor design will add up to lost efficiency and grumpy workers. If it doesn’t look reasonable to deal with on a daily basis, it probably isn’t.

5) Personal space

Personal space for your crew should be a high priority. While they don’t need their own rooms, a bit of control over the environment can go a long way. If you’re looking for more compressed quarter options, make sure everyone has their own space with personal lights and other little details. It may not seem like much, but giving employees more control will keep them satisfied with their living quarters and lead to greater productivity.

6) Scalability

If you anticipate growth, this is a major consideration. Some units are extremely amenable to growth, allowing you to pop in another and double your space without hesitation. For others, expansion will represent a major effort. Think carefully on your scalability needs before you make a decision.

7) Build quality

Poorly built and designed offshore oil rig living quarters may come with a lower price tag on the front end, but you could end up spending more than anticipated in repairs, upkeep, replacements, and other associated headaches. You also expose your workers to potential inconvenience, injury, and health issues when you go with a less reliable solution. It’s better to go with quality that will last a long time without incident.

8) Customer support

If you need to order additional quarters or replacement parts, you don’t want it to be a hassle. This goes double for resolving issues with the units; if you need help to fix a major inconvenience, and can’t get anyone on the phone for days at a time, you’ll regret it no matter how great the initial deal was. Make sure good customer support is ready and available in case of an emergency or repair.

9) Warranties

If something goes wrong, who pays for it? Given the money involved, and the difficulty of making repairs offshore, you want a strong warranty. A company with confidence to offer a strong warranty puts enough care into its products that you likely won’t need a warranty in the short term. Be sure to factor this into your decision.

10) Safety features

Legal and ethical ramifications aside, safely-built living quarters should be a high priority. You don’t want employees getting injured under any circumstances: it’s bad for PR, morale, and insurance premiums. Everyone’s going to meet international standards, but the ones that go a step further deserve special attention.

5 reasons you should care how your employees feel about their offshore accommodations

Published By: Gulfland Structures on April 15th, 2016

 

 

When choosing offshore accommodations, it behooves employers to take a close look at what they’re purchasing, and consider matters from the employee standpoint. After all, employees will be spending quite a lot of time in these accommodations, meaning the knock-on effects from problems can permeate throughout your entire company’s operations. Just consider these five reasons to take care in making your decision, and always keep the employee experience in mind:

 

1) Morale

The most basic, pervasive element to consider when selecting offshore accommodations is morale. In a poor environment, employees will become disgruntled and deliver inferior performances. With an excellent environment, they’ll be satisfied and put in far more effort far more successfully. This is, if anything, more important for businesses operating offshore, as they become almost solely responsible for determining overall morale and quality-of-life for their employees.

When looking at a business where employees go home at the end of the day, the employer and the environment they provide only accounts for a third of the day’s experience, roughly. But with an offshore business utilizing offshore accommodations, the entirety of an employee’s day becomes the organization’s responsibility. This multiplies the effect of the work environment on morale—which can be a strength as easily as a weakness, if you take the time to find the right accommodations.

 

2) Recruitment

The quality of your offshore accommodations needs not limit its advantages to current employees, of course. You can also use them as an enticement when recruiting—with decent housing available, you’ll find you can hire out superior quality without paying nearly as much. It’s as powerful and enticing a benefit as anything else you might offer, especially for those more savvy, more thoughtful employees businesses most desire to have on their payroll.

Conversely, nothing will hamper your recruitment efforts more than a reputation for terrible living conditions. It’s not at all uncommon for people to hear about such matters through friends and acquaintances, and thus avoid troublesome companies as best they can—after all, no one wants to work and live in an uncomfortable, frustrating environment. So make sure you’re avoiding chronically broken, uncomfortable, or simply poorly designed accommodations for your employees.

 

3) Retention

On the opposite side of the equation, you should consider the importance of good accommodations n employee retention. You don’t want to find yourself training and retraining an endless parade of short-time employees, accumulating those with no prospects of a better job and losing everyone with even marginal talent. The cost of training, loss of skill, and general instability can cause massive damage to your business over time, even if you ignore every other factor.

On the flip side, good facilities can help keep retention high even if you’re not offering the best pay or benefits in the industry—living quarters mean a lot to employees, given how much time they’re going to spend in them over their careers. They can thus carry as much weight in keeping good workers on board as a good healthcare plan or access to a company car might for an on-shore business—if not more.

 

4) Health and Hygiene

It might surprise you if you don’t think about it much, but the quality of offshore accommodations can have a measurable effect on the overall health and hygiene of your employees. Simply put, good facilities make it easier to keep up with such matters after a hard day of work, whereas bad ones can turn simple daily tasks into a colossal headache for your workers. Day after day of frustration can quickly turn into mild to moderate apathy, with off-the-clock employees allowing themselves to slip here and there.

It shouldn’t be necessary to explain how problematic this can become for your company—and these are only the indirect results of frustrations. If sleeping and other matters become difficult become of sub-par facilities, it can have an even more directly deleterious effect. The last thing you want on your offshore facilities are a bunch of sickly, surly, tired employees.

 

5) Branding

Public perception can have a bad impact on any business in any industry—even those who ordinarily think of themselves as companies outside of the public limelight can find themselves negatively effected by bad rumors, news articles, etc. Similarly, companies which can become well-regarded within their industry can thrive, even if they’re mostly working with business partners and customers who are apathetic to public reputations.

With this in mind, it’s important to carefully consider the state of your employees. No one wants to find their company at the center of one of those unpredictable perfect storms of negative PR. Such an event can damage your company in myriad ways; investment, partnerships, regulations, etc.

So it’s a good idea to make sure the way you house your employees offshore not only bears scrutiny, but represents you positively. The public regards businesses who treat their companies well positively, even when it doesn’t impact the quality of the product. This is still relevant even for offshore drilling operations with no direct business with the public.

 

Final thoughts:

As you can see, employee perception and usage of your offshore facilities will have a major impact on your business. It may not be readily apparent from day one, but over time you will see various changes based solely upon the quality of the housing your provide employees in their off time; when you consider the simple difference between employees on land, who get to go home, and employees off shore, who are dependent upon you for their relaxation time, it’s easy to see why this is such an important decision for your operation.

 

Sources:

 http://www.cbsnews.com/news/offshore-oil-rig-island-living-but-no-paradise/

7 Things to Consider When Buying Offshore Oil Rig Living Quarters

Published By: Gulfland Structures on March 15th, 2016

When purchasing offshore oil rig living quarters, it behooves a business to take its time in assessing vendors and their products. After all, good living quarters can quickly become a selling point for recruiting superior workers, maximize morale, minimize maintenance costs, etc. Inversely, bad living quarters can drive high turnover, excessive maintenance and repair costs, and drop productivity through the floor as morale plummets. With all this in mind, be sure to consider these seven things if you’re in the market for quarters:

The large offshore oil rig at night in gulf of thailand

1) Amenity quality

At the most basic level, you should assess living quarters the same way you would any other house, apartment, hotel, etc. The amenities offered, and their general quality of construction, will influence your employees’ quality of life immensely. This isn’t just a matter of how satisfied your employees feel in working for you, as important as that may be; it impacts factors such as sleep quality, hygiene consistency, injury and illness rates, and dozens of other factors you won’t notice until something goes horribly wrong.

If the quality of your living quarters isn’t up to snuff, nothing else on this list matters. Once you’ve cleared that first hurdle, you can consider everything else in turn.

2) Scalability

If you need to expand your operations and bring in more employees, will you be able to add to your choice of living quarters without a major ordeal? If this isn’t likely to be relevant to your business, you can ignore it as a feature, but if there’s even a chance that you’ll need to expand your quarters in the future it’s worth considering.

Whether it’s the physical convenience of adding additional quarters to what you have or the capacity of the firm in question to supply what you need, it’s important to consider from early on if such growth is even a small possibility.

3) Customer support

If you call the vendor, email them, or contact them however they prefer to be contacted, how long does it take to get in contact with someone who can help you? Once you reach that point, are you talking to someone that can actually help you with your situation, whatever it may be? Ordering new or replacement parts, looking at compensation due to a failure or flaw, asking for help with something that’s confused you in installation or upkeep, etc., you don’t want any of these things to be a long, slow slog.

To a degree, you can gauge this based on your initial contact with the vendor, but it’s also a good idea to ask directly about their customer service, the promises they’re willing to make and what other customers have to say.

4) Supply considerations

Can the vendor meet your needs in terms of capacity, delivery turnaround, etc.? Your initial order isn’t likely to be the only business you have with your living quarters vendor, of course—if something breaks down and needs to be repaired or replaced, how long will it take to get it in your hands and installed? A moderate delay can feel like an eternity offshore, so consider this carefully.

Also worth considering is the question of longevity; does the company in question have the sort of history that indicates it will still be around 10 years down the line, still ready to supply you with replacement parts and maintenance? If not, you should take that into consideration and make sure you’ll be able to maintain your quarters in the absence of the company, should such a thing come about.

5) Efficient layouts

A poorly designed living quarter can lend itself to inefficiencies in the day to day lives of your employees, so make sure you give the quarters a look over to make sure there’s nothing blatantly stupid about the layouts and other features. If normal activities take twice as long because of a design oversight, that’s wasted time and frustrated workers waiting to happen.

6) Material quality

Investigate the materials being used to build your quarters thoroughly—barely good enough isn’t really good enough, in most cases. You want something that’s going to endure whatever nature can throw at the outside and your workers can throw at the inside, lest you get bogged down in endless repairs and maintenance concerns.

You shouldn’t be afraid to ask questions about where the vendor gets its supplies, although not all of them will be eager to share. The more informed you are, the better your decisions should be.

7) References

There are some things you’ll never quite be able to figure out unless you’ve been a customer of the manufacturer or vendor for a while. That doesn’t mean you have to accept the gamble blind, though. You should ask for references—this is a commercial industry, so it’s a huge warning flag if the manufacturer can’t offer even a single satisfied customer to say their piece.

You can also look for reviews and other opinions, but keep in mind the basic truth of the internet and reviews in general: people are more likely to take the time to complain about something than praise it.

Final thoughts

By keeping these seven factors in mind, you’ll be far more likely to end up with living quarters you and your employees can live with happily. Just take the time to ask questions, think through the answers, and make the best possible choice for your company—the right decision can have a major impact, so it’s good to get it right.


Sources:

www.washingtonpost.com/news/on-leadership/wp/2015/07/30/the-average-worker-loses-11-days-of-productivity-each-year-due-to-insomnia-and-companies-are-taking-notice/

9 reasons to think carefully when looking at offshore living quarters manufacturers

Published By: Gulfland Structures on February 16th, 2016

When you have so many other things to consider—the equipment that gets the job done, transportation, basic logistics, etc.—it can be easy to let something like the quality of your offshore living quarters manufacturers slip past without a due amount of scrutiny. But: the quality of your living quarters can very, very quickly become a major issue for your operation, influencing morale, turnover, efficiency, and a host of other issues. Not convinced? Consider these nine simple reasons to take your time when choosing who to purchase quarters from:

Maintenance gets expensive

One of the most straightforward reasons to pay attention to the quality of any manufacturer you make major purposes from, maintenance concerns take on an entirely new degree of complexity for offshore living quarters. And when anything goes wrong out at sea, it’s inherently going to me more expensive to repair than the same problem on land, where supplies are far easier to come by.

If you ignore every other reason on this list, this alone should encourage you to put some thought into who you buy from; check their record, their references, and the quality of their products before you make a single purchase.

Replacing damaged parts can be difficult

Continuing on from the last point, even if you can afford to repair parts despite the increased cost of doing so at sea, the failure of a crucial system can spell disaster, ranging from simple frustration to major health and safety concerns—concerns you’ll be forced to contend with for significantly longer, if you require parts shipped in from the shore. Even a mild hiccup can cost you quite a bit all told, even ignoring the impacts on morale that any problem with quarters will inevitably have. Avoid these problems as much as possible—invest in top quality living quarters, built by a trustworthy manufacturer.

Poor facilities, poor hygiene

Moving on to usage issues with your offshore living quarters, it’s important to consider the value of good facilities in encouraging proper hygiene. You don’t want a team of workers who hate to take showers because of some problem with the facilities, or who don’t have easy access to other necessities and thus get lax as a result. Even ignoring the simple morale impact of poor hygiene on your workers, you don’t want anything less than stellar hygiene in a cramped offshore facility, for simple health reasons. Speaking of which…

Health hazards can ruin you

Every illness and injury offshore, like every maintenance issue, is inherently more difficult to deal with than that same issue on land. That means that if your cheap quarters manage to hurt someone in any way, you’re in for a world of trouble in expenses, morale loss, and, potentially, attention from government agencies. Safety is paramount for your offshore living quarters, and safety can’t be guaranteed unless the quality of the manufacturer is guaranteed. It’s simply not worth the risk to go cheap and not spend the time to consider your options.

Miserable living drives high turnover

The very nature of offshore living quarters means you face a very big potential problem: your workers don’t get to go home and relax after their shift. Instead of controlling their quality of life for 8 hours of the day, you control it for the full 24 hours. That means that if you’re housing them in low-quality, uncomfortable living quarters, they’re not going to stick around for long. What’s the value of a good paycheck, if you never, ever feel completely off the clock? And when turnover is high, profits plummet—training isn’t free, inexperienced workers aren’t as productive, etc. Take the time to make sure that ‘off the clock’ feels like ‘off the clock’, or you’ll surely regret it.

Productivity suffers without comfort

Continuing on from the last problem, even if your issues aren’t driving turnover (perhaps you offer truly amazing pay), there’s plenty of reason to avoid running your employees ragged with shoddy living conditions. If employees are tired because their sleeping arrangements suck, if they’re sickly, if they’re mad all the time because the showers are no good, those various factors are going to add up to lowered productivity across the board. Happy, comfortable employees work better than those same employees surly and miserable—so make the productive choice, and pay attention to your offshore quarters’ quality.

Good quarters help recruitment

Trying to get a better tier of worker to take jobs at your facility? Good living quarters can mean a world of difference to a savvy prospect. All things equal, employees will want to take the job where they’ll get to properly enjoy and wind down in their off-hours, which means that by investing in better quarters, you can get better employees at the same level of pay and benefits. That’s a massively profitable investment in the long term—it’s hard to beat the ROI on a decision that saves you on maintenance, insurance, productivity, and wages.

Inefficient designs waste money

You’ve certainly at one point or another in your life worked with a piece of equipment that wasted your time because of shoddy craftsmanship. Multiply that across all the daily activities which interact with your offshore living quarters, and you can imagine how much time poor facilities can truly waste over time. The individual problems don’t have to be big; if they add up to even a single wasted hour each day, you’re in trouble.

Bad companies go under, leaving you in a bind

When something goes wrong and you need replacement parts or equipment for your offshore living quarters, will the business you bought from still be around? Sub-par companies don’t last for long, and when they vanish and leave you with ‘legacy’ equipment, you’re in for a lot of hassle moving forward. Far better to work with a manufacturer you can depend upon to provide you with products and services for years and years to come.

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Sources: http://gulflandstructures.com/offshore-living-quarters-manufacturers.php

 

 

7 Things to Consider When Choosing Offshore Accommodations

Published By: Gulfland Structures on January 14th, 2016

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Offshore accommodation is a very important point to consider for any offshore operation—perhaps more so than many companies originally realize. When you’re dealing with offshore operations such as this, you lose the traditional ‘detox time’ your employees get by going home; all the pay in the world won’t make their rest hours better if you’re providing low-quality, difficult-to-maintain living quarters. So consider these 7 points when choosing offshore accommodations to keep costs down, morale up, and profits flowing:

Offshore maintenance gets pricey. When you invest in lower quality offshore accommodation, you’re going to see more things broken, more things not quite right, and more things dangerous and expensive to fix. You won’t save money except in the short term, and you might pay the price in more than just maintenance and repair costs—you might see injuries, morale loss, and any number of other headaches courtesy of your decision to not pay attention to where you’re placing your employees in their down-time.

Low morale means less efficient labor. By providing your employees with a better off-hours experience, they don’t end up nearly as run-down and miserable over their stint at your facility. Worn-down employees make mistakes, they take longer to complete basic tasks, and you can kiss any hope of ingenuity or excellence goodbye. Investing in superior offshore accommodation makes your labor more efficient, in the same way investing in better mechanics make your machines more effective.

Good accommodations reduce turnover. When you set up your employees in a situation where they know working for a competitor will mean taking a hit to their living situation, they’re going to be much, much more likely to stay on board—even if you’re not offering quite as much pay, or if they dislike their supervisor, or whatever else. Knowing you have a decent place to take a shower and rest your head means a lot to any worker. The opposite holds true as well—it’s very, very easy to lose workers, especially the best ones, when they know they could go elsewhere and not have to put up with terrible quarters.

Accommodations can be leveraged to recruit superior talent. When you have better living quarters to offer, you can point that out to potential recruits to secure talent your pay rate or benefits might not be able to secure. After all, accommodations can mean the difference between a worker feeling like they’re getting a decent rest between shifts, and feeling like they’re never really off the clock—your recruits will know that, and they’ll understand just what you’re offering if you can point to what your accommodations have to offer. You don’t even have to mention it yourself; in the circles you most want to have a good reputation as a solid employer, this is the sort of thing that’s going to get mentioned over and over if your quarters are good, or if they’re bad. The latter can be especially damaging to a company, so be very wary of what employees and ex-employees might have to say to promising new recruits.

Poor accommodations can lead to hygiene and health issues. If taking a shower is an ordeal, if every daily task of hygiene and health is made miserable due to low quality offshore accommodation, then you’re going to see dirtier, nastier workers each day. And those workers will get themselves and one another sick more often, cutting into your hours, driving up your insurance rates, and altogether creating easily avoidable wasted expenditures. Make keeping clean and healthy less of a hassle and you’ll have less problems.

Liability and low-quality offshore accommodations. Employees in offshore accommodations are more or less hostage to your decisions as a corporation—that makes things your fault when they go wrong; all the contracts and insurance in the world can’t promise you complete insulation from responsibility, so it’s important to alleviate risk by eliminating points where problems might arise. We’ve talked about health problems, injuries, and other problems which might arise from poor offshore accommodation quality, so this is just a reminder of the knock-on effect such problems might have. Even if everything goes right and insurance catches the problems, you might still end up losing more and more money to pumped up premiums.

Design inefficiencies waste time. Poor design can add up to quite a number of wasted man-hours over a long period of time, so consider how your offshore accommodation will be used and what the design might mean for daily activities. If maintenance is going to have to work twice as hard, if supply management’s a nightmare, if maintaining basic hygiene is a pain, etc., you are going to end up hurting your bottom line in the long run. Consider this well, or you’re going to end up wasting money because some engineer didn’t consider how much of a pain getting supplies from Storage Room A to Bathroom C would end up being.

There you have it—seven considerations for your business to keep in mind when choosing offshore accommodation. It’s entirely too easy to overlook the myriad effects on performance and expense which can arise as a direct result of the quarters you place your employees in, but hopefully; now that you’re thinking about it, you can dodge the traps and leverage the possibilities to fullest potential and maximize profits.

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Source:  http://gulflandstructures.com/offshore-accommodation.php

9 Reasons to be Picky When Choosing Offshore Living Quarters Manufacturers

Published By: Gulfland Structures on November 15th, 2015

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When you’re looking into offshore living quarters manufacturers, you need to carefully consider the impact the quality the manufacturer’s products will have on your bottom line. While it’s unreasonable to turn offshore living quarters into the equivalent of a 5-star hotel, low quality will hurt your bottom line—safety issues, morale issues, efficiency issues, these all add up over time.

It’s important that you look closely at manufacturers, and find one which can handily meet the standards of comfort, safety, and efficiency your business needs to thrive.

Here are 9 reasons to be picky and choose quality when selecting an offshore living quarters manufacturer:

#1  Maintenance and upkeep.

Let’s start with the most obvious trap of going cheap or apathetic in your selection of a living quarters manufacturer: long-term costs. As with anything else your company spends money on, cutting corners in selecting living quarters gets you what you pay for—cheap. And unlike many places where cheap can scrape by, living quarters are going to be well-used and well-abused by your employees, quickly unveiling weaknesses and flaws in the worst way possible.

Expect to need more maintenance, more repairs, more replacements, and more general upkeep costs over the life of low-quality quarters—a life which will be shorter than a superior manufacturer’s offerings.

#2  Energy efficiency.

A better-constructed set of living quarters will provide far superior energy efficiency, which adds up to major savings for your company over the life of the structure. The difference in climate control, water usage, and other expenditures of power can vary greatly with even minor changes. The most modernized living quarter structures, such as you can expect to see from top quality manufacturers, will feature these cost-saving improvements and allow you to maintain comfortable quarters without wasting money.

#3  Employee health.

When employees can’t rest well after a hard day of work, they get short on sleep. When they get short on sleep, their immune systems become compromised, and sickness runs rampant through your workers, costing your company countless man-hours and, depending on the benefits you offer, costing you increased insurance premiums and other expenses. Poor hygiene due to unpleasant or uncomfortable facilities only compound these problems. Improved quarters sidestep all of these problems.

#4  Design efficiency.

Poor design can cost real money over time, due to the time wasted dealing with such inefficiencies. If keeping your quarters supplied, clean, and maintained becomes difficult due to poor design, it creates expense points and points of frustration for your workers to deal with—ultimately costing you even more money as morale plummets.

#5  Employee morale.

Perhaps the most insidious problem to arise from poor quality living quarters, low employee morale manifests itself in any number of ways, all of them likely to hit your company in its bottom line. Chief among these problems is, of course, poor performance; no incentive can truly make up for substandard living quarters—even if you pay your employees well, manage them well, provide them with all the tools and supplies they need to do their jobs superbly, they’ll ultimately under-perform if they’re still suffering for their work off the clock.

#6  Employee turnover.

When other problems such as health, frustration with design issues, and general morale fall, employee turnover skyrockets. This can become a major source of financial loss for any company, especially when you consider that high-value, high-competence employees will be the first to leave your company; essentially, they’ll take the skills you value them for and utilize them to find employment where they can enjoy superior living quarters. This alone makes careful consideration of your living quarters manufacturer worthwhile.

#7  Image.

Facilities can serve as a form of marketing—and inferior living quarters can become a black mark against your company. Public attention to worker conditions is on the rise, and any business that doesn’t take such perceptions into account is likely to find itself on the wrong side of that attention. By installing superior living quarters in your offshore facilities, you improve your image with the public, potential and current investors, and prospective employees.

#8  As an incentive.

We’ve talked about image and turnover—now consider what this means for your own hiring opportunities. When you invest in better living quarters, you gain a powerful bargaining tool in recruiting superior workers for your company. In many cases, you might find that you can get better employees with less pay, if you invest in better living quarters.

#9  Injuries.

In the worst case scenario, poor living quarters can cause more than illness—they can result in injuries due to low-morale inattention, poor construction resulting in accidents, tired employee errors, etc. Nothing eats into employee morale, public image, and profits quite so quickly as an above-average injury rate at your facility. Not to mention…

#10  Liability.

When something goes wrong at an isolated location under your company’s control, it’s your fault, even when it’s not. That means investing in the soundest possible quarters for your employees and taking every effort to create an environment conducive to safe, effective, accident-free living and working. It’s simply not worth the risk. So work with a manufacturer you know you can trust, and keep your liability within manageable ranges.

These aren’t the only reasons to choose wisely when selecting a manufacturer for your employees’ living quarters, but they’re more than enough to make the case: good quarters are a good investment. Bad quarters cost more in the long term than they save, every time, in maintenance, efficiency, and morale. Make a choice you and your employees can live with happily down the line.

Sources: http://gulflandstructures.com/offshore-living-quarters-manufacturers.php