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Consep Pty Company’s Innovations Essay


Executive Summary

Consep Pty Ltd is a global international company based in Australia. The company has a reputation for providing innovative engineering solutions to the mining, construction, water, and wastewater industries. It applies innovative technologies, wide experiences, customized design, and excellence in manufacturing for the production of outstanding equipment for its global customers (Consep, 2013).

The company has been developing new or improving its existing products to meet unique needs of its global customers. Innovation in the area of ththe e formwork hoist has facilitated entrepreneurship in the company. The product has gained recognition in the international market, and it won the award of excellence in the Australian construction sector in 2011. Contractors prefer the product because it saves costs, time, and ensure safety of workers.

Consep relies on both in-house engineers and external partners for developing innovative solutions to its customers. In-house engineers provide the company with the flexibility it requires in order to customise clients’ products.

External partners ensure that the company gets novel designs and solutions that can serve diverse needs of its customers. Thus, innovation at Consep is a team effort rather than an individual’s initiative. Moreover, senior engineers with statuses also promote innovation at the company.

Innovations and entrepreneurship are difficult due to extreme weather conditions, high costs of material and labour and red tape systems during initiation of contracts in Australia. However, such factors have led companies to be efficient in their processes and develop effective products for Australia and the world.

Recent innovative achievements of Consep

In the recent past, the company has introduced new innovative products or improved on its existing equipment. These equipment and solutions include mineral processing plants, water, and wastewater treatment, and chemical facilities.

Grit Removal and Separation

Consep has introduced innovative ideas to the previous grit removal and separation system. The system aims to be economical minimize the number of waste materials users dispose of. The new technology has recognized various environments and global conditions.

Consequently, Consep has developed its equipment to remove minute particles in order to avoid damages to subsequent downstream processes. Moreover, the system can adjust to a given situation and produce the desired outcomes. It can suspend fine solids, which previous systems could not remove.

The company supplies grit washers, classifiers, and tanks. These features have the ability to protect downstream mechanical parts of the system and enhance the performance and reliability of the system. The washer has a reliable and automatic system for self-cleaning that enhances efficiency. Overall, the solution is relatively affordable.

Consep Holland Rotary Dryers

The company designed rotary dryers to offer long-lasting solutions in drying various products. The innovative solutions in these products allow users to save energy relative to other solutions. In addition, the new systems are also durable. The technology allows the material to dry by passing through the dryer cylinder under controlled conditions with a heated air stream.

The system uses dry air of varying degrees that range from 1000 C and above, but this depends on the type of product. It has the ability to allow users to apply both concurrent systems and countercurrent systems. It also allow users to choose various ways of air heating i.e., it has a drum, oil burner, or external duct system, which users can choose.

The innovative solution also protects combustible products by applying an indirect heating system. This can take place through heat exchange or outside shell heating. It can accommodate throughputs of hundreds of tonnes per hour.

Materials and Formwork Hoists

Consep developed the Consep Formwork Hoist in order to provide an efficient method of transferring concrete formwork. This system is more efficient than previous solutions. The company notes that the system provides savings to users in terms of days per floor. This solution saves up to two days per floor.

The design also lessens impacts on form of workers. In other words, it reduces human contact with concrete, which in turn offers efficiency and a win-win situation for contractors. The engineers designed the system to provide the utmost safety and time efficiency to users. This saves the costs of the project. Based on the efficiency, safety, saving, and utilization capabilities, the company got Hoist contract at the One World Trade Centre in New York.

The Collavino, the contractor picked the Consep Formwork Hoist as the best option that could ensure efficiency, safety, and reduction of costs in a high-profile project. As a result of this role, the company received “the Highly Commended award in 2011 from the Australia Engineering Excellence Award” (Consep, 2013).

Consep Flotation Technology

The company has different varieties of flotation technology. It has a reputation for supplying quality products to its clients. The latest solution involved the use of innovative approaches to building mechanical flotation cell with units.

It has in-house engineers who can design a flotation system with a complete range of modular flotation banks with pumps and instrumentation. In fact, Consep is the only licensee of the Eriez flotation technology. These are the leading solutions for column flotation, which have air injection technology too. The company has supplied these solutions for more than 15 years. It has customer from Australia, as well as South East Asia.

Such a large customer base is possible because the company has developed customized solutions for various plants and customers. It is also willing to work together with its partners and customers in order to include novel design features, which meet the specific demands of customers. This has led to the considerable success of the flotation technology.

This company has engineers who have been able to develop flotation cells within the company. Therefore, the company has been able to “meet clients’ needs in terms of design, quality, delivery, and budget” (Consep, 2013).

Alluvial Processing Plants

Consep has been the main supplier of innovative alluvial processing plants. The company has been able to apply innovative approaches in order to develop solutions that meet the specific needs of every client.

Consep applies its core technology of Knelson Concentrator and the Consep Acacia were necessary in projects. This recovery item has been able to meet various needs of customers because of customization. The company relies on its experienced and senior engineers to deliver such solutions. In addition, the company also works closely with other technology firms in order to provide a complete flow sheet, which can meet the specified client’s budget.

The company has been able to apply its vast experience in handling feeders, hoppers, and piping systems in order to ensure that alluvial products are successful.

Engineering innovation credited to the company

In 2011, the Australia Engineering Excellence Award went to Consep for its innovative Materials and Formwork Hoists (Engineers Australia, 2013).

The company got a contract from “Collavino for the One World Trade Centre (1WTC) construction” (Consep, 2013). The One World Trade Centre is among “the five largest buildings to be constructed at the New York World Trade Centre area” (Consep, 2013). During the planning stage, Collavino selected the Consep Formwork Hoist as an effective tool for cost reduction, efficiency, and safety for such a high-profile project in the world.

The company had to change its existing Consep Formwork Hoist in order to meet the specific needs of the construction. The company took the initiative of redesigning its formwork hoist to meet the needed specifications. As a result, its engineers managed to develop a new generation hoist that worked successfully on the project.

The hoist reached a finalist status under the category of the “Products, Manufacturing Facilities, and Processes” in the 2011 Australian Engineering Excellence Awards.

The new hoist had “the design, fabrication, installation, and capabilities commissioning of a 28-metre skip hoist transfer system delivering 2000 kg of asphalt to hot storage bins with air activated inlet chutes” (Consep, 2013). It had a cycle of 45 seconds time between the pugmill dump and return. The hoist had a capacity of 160 tonnes per hour. Moreover, it had all “safety buttons, gates, and actuating cams” (Consep, 2013).

Clients who chose the Consep new hoist did so because the system had abilities to add values to their construction projects. The company has supplied such systems for more than 40 years in Australia. However, innovation has found its way into the international markets and other busy construction sectors in the UK, the US, and Dubai.

On this note, Rod Leonard, managing director of Lycopodium comments, “It is common to see North Americans getting work done out of Australia” (Mining Media, Inc, 2011). The Perth-based engineer also notes that about 90 percent of his firm’s projects are from the mineral sector.

According to Mining Media Inc, Australia is not famous as a manufacturing center. However, the country has gained a global reputation as “mining and technology services” (Mining Media, Inc, 2011) country. The country’s engineer sector is closely behind Germany.

Engineering and innovations in Australia are a challenge due to several factors. As a result, engineers must ensure that all processes are efficient to counter expensive labor and materials.

Moreover, such innovative solutions must be able to withstand extreme weather conditions in Australia. Still, any innovative solution must meet standards set for local ecologies and communities. This results in the production of solutions that meet global standards and competition in the global marketplace.

Grant Steward, the managing director at Consep comments, “We can offer engineering companies flexibility by allowing them to change their minds throughout the process” (Mining Media, Inc, 2011). In addition, the company’s products also have high assembly components to provide the flexibility that most steel products require. He also adds that the company can adjust its processes until the last day of shipping.

Such comments highlight how engineering innovation at Consep is flexible. Steward attributes Counsel’s ability to “remain competitive in Australia’s high-cost manufacturing environment to the high value and level of customization of products” (Mining Media, Inc, 2011). Moreover, in-house processes facilitate flexibility that allows the company to change its manufacturing product designs to meet customers’ needs.

Consep has developed engineering and technology skills to address various aspects of engineering products. In fact, most Australian engineering companies have perfected their innovation and technology solutions. As a result, their products can withstand various weather conditions around the global. This has made such solutions competitive in the global markets.

Engineers and innovators have taken advantage of the unique Australian environment in order to provide turnkey solutions for various projects.

Most of these companies rely on their “renowned reputation for high levels of diligence and integrity at the planning stages, ensuring that contractual and organizational criteria are fully addressed” (Mining Media, Inc, 2011). This is the concept that Consep has utilized to develop competitive Materials and Formwork Hoists for the global markets.

Consep has been able to collaborate with other technology firms in order to deliver innovative solutions. According to a study by Cement Concrete & Aggregates Australia (CCAA), “the popularity of concrete framed structures in the Australian high-rise building sector is largely due to the presence of innovation and technology in the concrete construction industry” (CCAA, 2008).

In the Australian construction sector, formwork technology has emerged as a dominant design for high-rise buildings. Consep has perfected formwork hoists in order to create value through advancements and innovations.

Advancements of such technologies have led to a growing trend in formwork systems for high-rise buildings, which include “self-climbing jump forms for service and lift core construction, self-climbing perimeter screens with perimeter forms attached, and systemized floor form assemblies for suspended floor construction” (CCAA, 2008).

Form Hoist technologies have led to increased speed in construction, reduced reliance on tower cranes, and increased safety for on-site workers (Williams, 2007). Such advantages make innovative solutions attractive to many constructors (Hurd, 2005).

Aspects of diffusion and entrepreneurship associated with the innovation

The Consep Formwork Hoist has been able to gain international attention. For instance, the innovative solution of Consep got an award for engineering excellence because Collavino for “the One World Trade Centre (1WTC) construction chose it for such as large and a high-profile construction at the New York World Trade Centre site” (Consep, 2013).

This shows that the innovative solution has gained international attention and has ignited entrepreneurship at Consep.

The CCAA notes that the number of high-rise buildings in Australia have increased because of efficiency from advancements and innovations in formwork hoists. As result, the Formwork Hoist from Consep has become popular in “Australia and the world including China, Thailand, Japan, Philippines, Singapore, United Arab Emirates, and England” (Consep, 2013).

The solution provides an efficient means of moving concrete formwork to various points (Nawy, 2008). It is effective than the conventional methods of moving concrete formwork. According to Consep, the formwork hoist saves “up to two days of labor per floor” (Consep, 2013).

As a result, it saves the time of construction and labor costs. Consep designed the Formwork Hoist to “reduce the use of physical human labor, handling of materials, and provide the general efficiency to contractors and workers” (Consep, 2013).

Such efficiency and savings in terms of time and costs have proved that the Consep Formwork Hoist is popular among contractors. Moreover, the company is flexible in design i.e., it has in-house engineers who make sure that the Formwork Hoist meets the specific needs of a client. This was the case of Collavino. Consep had to modify its old model of the formwork hoist in order to meet the needs of the 1WTC construction.

The Formwork Hoist is remote-controlled within the sight of the hoist.

How an engineer with senior status functions as an innovator in the company environment

Many firms aspire to be innovative, and the needs for such desires permeate the entire company. However, most firms face challenges in generating creative solutions to their clients. At the Consep, the role of senior engineers with status is paramount to the success of the company.

Senior engineers have the role of providing a “work environment of openness built on trust where every member of the team feels free to express their views or opinions without fear of ridicule or reprisal” (Heskett, 2007). Senior engineers use positive reinforcement and flexibility in processes in order to enhance innovation.

Senior engineers have created a team of in-house innovators for the company. This allows Consep to change its products until the last day of the project. The CEO notes that the approach has allowed the company to save costs and work within the client’s budget.

Senior engineers have developed an innovative-friendly environment at the company. In addition, Consep works alongside other technology companies. The company has policies and practices that assist in nurturing and identifying areas of operations that require innovation.

Executives usually target innovative efforts. For instance, they identified the need to modify the Consep Formwork Hoist in order to meet various needs of clients. As a result, they always challenge fellow engineers about new ways of improving current products or creating new solutions.

They also play a role in decision-making about various innovative solutions. This is a principle that controls and guides innovative efforts at the company. Senior engineers with status also aim at strengthening accountability in order to facilitate results (Afuah, 2002; Fleddermann, 2008).

Circumstances that hindered and/or facilitated innovation in the company

One major challenge to innovation in Australia where Consep operates is the high cost of materials. Costs also affect labor. In addition, extreme weather conditions in the country are not friendly to innovation. Consep faces all these challenges like any other engineering firm in Australia.

At the same time, he needs to protect the local communities and ecologies are also important factors for innovative firms. These are external factors, which negatively affect innovation.

However, the above factors have created innovative firms like Consep. Consep has realized the need to promote efficiency as much as possible in order to counter the rising costs of labor, materials, and bare effects of extreme weather conditions in Australia. As a result, the final product can meet the global standard because natural disasters in Queensland have forced companies to develop climate resilient infrastructures through innovation.

Consep has collaborated with other technology companies in order to develop innovative solutions to their clients. For instance, Consep works with other firms in order to produce novel designs for flotation solutions.

According to Mining Media, Inc, most of Australia’s leading firms have ways of mobilizing and transferring human expertise to their parent firms. At the same time, they can transfer such knowledge to other areas. This approach has facilitated innovation in the company.

Some contract processes in Australia are demanding. For instance, executives spend most of their time dealing with lawyers and banks in order to initiate projects. Such red tape approaches have led to a poor concentration on innovation, clients, and entrepreneurship.

Consep has in-house engineers, who have allowed it to be flexible and innovative and customize products to meet customers’ specific needs.

References

Afuah, A. (2002). Innovation Management: Strategies, Implementation, and Profits. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

CCAA. (2008). Formwork advancements in multi‑rise concrete buildings. Concrete Concepts Technology Review, 1-4.

Consep. (2013). Retrieved April 14, 2013, from http://www.consep.com.au/default.aspx

Engineers Australia. (2011). Engineering Excellence Awards 2011. Sydney: EEA Sydney Division.

Fleddermann, C. (2008). Engineering Ethics. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall.

Heskett, J. (2007). What Is Management’s Role in Innovation? Retrieved April 14, 2013, from http://hbswk.hbs.edu/item/5821.html

Hurd, M. (2005). Formwork for Concrete (7th ed.). Farmington Hills: American Concrete Institute.

Mining Media, Inc. (2011). Designing and delivering the highest standards. Engineering and Construction [Engineering and Mining Journal] , 1.

Nawy, G. (2008). Concrete Construction Engineering (2nd ed.). London: CRC Press.

Williams, B. (2007). Formwork delivers efficiencies. Construction Contractor, 2, 33- 34.

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