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Optimising Cost

Optimising Cost

Maintaining a railway is expensive

Tags: Infrastructure Innovative Solutions Manufacturing Value - Optimised Cost

Maintaining a railway is expensive - that’s a given. So when you’re spending your budget you want to make sure that you optimise it so you can do as much as you can. 

So it’s tempting to look at every cost line and do your best to reduce it. But is that really the right thing to do? Counter-intuitively, increasing investment in one area can lead to achieving more across your activities - activities that add more value than the cost would suggest.

Let’s look at an example. Suppose you have an electrification project and you’ve ordered in all the equipment you need for the cantilevers. It arrives over a few weeks from the various suppliers and you get it booked into your stores.

Your technical team at the project are excellent - experienced and dedicated to their work. And you know that they can complete the assembly of the cantilevers in good time for when they’re needed. So once the final delivery of parts arrives, they crack on with assembling the cantilevers ready for installation. Remember too that your steelwork isn’t quite where the design thought it would be (there was an area of soft earth and a rocky area so they had to be shifted a bit) so they have to adjust the kit as they assemble it.

Great - now you can get on with the installation.

But wait. Look at all that time that was spent:

  • Ordering from different suppliers

  • Holding stock

  • Technical guys spending time doing the assembly.

If you hadn’t had to wait you would have been able to accelerate the possession. And holding that stock costs you money in the depot or materials area (security costs, too). And then your technical team doing assembly work when they should be installing the equipment.

All these are hidden waste and costs - and they can be eliminated by partnering with experts to:

  • Procure and stock all materials (including scarce or short-lead time equipment by searching the supply chain)

  • Assemble the parts to a standard that requires only minor on-site adjustment

  • Deliver-in to your possession on the day the materials are required.

Time is money. So the money you invested with the partners:

  • Reduces possession length

  • Reduces on-site materials holding

  • Optimised the use of your technical team.

is repaid in many other areas. 

Optimise YOUR costs by partnering with the best. Read more here

 Optimising Costs


About this author
Dave Tilmouth

Head of Marketing Communications

I'm Head of Marketing Communications for Unipart Rail, so I get to be involved in lots of exciting stuff across Traction & Rolling Stock, Infrastructure and road traffic. My colleagues know me as someone who has a perspective on everything, as well as being a bit of an extrovert!


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