i3net Feature Member – Five Y’s

Five Y’s is an Illawarra based engineeering consulting company that provides project management and product development services for the manufacturing and other heavy industries.

Five Ys has specialised in the delivery of projects up to $10 million.  Principal Consultant, Dr Sander Kroes, explains that SME’s will often want to deliver these smaller projects internally but need project engineering and management assistance to fill a void in their in-house project team.

As a member of the i3net for 10 years, Five Ys has had the opportunity to collaborate with many of the i3net membership.  Project managing the relocation of Vesuvius’ refractory manufacturing facility to Port Kembla allowed Five Ys to engage the services of i3net members to deliver a significant portion of the project scope.  In total, nearly $2 million of the relocation works was delivered by nine of the i3net membership.

Dr Kroes stresses that the success of the Vesuvius project was not a matter of relying on the relationships to deliver the project.  All contracts were competitive and administered in a manner to protect the interests of the client.  The strong relationships forged with the participating i3net members did, however, ensure risks were well managed, emergent issues were resolved early, and all parties cooperated with a best-for-project mind set.

The Vesuvius project was deemed a success by all parties with the new manufacturing facility opened by Lord Mayor Bradbery and Vesuvius Management in 2013 under budget, with minimal impact to production and no lost time injuries.

Dr Kroes explains that Five Ys is well positioned to assist other companies who need the services of a local project manager to engage the vast expertise and capabilities of the Illawarra engineering and manufacturing sector.

Since 2012 Dr Sander Kroes has also been invited to provide lectures on Project Management and Innovation and Design for Masters of Engineering students at the University of Wollongong.  To the great satisfaction of his students, Dr Kroes incorporated a practitioner’s perspective to his lectures.

In teaching at the university Dr Kroes found a gap in the literature on the role of practical inventive processes within innovation.  He has since developed a scaffolded approach to the divergent and convergent processes of being inventive.  Dr Kroes said that following a scaffolded inventive process provides a robust link between the typical design processes and a successful innovation.  Five Ys is planning to offer training workshops on his scaffolded approach in the near future.