Collaborative enterprise development partnerships bear fruit

WorleyParsons’ Enterprise Supplier Development (ESD) programme has achieved significant success within its first six years of operation, highlighting the benefits of sustainable and collaborative enterprise development partnerships. Through the programme WorleyParsons has been able to streamline its operations with a ready availability of capable specialist suppliers, while its ESD partners have expanded their capabilities and foothold in the market place.

Six years ago WorleyParsons launched its comprehensive business assistance programme that would simultaneously benefit entrepreneurs and stimulate growth in the national economy. The objective was to source emerging business partners for WorleyParsons and form collaborative and symbiotic working relationships that could transfer valuable resources to ESD partners.

Today the ESD programme provides mentoring, support, skills and knowledge transfer, multinational brand leverage and partnership for 13 dynamic local businesses throughout the region.

Gladwin Mfolo, Senior Project Manager at WorleyParsons, elaborates on the ESD programme’s growth trajectory, and some recent success stories.

“The ESD programme is starting to bear fruit as we find more opportunities to make a sustainable difference and grow with our development partners,” enthuses Mfolo, adding that the programme’s progress has aligned well with its original objectives.

As the programme matures, WorleyParsons expects to see more and more joint delivery of services while exposing their partner SMEs to world-class delivery systems and transferring skills and capabilities in the hydrocarbons, power, infrastructure, minerals, metals and chemical sectors.

Mfolo says that while WorleyParsons provides their ESD partners with on-site support such as transportation, accommodation and access to site, the companies work independently on projects, much like any other sub-contractor managed by WorleyParsons.

Mfolo notes NBi Quantity Surveyors, an extended partner within the ESD programme, as one of its most recent success stories. The black-owned cost engineering consultancy firm is providing quantity surveying services to the De Beers Venetia Underground Project for which WorleyParsons is providing engineering, procurement and construction management (EPCM) services. NBi Quantity Surveyors is currently six months into their three-year contract for the project and Mfolo says that as they progress their scope of work will no doubt expand.

“This partnership is a great example of how we envisaged the ESD programme to work, as WorleyParsons can source specialist capabilities within its ESD partnerships, and our partners can be exposed to larger markets and more opportunities,” says Mfolo.

NBi Quantity Surveyors has over 12 years’ experience in providing all aspects of quantity surveying services to the built environment, mining, rail, and engineering sectors, with a specific focus on the mining environment, and has already completed projects for a wide range of clients.

ST Nubian Architects, a Level Two B-BBEE architectural and project management firm, is another example of a success story within the ESD programme. Mfolo says that when ST Nubian Architects, an extended ESD partner, was approached to submit a tender to transform a basement parking lot at the University of Johannesburg into a simulated underground mining environment, they turned to WorleyParsons for practical mining expertise.

“ST Nubian Architects was awarded the contract as their tender was the only one to include input from a mining engineer. This is a good example of how our ESD programme assists partner companies to tap into a new market in an efficient and collaborative way,” says Mfolo.

Established in 2006, ST Nubian Architects has successfully delivered projects covering a wide range of disciplines and is committed to transformation and skills development, as well as running a successful graduate training programme. Backed by Uruguay-based ST Architects, the company has been exposed to projects all over the world, including the United States and Spain.

Mfolo says that the inclusion of MMRisk as a core partner is a further recent highlight of the ESD programme. This 100% black South African-owned process safety and risk consultancy specialises in the provision of process safety and risk management services. The company was invited to join the ESD programme as WorleyParsons recognised the benefits of having on-hand risk resources while simultaneously exposing MMRisk to a wide range of clients.

WorleyParsons’ ESD programme is crucial to the company’s corporate and social responsibility agenda, which calls for active participation in addressing socio-economic challenges in South Africa as well as transformation in the engineering sector. It is divided into three levels:

  1. ED Core Partners – companies that seek the assistance of an enterprise incubator programme, as well as the growth potential through partnership with WorleyParsons.
  2. ESD Extended Partners – companies that are established in their own right and seek to partner with WorleyParsons to execute major projects.
  3. ESD Alumni Partners – companies that have graduated from the WorleyParsons ED Programme and continue to work closely with WorleyParsons to tender for work and execute projects.

“The ESD programme is making a sustainable difference by creating opportunities for our ESD partners and allowing them to grow. This all falls in line with our original objectives, and WorleyParsons will continue to expand on this programme,” concludes Mfolo.

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