Best Practices for Commissioning and Startup (Best Practice)

RT-312 Topic Summary
RT 312


Commissioning and startup (CSU) success is a key driver of overall capital project success. RT-312 identified 16 critical success factors (CSFs) that drive commissioning and startup success, and then characterized these factors with recommended timing of implementation and common barriers to their accomplishment. The team also identified how the 16 commissioning and startup CSFs are linked to the Planning for Startup work process model developed previously by RT-121. Finally, the team generated a user-friendly CSF implementation checklist to help project teams manage commissioning and startup efforts and identified five innovative commissioning technologies (ICTs) to leverage project team efforts for improved commissioning and startup success.

RT-312 defined commissioning and startup success in terms of eight component metrics:

  1. Project quality
  2. Product quantity (production rate)
  3. Startup schedule performance
  4. Startup safety performance
  5. Startup environmental performance
  6. Operations team performance
  7. Impact of startup on operations
  8. Level of startup required

The research products from RT-312 will help project teams to identify critical commissioning and startup activities, to assess levels of commissioning and startup/CSF implementation, and ultimately to enhance overall project performance.

Key Findings and Implementation Tools

1 : Critical Success Factors (CSF)

The research identified 16 CSFs for commissioning and startup focused at a high level on: (RS312-1)

  • Leadership
  • Team Alignment
  • Integration
  • Collaboration
  • Capability
  • Success criteria
  • Interface management
  • Recognition of value drivers
  • Planning
  • Funding for planning
  • CSU systems-focus
  • Support tools
  • Information