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Our work

At Broadleaf we help our clients deal with uncertainty and complexity, from simple risk assessments and decision support to complicated analysis of options and challenging decisions. We can assist at all levels, from individual projects and isolated requirements through to organisational risk management frameworks and strategic capabilities.

Case studies

  • Climate change strategy for a pharmaceutical company

    This case study describes a review of climate-related risks with an international pharmaceutical company that had sophisticated frameworks for governance, risk management and corporate social responsibility (CSG). It outlines how the approach was adjusted to take account of the focus on medium- and long-term effects of climate change and climate policy, the sophistication of the client team, previous risk assessments, and the need to generate an understanding of climate-related uncertainties to support strategic decisions.

  • Reliable power for a remote mine

    Broadleaf was engaged to facilitate a workshop to examine the risks related to the reliability of power supply to a mine. The mine generated its own power that supplied its facility as well as surrounding communities. A planned mine expansion meant that the power supply to the plant needed to be upgraded and its reliability improved. This case discusses the importance of tailoring the criteria for risk assessment, using several forms of analysis to set priorities, and the need for a broad perspective.

  • Bridge operations on a commuter road

    This case study outlines a risk assessment and treatment options for enhancing the reliability of an opening bridge on a commuter road, augmented by aspects of failure modes and effects analysis (FMEA). The case discusses the importance of site familiarisation, setting workshop agendas carefully, adapting the risk management process to enhance its effectiveness, using a flexible approach to setting priorities for management attention, and the value of templates for efficiency, effectiveness and due diligence.

  • Options for a pharmaceutical dispensary

    This case outlines how a structured process was used to evaluate options for a pharmaceutical dispensary, where the raw material for prescription and other medications are prepared for manufacturing. The focus on company objectives and criteria helped to achieve consensus among internal stakeholders with slightly different requirements and priorities.

  • Land use near a major hazard facility

    When a proposal to build an aged care facility was received by a local council, a nearby major hazard facility lodged an objection to it. The council asked Broadleaf to investigate whether or not the objection was justified, and to be an expert witness in a formal public hearing. Our expertise in land use safety planning and regulatory requirements was useful in this process. In particular, we were able to guide the council to ask the right questions of the owner of the refinery to achieve a satisfactory planning outcome.

  • Cost uncertainty in a cable-laying contract

    This case study describes a quantitative risk analysis undertaken with a construction company that was preparing a bid to design and construct fibre optic broadband infrastructure in a regional area. The purpose was to understand the uncertainty in the initial cost estimate for the activity, and to contribute to the company’s decisions about whether to bid and at what price. The case demonstrates the role of quantitative analysis of uncertainty as part of a contractor’s bid development process.

  • Strategic program to expand a portfolio of health products

    This case describes how an international pharmaceutical company used risk management to examine a significant long-term strategic agreement with another organisation in a complementary medical sector, for the purpose of developing improvement actions to enhance its success. The case discusses how the process was planned and conducted, and how the company’s enterprise risk management processes were tailored for the specific strategic and implementation decisions that were involved. It also discusses how the company made sense of the large amount of information generated in a series of risk-related workshops, to develop a practical and manageable set of improvement plans.

  • Breaking decision paralysis

    A client wished to increase the ventilation capacity of an underground mine to allow the working area to be expanded. A prefeasibility study had become bogged down with disagreements about major design criteria and trade-offs. Broadleaf was engaged to facilitate a quantitative risk assessment of the initial plans. The process exposed the important decisions that had to be settled before a firm plan could be developed. This helped to break the deadlock so the study could proceed.

  • Pre-bid risks for a large construction contract

    This case shows how qualitative and quantitative assessments of uncertainty were used when preparing a response to a large, complex request for tender. The aim was to assist the bidders to understand the risks they would face and the implications for their businesses if their tender were accepted, and to develop a realistic view of the budget and contingency they would need. This helped them to develop a negotiating strategy, and to set an appropriate bid price.

  • Fire safety for a gas drainage plant

    This case describes an investigation into the fire safety requirements of a plant processing methane-rich waste gas from nearby mines. It demonstrates the value of tailoring the fire safety advice for the circumstances. In this case, instead of a detailed quantitative assessment of all possible fire scenarios, a comprehensive qualitative review of the fire scenarios and the general principles for their management was undertaken.

  • Replacing a high-voltage power line

    This case study examines a quantitative risk analysis of the capital costs of a high-voltage power enhancement project. It illustrates the value of integrating quantitative analysis into project workflows, and how the outcomes from the analysis can assist in allocating contingencies to cost items for project cost control. It also demonstrates that the assumptions about the shapes of the distributions used in quantitative analyses may not always be important in terms of their impacts on the outcomes from the analysis.

  • Identifying and addressing fraud in procurement

    This case study outlines risk management activities associated with potential fraud and corruption in the procurement function of a public-sector entity. The aim was to identify and determine the priority of risks associated with fraud and corruption, and to ensure that appropriate controls were in place or identified for future treatment. While this case is set in the context of a government agency, most of the lessons are relevant to any organisation.

  • Upgrading control systems in an oilfield

    This case describes a risk assessment associated with a technical program to upgrade equipment and control systems across a major oilfield. It demonstrates the relationships between program, project and headline risks, and the value of generic key elements for structuring risk management activities. It also notes that a program risk assessment may help to identify and focus attention on improvements to broader aspects of organizational performance, far beyond the program that initiated the discussion.

  • Options for mine ventilation

    This case describes a fast, high-level review of mine ventilation options. It used Kepner Tregoe analysis to focus on the ability of the options to achieve project goals, providing clarity and a sound rationale for management decisions. If straightforward approaches are sufficient, then there is no need to over-complicate the process or invest effort in greater detail.

  • Gas-fired power station cost and schedule uncertainty

    This case study outlines an analysis of the contingency associated with building a new gas-fired power station that was well into the delivery phase. The analysis drew attention to areas where additional effort was needed to ensure longer-term success. The case demonstrates the importance of addressing schedule uncertainty when estimating the capital costs of a project.

  • Spatial modelling of pandemic influenza

    This case outlines the development of a powerful and flexible simulation environment for modelling epidemic and pandemic influenza, aimed at helping policy makers explore a range of scenarios and interventions for the control of an outbreak. It allows public health epidemiologists and disease managers to study the spread of disease in an urban population, evaluate ways of limiting virus transmission, and examine strategies for avoiding an exponential explosion in cases that would overwhelm public health resources.

  • Coronavirus protection strategy for a university college

    It is particularly difficult to protect students at a university from a pandemic disease, and especially those who live within colleges and halls or residence. This case describes work we conducted for the management team of a university residential college in March 2020. It describes how a simple yet rapid vulnerability analysis helped them to develop a comprehensive protection strategy when confronted by an evolving coronavirus threat.

  • Providing water for a mine

    A preliminary hazard and operability (HAZOP) study of a mine expansion project identified potentially major risks associated with a large water pipeline near a village. A simple scenario-based risk assessment, conducted quickly by a small team, generated a range of improvement options for pipeline design and construction. Simple approaches can generate excellent results when used appropriately. It is important not to short-cut the risk management process by eliminating any of the steps, but the steps themselves can be tailored according to the project’s scope and need.

  • Climate change in a rural shire

    This case study outlines a risk assessment that examined the effects of climate change on a rural shire in Australia. It demonstrates the use of climate scenarios, and risk assessment over short-term, medium-term and long-term time horizons. It uses an extended risk analysis template as a continuing record of important supporting information for justifying treatment responses, some of which may relate to risks with impacts only in the far distant future but that require action in the short term to avert problems or to build resilience.

  • Upgrading refineries for clean fuels

    This case illustrates the value of qualitative and quantitative risk analyses in refinery upgrades that had to be completed within the strict time constraints imposed by tight shutdown windows. Schedule impacts drove the qualitative assessment, and a quantitative analysis of uncertainty associated with the schedule was completed. Several forms of sensitivity analysis were used to highlight where additional project effort might be worthwhile.

  • Tailoring risk assessment for a port expansion project

    This case describes a simple project risk assessment undertaken to initiate formal risk management on a large expansion program for a port that handled bulk commodities for export. It demonstrates the value of tailoring the risk assessment for the circumstances. In this case, a modified pre-mortem process was used for risk identification, and the corporate scales for operational risk analysis were adjusted to better suit the project.

  • Review of shift resourcing

    This case concerns the effects of reducing the number of personnel allocated to each shift at three industrial plants. The reduction was proposed in response to cost savings imposed on the wider business by the need to remain competitive. Detailed preparation and close stakeholder involvement were important factors in developing useful outcomes.

  • Concept-stage assessment of new technology in locomotives

    We conducted a risk assessment of new technology intended for fuel management in locomotives. The assessment was held at an early stage of the design, ensuring stakeholders’ concerns were captured and acceptance for the technology was gained before the company made a major investment in production.

  • Supporting option choice and project approval decisions

    This case study describes risk assessment activities to support a large capital project, first to assist in selecting a technology option and later as an input to the Board’s decision on granting formal project sanction and Notice to Proceed. It demonstrates the value of comparative risk assessment, a staged approach to setting priorities for addressing uncertainty, and the role of risk management in supporting project decisions.

  • Quantitative risk-based comparison of options

    This case study describes a range analysis of the cost of two options for the acquisition and implementation of an asset management and maintenance system for a utility business, under an agile delivery approach. It demonstrates a straightforward quantitative approach to comparing options that generated far more insight than could be obtained from a simple comparison of the initial quotes from software vendors.

  • Due diligence for a strategic acquisition

    This case describes Broadleaf’s assistance to an international oil company in assessing the opportunities and threats associated with the acquisition of a significant stake in a business in a developing country. The purpose was to contribute to the company’s due diligence, submissions and approvals process. There was a specific objective of generating input for an imminent meeting of the Executive Committee.

  • Extending an airport runway

    We conducted a risk assessment for an extension to the runway of an international airport. Features of the assessment were the involvement of key stakeholders in the process, including important funding agencies, and sufficient time for probing discussions. With the help of effective facilitation, this gave the stakeholders confidence that nothing important had been overlooked.

  • Software integration for ship chartering

    This case describes a business risk analysis and planning exercise for a ship chartering company (CharterCo) and its in-house IT team to consider the Cargo Plus Project. It describes a relatively simple process that clarified everyone’s understanding of the project and its objectives, identified key risks, and helped the project team set priorities for the next phases of the work.