Adrian Zaccaria

    Staying at the head of the crowd in the fiercely competitive world of international energy projects is a fairly simple matter, according to the president of Bechtel Corporation's power unit. The key, says Adrian Zaccaria, is giving customers the best value for their money.

    With that straightforward strategy in mind, Bechtel Power is undergoing a reengineering process that is producing a more responsive and effective company, and one that will win more and more contracts around the world, Zaccaria said in a World Cogeneration interview in Vol. 7 #1.

    For a man whose job requires him to travel about 80 percent of the time, Zaccaria can assume a notably relaxed attitude as he explains how his company is responding to the sea change that is sweeping the energy field, both domestically and internationally.

    In what might be described as a pit stop at his Gaithersburg, MD. power headquarters, Zaccaria said he is fortunate to have worked in all aspects of the business. In his nearly 25 years with Bechtel, Zaccaria has done engineering, project controls, worked in the field and been manager of several major projects.

    He took over responsibility for Bechtel Power in 1989, when "we weren't even on the screen" in terms of fossil projects worldwide, but "basically the last few years we've been No. I," he said. "Because we focus on full scope EPC projects, we estimate our work off revenues to be thirty percent greater than our closest competitor, and ten times greater than the next closest."

    The company is going through reengineering at every level, Zaccaria said. That involves "the clean sheet of paper approach as to how we're doing our work and the processes that we employ and the interface with our customers, with the vendors, and even within our own organization and how we can streamline that whole process."

    The effort "is starting to show results already," and the end result over three years is expected lo be a 30 percent reduction in the total installed costs for customers, he said.

    "We are about halfway there overall, but we are encouraged that we are going to be able to achieve that. Obviously our intention is to do it to become more competitive and to win a greater volume of work."

    "What we're doing is coming up with further consolidations of management levels and becoming a flatter organization, a more responsive organization. We'll have fewer management levels and more worker levels within the organization and a better communication" between the two. "We want to be the employer of choice and the contractor of choice simultaneously because we think they feed off one another," Zaccaria said.

    The objective of the company is not to be the biggest. It's to be the best in everything we do and provide the most value to our customers."

    In January of 1996, Mr. Zaccaria was named President and Chief Operating Officer of Bechtel Group, Inc. Early in his tenure, Bechtel implemented what Zaccaria calls "Regionalization". This policy arranged management of the company into four geographical regions and a fifth contractual region to handle US Government contracts. Global industry units were also named to manage the Bechtel resources of specific industries such as fossil power generation. This process has allowed Bechtel to maintain leadership in Fossil Power and Nuclear Power while providing local presence for its customers. As business opportunities have changed and evolved since 1995, such as widespread privatization and emergence of merchant power, this structure "has ensured Bechtel can service its clients from both a technical and geographical perspective," concluded Zaccaria.