Office for Nuclear Regulation

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Readiness for Hinkley Point C Remobilisation

Executive summary

Purpose of intervention

The primary objectives of this cross-cutting intervention were to assess the implementation of NNB’s competency management arrangements in NNB’s Reactor Technology (RT) Team in advance of significant expansion of the Hinkley Point C (HPC) organisation, pending remobilisation, in order to judge:

This intervention forms part of a wider cross-cutting intervention looking at the adequacy of the implementation on NNB GenCo HPC’s competence management arrangements (TRIM 2015/311710).

Interventions Carried Out by ONR

ONR inspectors attended NNB’s Offices at Barnwood to conduct an intervention on implementation of competency management within NNB’s RT organisation. The intervention included review of:

Key Findings, Inspector's Opinions and Reasons for Judgements Made

ONR’s cross cutting intervention of NNB’s Competency Management arrangements resulted in the following:

ONR notes that the resources deployed within the RT Team of NNB are recruited against a set of adequate criteria in order to effectively discharge their roles.

NNB provided an updated organisational chart (2016/68220) that highlighted the Severe Accident post is identified in the “nuclear baseline” and that this post has now been filled. Two new posts have been identified (currently vacant) in preparation for the planned remobilisation for HPC.

NNB has, prior to this cross cutting intervention, carried out a self audit / review of competence management across the Design Authority (DA) which has highlighted a number of shortfalls and recommendations, which were presented (2016/69929) at this intervention. The audit showed that approximately 80% of DA staff are deemed to be either unconditionally or conditionally competent for their roles.

ONR welcomed the proactive nature of the self-audit and the proposed action plan to implement the findings. The proposed action plans (2016/72636 and 2016/72638) have influenced the outcome of the IIS rating for this intervention.

Each post within the DA organisation is assigned roles, which should be reviewed within a defined period. ONR welcomes a recently initiated activity by NNB to review and further develop its competence requirements, although it is noted that some role profiles are outside their review period.

ONR judges that NNB should consider reviewing its processes, tools, monitoring and implementation of the role profiles as part of its development in this area.

ONR reviewed a number of completed competency assessments. This indicated no major shortfalls in competence but did identify a number of inconsistencies between the required competency levels and how this was interpreted and implemented across the Reactor Technology Team.

ONR judges that an independent technical review or benchmarking of the competency requirements across different roles (at DA level as well as within the RT team) could enhance consistency of the required competency levels and subsequent assessment against the identified criterion within the team.

ONR notes that the RD’s codes and methods acceptance and review activities are not specifically captured in an appropriate role profile, requiring further development by NNB.

This record includes the following observations for NNB GenCo’s further consideration.

Observations

Recommendations

ONR should seek to improve its visibility of how NNB’s competence requirements and the Intelligent Customer Practitioner roles are developed, managed and recorded.

ONR should consider reviewing the developments and implementation of NNB’s “learning portal” when updated.

ONR should, on completion of its overall cross cutting initiative, consider a follow up review of the NNB procedures to examine whether the observations raised as part of this intervention are implemented.