KBR (Kellogg, Brown and Root) is a Texas-based global corporation. It employs over 57,000 people worldwide and is a leading engineering, construction and services company. It supports the energy, hydrocarbon, government services and civil infrastructure sectors. KBR’s business is based on project management activities. This means it works with clients, providing a wide range of specialist expertise and experience. Examples of projects that KBR supports include: • providing solutions for converting crude oil into transport fuel • designing airports, recreational facilities and educational establishments • creating on-shore and off-shore oil and gas production facilities • helping countries pursue options for renewable energy • creating facilities for major events such as the Olympic Games or Formula One Grand Prix Racing • providing logistical support to the US and UK military. The KBR story began in 1901 when Morris W Kellogg opened a small pipe fabrication business in New York. This business grew to become a world-class engineering firm, M.W. Kellogg. Its engineering expertise and subsequent technologies became the foundation for petroleum refining and petrochemical processing facilities. The services provided by KBR are valuable in supporting the energy and petrochemicals industries across the world. A further milestone in the development of KBR occurred in 1919 when brothers George and Hermann Brown partnered with their brother-in-law Dan Root to start a construction firm called Brown and Root. This company was contracted by the US government to build the Corpus Christi Naval station during World War II. Shortly after the war the company built the world’s first offshore oil platform. Further expansion followed and Brown and Root grew to become a major road construction company and general contractor. Following a number of acquisitions and divestments KBR became a stand-alone company in April 2007. The company is organised into six business units. This means there are numerous job roles in areas such as engineering, construction, operations, logistics and project management. This case study shows how these different roles can be organised within the structure of KBR to enable it to achieve its mission, which is ‘to safely deliver any project, any time, in any environment for the benefit of our customers, shareholders, employees and the communities we serve’. The core values of the business are a central part of the culture throughout KBR. These include an uncompromising commitment to health & safety and open and honest relationships between employees that are based on mutual respect. The company’s values focus on transparency, accountability, financial responsibility and discipline. Conducting business with the utmost integrity and ethics is the foundation of KBR’s day-to-day business. CURRICULUM TOPICS • Organisational structure • Hierarchy, flat and matrix structures • Roles • Responsibility and authority
GLOSSARY Acquisitions: where one business takes over another e.g. by purchasing a majority of shares. Divestments: the process of selling off parts of a company. Logistics: the orderly movement and storage of goods throughout the supply chain e.g. from raw materials to finished goods. Values: what a company stands for. Culture: the typical pattern of doing things in an organisation. Ethics: moral principles or rules of conduct and behaviour accepted by members of society.
Organisational structure refers to the way that jobs, responsibilities and power are organised within a business. The organisational structure of KBR reflects the market opportunities the business is seeking to maximise all over the world. By dividing up the organisation, each business unit can specialise in its own area of expertise, bringing efficiency benefits.
GLOSSARY Joint venture: a partnership between companies to enable them to deliver a...