Front End Loading

Front End Loading

Front-End Loading (FEL) is the process for conceptual development of processing industry projects. Example of processing industry are petrochemical, refining, pharmaceutical. Front-End Loading is also referred to as Pre-Project Planning (PPP) or Front-End Engineering Design (FEED).

Expanding on the above definition, Front-End Loading refers to including robust planning and design early in a project's lifecycle (i.e., the "Front End" of a project), at a time when the ability to influence changes in design is relatively high and the cost to make those changes is relatively low. It typically applies to industries with highly capital intensive, long lifecycle projects (i.e., hundreds of millions or billions of dollars over several years before any revenue is produced). Though it often adds a small amount of time and cost to the early portion of a project, these costs are minor compared to the alternative of the costs and effort required to make changes at a later stage in the project.

It also typically uses a Stage-Gate process, whereby a project must pass through formal Gates at well defined milestones within the project's lifecycle before receiving funding to proceed to the next Stage of work.

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