Characterisation of uncertainties in costing for availability contracts

There is an emerging trend of offering combined products and services to customers as integrated solutions. These are implemented by contracts such as availability contracts. Uncertainties may arise due to the novelty of the process of designing and managing such offerings, prediction of equipment failure and multiple stakeholders involvement in addition to the long-term nature of the contract. Understanding through-life uncertainties and their impact on cost is critical to ensure sustainability and profitability of the companies offering such solutions. The focus of this paper is to (i) evaluate existing uncertainty classifications and (ii) propose essential considerations for characterising the uncertainties in availability contracts. Appropriate classification of uncertainties should improve the quality of cost estimation by stimulating an understanding and awareness of uncertainties and their characteristics.