Using Your EAM to Drive Maintenance Improvement
An Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) solution can deliver maintenance improvements in many areas and help companies achieve savings of up to 20% of the total lifecycle costs according to Enterprise Asset Management EAM Excellence.
Most companies have an EAM return-on-investment (ROI) expectation that is developed as part of the project justification. Tools such as Accruent’s Maintenance Connection ROI Cost Savings Calculator are available to help companies understand the ROI potential of an EAM implementation.
The desired ROI benefits do not automatically result from installing an EAM. Companies must be prepared to use the EAM in ways that maximize its value. And while companies do not intentionally limit the value of their EAM, many do not take full advantage of system functionality or leverage the data available through their EAM to drive maintenance improvement.
What Are Three Areas Where Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) Value Not Commonly Recognized by Companies?
- Inventory optimization.
- Multi-site benchmarking and performance management.
- Asset lifecycle improvement.
When companies leverage EAM in these areas, they can increase their payback while driving overall maintenance improvements.
Having the necessary parts on hand when they are needed is critical to having an efficient maintenance process. While at first glance inventory management may seem straightforward, many factors add to its complexity. For example, the lead time to get a part, or the rate at which parts are used, affects the number that a company keeps in stock.
In many organizations, quickly locating parts can also be a challenge. Barcode scanning and inventory tracking capabilities within an EAM can make finding parts much easier and translate to faster repair times and higher labor efficiency.
An EAM can provide valuable insight into parts utilization and costing. It becomes easier to see actual spend on individual parts and improves part sourcing to reduce inventory costs. An EAM also offers capabilities like automated inventory control that streamlines the inventory process. Using features like min/max values and reorder points can help avoid stockouts that extend repairs and prolong downtime.
Finally, with an EAM, organizations have the option to manage inventory on an enterprise-wide basis. If two sites are physically close to one another and have similar equipment, there are potential opportunities to reduce inventory by sharing stock across sites.
Benchmarking and Performance Management
Enterprise Asset Management solutions are intended to be rolled out to multiple sites throughout the enterprise. Some companies do multi-site implementations, but then do not take advantage of the comprehensive data set within the EAM. One of the real values of an EAM is that it gives visibility to maintenance performance across the organization to enable benchmarking, best practice sharing and performance management.
Take, for example, two sites with similar equipment. If one site experiences a failure on an extruder every quarter while another location has a once-per-year failure rate on the same extruder, then the company has an opportunity to look at the higher performing site to see if there are conditions, maintenance procedures, etc. that can be replicated to reduce failures at the lower performing site
Benchmarks across the enterprise can also be established for downtime, maintenance costs and other key performance measurements. When organizations create and track these metrics, they begin to proactively manage maintenance performance. Over time, this typically drives maintenance improvements across the enterprise.
Asset Lifecycle Improvement
The centralized collection of asset and maintenance data provides valuable insight that can drive better maintenance decisions for improved asset performance.
As asset history is tracked with corresponding maintenance history, companies can analyze the data and use it to make improvements. EAM data analysis often helps identify trends that are used to shift to more proactive preventive and even predictive maintenance strategies. As preventive maintenance (PM) activities increase, assets tend to last longer, and, more often than not, reach their full life expectancy.
An additional aspect of lifecycle management to consider is asset documentation. It is essential that drawings, maintenance procedures and other asset-related information be directly linked to a piece of equipment, and easily accessible. It is also critical that documents be kept current. Accessible asset documentation through an EAM speeds the repair process and supports assets being safely and properly maintained.
Improve Your Maintenance With an EAM Solution
An EAM is a platform to drive maintenance improvements. Key areas like inventory optimization, benchmarking and performance management, and asset lifecycle improvement can deliver significant organizational benefits. Fully achieving the ROI potential requires organizations to have a plan for embracing all aspects of the benefits an EAM can deliver.