One of the most difficult obstacles to overcome when implementing an EAM/CMMS is motivating the maintainers, their supervisors and even the line operators to use the system to its fullest. This means entering shop floor data completely, accurately and on a timely basis. It also means making clever use of the data in terms of reporting and analysis so that equipment downtime is minimized and productivity maximized.Ask most users on the shop floor what they like least about their EAM/CMMS and chances are they will focus on the difficulties in entering data into and retrieving data out of the system. Asset Centric Technologies Inc.’s CMMS EZ Entry allows users to easily enter and inquire about work requests and work orders.Using Microsoft .NET technology and Active Server Pages, EZ Entry provides a Web-based extension to, not a substitution for, an existing CMMS. End users say it is simple to learn and use, so shop-floor users have no problem incorporating it into their daily routines.“Implementation took about two days for installation, user configuration and training,” says Craig Moneypenny, maintenance assistant supervisor for the ABS Plant of Advics Manufacturing Ohio Inc. “Average training time was approximately 15 minutes per person. It took about one month to get everyone fully using EZ Entry for all unplanned work orders for our two Ohio plants.”The business case was built on less technician time spent on paperwork, elimination of administrative time to enter work orders into the EAM/CMMS, and having immediate access to work history. Although PDAs and cell phones were considered, the additional expenditure on hardware could not be cost-justified. “Our annual maintenance savings for emergency and unplanned work alone is more than $31,000,” Moneypenny says. “This is expected to increase once EZ Entry is implemented for planned and PM work orders.”At American Showa Inc., Kelly Waldren, TPM/PM coordinator, prepared the business case for his facility in Sunbury, Ohio. A payback period of a little more than two months was estimated based on reduced time spent writing and processing work requests by 83%, a savings of about 25 minutes per occurrence.
Implementation took as little as two days because installation and training went quicker than expected.“It now takes us about half the time, down from six to three minutes, to make up a work order and update each of the approximately 1,000 emergency and PM work orders processed per month,” Waldren says. There were also benefits observed after implementation that were not anticipated in the business case. “Because the software is so user-friendly, that is, employing a basic point-and-click and fill-in-the-blanks approach, ownership is high and the quality of data entered has improved. As well, we get about 20% more work requests from the originators since it is so easy.”Shaw Industries Inc. is one of the world’s largest flooring manufacturers with about 30,000 employees spread across 45 manufacturing facilities. In the spring of 2003, Charles Chapman was moving into his role as TPM manager for one of the manufacturing divisions, and immediately saw the need to have a common work order system across all facilities. “For TPM to be successful, we had to get the tools in everyone’s hands, from hourly production operators to maintenance personnel, and to supervisors and managers,” Chapman explains. “Our first thought was to look at upgrading to a newer version of our CMMS/EAM, but upon review from a cost standpoint, saw it as unrealistic.”The company went live with EZ Entry in November 2003 in three pilot plants, worked through procedural issues, then rolled out to 38 sister plants. “Implementation took about two months,” says Buford Fox, Shaw’s manager of corporate systems. “We thought it would take longer, but installation and training was quicker than expected, and the system was readily accepted by everyone.” He adds, “This system has far exceeded the expectation levels of all involved, from the machine operator to the plant manager.”For more information, call (864) 201-5059 or visit www.assetcentric.com.David Berger, P.Eng., is contributing editor for Plant Services magazine.