They're coming

Feb. 25, 2004

The big bosses are going to be taking an interest in your work like you've never seen before.

In just the past few weeks, I've seen software introductions by ABB and OSIsoft touting a new, highly functional level of integration with a CMMS. Operations and automation system information can be analyzed, diagnosed and used to generate maintenance work orders, which are tracked through completion. Managers can see production problems, resolutions and costs clearly and concisely in real time.

In April, we'll present the results of our biennial CMMS/EAM Software Review, comparing in detail the functionalities, features and costs of 15-20 current packages. For the first time, SAP and Oracle plan to participate, putting some major ERP vendor offerings head-to-head with many of the most revered best-of-breed maintenance management systems.

And at its recent Performance-Driven Manufacturing Forum in Orlando, Fla., ARC Advisory Group increased its focus on trends in plant asset management (PAM). Over the years, the market analyst firm has directed high-level managers' attention in turn on ERP, supply chain, automation, and now, operations and asset management as areas critical to gaining competitive advantage.

Wil Chin, ARC research director, told those high-level managers preventive maintenance costs five times (and corrective maintenance 10 times) as much as predictive maintenance, and asserted that "half of all planned maintenance is unnecessary." He described for them how PAM solutions provide advance warning when performance falters, optimize maintenance activities, manage all phases of the asset lifecycle and more.

We know that, as a group, you're still dealing with a lot of breakdowns. Even the most advanced plants remain mired in reactive maintenance. What are you going to do when corporate seers darken your door, this time not to tell you to cut costs, but to talk with you about where and how to invest in maintenance to make your plant more profitable? When they realize how much you can boost the bottom line, you'd better have a plan.

How can we help? Do you need more technical information on predictive technologies? How they can be applied to specific equipment? In particular industries?

Do you need to read about real-world examples? Want help with costing and justification? Instructions on how to talk and work with information technology and accounting folks? A strategy for cultural change in your organization?

We're on your side. We want to use this shift in management focus to build maintenance and engineering's role in manufacturing's success, and to help you get the respect (and resources) you deserve.

Just tell us what you need.

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