Irrespective of the industry or sector they are part of, every company today uses a large number of devices that are either for common use or allocated to specific employees. These devices need to be seamlessly connected to each other and to the company’s network with the use of different software, applications, services, and systems to ensure the best output from the setup. The organization also needs to keep track of the location and usage of these devices in real-time so that the inventory can be maintained. The sum total of all these is collectively referred to as enterprise asset management (EAM). In this blog, we will talk about the benefits offered by EAM and then look at some use cases from actual organizations that exemplify the efficiency that EAM brings.
Benefits of Enterprise Asset Management
EAM can be broadly said to contribute to operational excellence. But let us also take a deeper look at how organizations can benefit from Enterprise Asset Management.
- Every data point regarding the different devices in use is available centrally, for monitoring and for checking the status. This does away with the need for someone to physically check the details of all devices, providing the benefits of virtual collaboration.
- The EAM system can keep track of the maintenance schedule of all the devices covered, which includes software updates, insurance premiums, and also scheduled hardware updates. This prevents manual errors due to which certain schedules could be missed out.
- Since all devices are ‘visible’ to a central monitoring team virtually, they can keep tabs on the health of all devices, and take proactive action when a problem seems imminent.
- The downtime, as well as the utilization for every device, can be seen in real-time as well as over the historical performance of the device. This helps the organization create workflows that can allocate idle resources where needed, making the operations more efficient.
- A program to run enterprise-wide management of assets can be used across multiple work and client locations, and can also be scaled up easily when the scope of work increases. This prevents the need for a fresh installation of the management system when additional work nodes get added.
- For some companies, the work done by their devices can impact customers or vendors too. The use of EAM to maintain efficient operations would help in providing faster resolutions to such stakeholders.
How does enterprise asset management help improve efficiency?
There are several ways by which the implementation can make the operations of an organization more efficient:
- The organization can use EAM to get proactive updates about those devices due for scheduled maintenance. This helps prevent sudden breakdowns which can cost a lot of time and money, and also result in a work backlog.
- The automated monitoring of asset health and functions does away with the need for paperwork and keeping a physical inventory. The dashboard for all the devices can be accessed online from multiple locations, and aid in faster decision-making.
- The reporting for executive management can be created and viewed through the EAM, which helps the organization save on travel and meeting time. The concerned teams and their managers can utilize this time on more productive tasks.
The benefits mentioned above are usually applicable to all industries. But the impact of EAM is undoubtedly greater in certain scenarios. Let us look at a few use cases for specific industry types.
- The best use cases of EAM are in industries where the assets are costly and involve heavy engineering, whose downtime can prove to be a crippling blow to operations.
- EAM can be invaluable in that devices or assets are arranged in a linear fashion, which means that a breakdown in one of them can impact the inputs for the subsequent ones, thus putting a stop to operations.
- There are some sectors where compliance and safety are very important, and a missed audit requirement can cause the operations to be stopped. EAM provides centralized control in those organizations which can help prevent audit lapses.
- As explained above, large organizations with an array of a large number of devices spread around multiple locations can function much better with a centralized enterprise asset management program with appropriate standardization.
- Similarly, organizations that use devices with a large number of spare parts can benefit immensely by having EAM handle the warranty and maintenance cycles.
- Organizations that adhere to standard process management philosophies like Six Sigma would find them easier to implement with the help of good EAM software.
Today we are well and truly into the era of IoT (Internet of Things), where we use systems to remotely control a wide variety of moving parts and devices. This can be done much more efficiently by implementing a robust enterprise asset management system, which can aid in improving the productivity and efficiency of such operations.