Enterprise asset management (EAM) software is one of the most important tools for growth-oriented enterprises. In fact, the global EAM software market is expected to grow from $5.1 billion in 2019 to $8.2 billion by 2024—a compound annual growth rate of 10%.
Why is EAM so critical for profitability?
If you’re operating in manufacturing, construction, transportation or any other asset-intensive industry, your asset performance is directly related to your bottom line. Given the tremendous amount of capital you pour into critical resources, the only way to reliably boost profits is to squeeze the greatest amount of productivity out of those resources, all the while minimizing lifetime cost of ownership.
At a bare minimum, that means dropping the old run-to-failure maintenance model. To truly improve asset performance, you need a refined preventive maintenance strategy, not to mention the right technology to back it up.
EAM software is powerful
A true EAM solution is about more than just maintenance, however. The reason why EAM software is such a powerful profit-booster is that it aligns with all the business functions that are related to physical assets: pricing, investment decisions, capital planning and much more. Essentially, an EAM solution can improve business efficacy in way that leads to better margins.
Few enterprises can leave asset performance to chance or guesswork. There is simply too much investment at stake.
Informed decision-making requires data centralization, integration and analytics—all the benefits of an EAM solution. If you’re on the fence about implementation, consider a few of the most important reasons why an EAM software solution should be on your short list of smart investments.
8 Reasons why EAM is your smartest investment
1. EAM optimizes your maintenance strategy
EAM software isn’t only about maintenance, but improving your maintenance procedures is certainly one way it can help boost profits. Preventive maintenance (PM), in particular, becomes far more effective (and nuanced) for a large organization when all variables are tracked by a single, centralized system and then optimized for cost-savings.
How exactly does this work in the enterprise setting?
Preventive maintenance programs tend to rely on triggers—the time-, use- or condition-based events that spur maintenance personnel into preemptive action before a failure occurs. Vehicles may be scheduled for routine maintenance based on mileage, for instance, while heavy machinery might undergo repairs after a given number of production cycles.
But triggers vary tremendously between equipment types and subtypes, and only in certain cases is sidelining an asset worth the cost. In fact, some assets won’t produce a preventive maintenance return on investment (ROI) at all.
An EAM software allows you to sort out the details by relating maintenance schedules to the bottom-line metrics you really care about: uptime, downtime, total cost of ownership and productivity.
Instead of guessing at the dollars and cents, you’ll be able to answer specific questions, such as, “Did shutting down that production line for maintenance really produce a long-term ROI?” The answers to these types of questions are often surprising, counterintuitive and impossible to find without a fine-grained analytics system.
A powerful EAM platform will connect the maintenance tasks directly to the data and produce the quantified ROI measurement.
2. EAM leverages new technologies
A variety of related technologies is transforming the ways enterprises acquire, maintain, ship, and store assets. At the forefront of these advancements is the Internet of Things (IoT). IoT represents the interconnected web of physical products, sensors and digital tracking systems that can exchange information wirelessly. Overall, end-user spending on IoT solutions is expected to grow from $110 billion in 2017 to an incredible $1.6 trillion by 2025.
And IoT offers real profit-boosting potential because of its ability to reduce the time and resources spent on asset management. Sensor-equipped assets can easily be tracked and monitored at a distance, with less manual observation needed. IoT also offers opportunity to automate functions when collected data is used as a trigger.
Of course, IoT sensors and trackers require a management system of their own. That’s where EAM software comes into play.
An IoT-integrated EAM solution offers a bird’s-eye view of your asset inventory, including condition-related details such as pressure levels, corrosion and more. With this information at your fingertips in real-time, you can dramatically increase efficiencies and reduce the total cost of ownership for your most expensive assets.
3. Cloud-based EAM is secure
The modern enterprise is often global, spread out among locations, using a stack of technology platforms. It’s no surprise, then, that 94% of enterprises already use at least one cloud service, and that 83% of all enterprise workloads will be in the cloud by 2020.
Of course, security is still a priority, and any large organization needs to ensure that its data is both readily accessible and well-protected. A cloud-based EAM software solution can provide for both concerns.
Multilevel security built into a cloud-based EAM solution not only prevents third parties from accessing your sensitive information, but also allows you to limit access to your data on an individual basis. In the long run, this means less exposure to potential data breaches and less confusion resulting from the wrong people modifying the wrong records.
Such security saves money. It helps you avoid costly data recovery projects, regulatory fines related to exposure of personal data, and in a worst-case scenario, the high cost associated with being the victim of cybercrime.
4. Cloud-based EAM software with mobile features boosts productivity
Similarly, cloud-based EAM software can pave the way for mobile access to asset-related data. Mobile access increases productivity for maintenance crews, safety managers and other on-the-go personnel. With everything stored in the cloud, all your schedules, work orders, purchase orders and other specific data can be accessed just as easily from a smartphone as a workstation. No one has to spend time traveling to an office or other location to “turn in” paperwork or ask for the next assignment. The EAM covers it all. Ultimately, ease of access leads to saved time, lower costs and greater efficiency among maintenance personnel.
5. EAM underpins insightful capital planning
From the standpoint of maintenance managers, safety managers and others, EAM software makes it far easier to allocate labor and resources. Looking more broadly, EAM software likewise enables more precise capital allocation and leaner operations.
Customizable metrics and dashboards—combined with a central data repository—enable real-time data visualization and customized reporting. In turn, these capabilities allow for better decision-making each budget cycle.
Consider the agricultural industry, for example, where heavy machinery is a critical capital investment. Here, the right purchasing decisions could mean the difference between stagnation and growth. Every bit of insight helps.
The ability to view detailed cost and productivity information on a per-asset basis makes it possible for EAM users to make the right purchasing decisions months or years in advance, particularly when they have solid data on longevity and performance.
Data visualization can also help account for hard-to-predict variables. Think again of the agriculture industry, where weather conditions can significantly impact asset performance, yield and profit. Do last year’s lower yields indicate a need for new equipment, or did those yields result from a bad growing season? These detailed, critical questions become far easier to answer with the insights EAM software can provide.
6. EAM software can reduce excess maintenance inventory
The cost of parts and materials related to maintenance can add up quickly. That often leads asset managers to cut back on inventory orders when budgets are tight. A better solution is to leverage the inventory management functionality of EAM software to balance your inventory purchases.
With barcode scanning, your EAM can standardize inventory information so every part is accounted for and included in your total inventory. From there, you can review upcoming maintenance and plan proactively for exactly the inventory you need. This will help you allocate your budget appropriately and avoid excess spending on orders for parts and materials you don't actually need.
Do you know the value of absolutely everything you have tucked away in your maintenance inventory right now? An EAM platform can show you that total investment value in real-time.
7. EAM enhances employee productivity
Even if your equipment, vehicles or machines are the highest-dollar items on your books, human capital is still your most valuable resource. EAM software boosts profits by enhancing the productivity—the value—of each individual team member.
Consider your maintenance team, for example. Your maintenance managers contend with seemingly endless lists of work requests, work orders and all of the associated budgetary considerations.
By automating many of the repetitive tasks under the managers’ purview with an EAM software solution, they can significantly increase the number of tasks they accomplish per hour. That’s greater productivity. That’s greater value.
When automation is used, the personnel who report to the managers likewise become more effective because they receive the most important work orders faster and because the parts they need are more likely to be available when they need them.
Apply this same level of efficiency to safety, procurement, budget planning and other asset-intensive functions, and you’ll see a significant uptick in uptime. With workers performing near peak efficiency, you’ll see a measurable boost in productivity and margins.
8. Improves health and safety practices
EAM software can be a profit-producer by decreasing expenses related to workplaces injuries and illnesses. Better preventive maintenance practices enabled by EAM systems can help keep your equipment safer, reducing the risk for workers related to harmful electrical discharge, gas leaks, contact with debris and other accidents.
A fully fledged EAM solution can also keep employees on track with safety training.
From proper use of personal protective equipment to approved procedures for hazardous jobs, incident reduction relies first and foremost upon sound training. When every worker’s training is up to date and documented in the EAM platform, your organization is far less likely to face regulatory fines and excessive worker’s compensation costs.
Safety’s profit potential shouldn’t be overlooked. In 2018 alone, work injuries and related time loss cost United States companies a total of $170.8 billion or an average of $1,100 per worker and $41,000 per injury.
Boost profits with ManagerPlus EAM Software
ManagerPlus Lightning is the EAM choice for large enterprises. With Lightning’s single cloud-based solution, you can organize, track, schedule and manage everything under one platform: assets, inspections, preventive maintenance, work orders, inventory, purchasing and more.
Just as importantly, you can integrate these asset-related functions with a customizable analytics dashboard, offering your stakeholders a bird’s-eye view of your most important metrics. Quickly generate reports that provide evidence of cost savings, margins and insight for future plans.