Internet of Things (IOT)

IoT gives asset management a new boost

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Forget all the classic opinions regarding enterprise asset management (EAM).

Links to new technological possibilities such as the IoT open up a world of new possibilities. This provides a real-time, mobile component when managing the life cycle of business resources and work processes. This development has not gone unnoticed.

With IBM Maximo, we were recently designated as the leader in the domain of enterprise asset management for the nineteenth time by Gartner. Part of this success is due to the fact that we have consistently continued to further develop the product and have enriched it with new technologies such as the Internet of things (IoT), cognitive computing, links to external data sources, block chain technology and augmented reality. Not to mention making Maximo mobile: with Maximo Anywhere, you can manage everything from your smartphone or tablet.

Whereas in the past Maximo primarily provided user-specific insight into a company’s resources, with the deployment of sensor technology and the IoT, these assets are now linked to the system in real time. The traditional EAM is thus enriched with relevant information regarding the intensity of use, the current maintenance condition and external circumstances such as the influence of the weather at a specific location.

This gives enterprise assets completely new value for customers, for example in the framework of optimized maintenance, inventory, planning, audits and creating new business models.

Groundbreaking

This leads to groundbreaking possibilities. Take the management of a wind farm, where every turbine requires a specific form of maintenance after a specific number of run hours. In a traditional asset management system, you determine when you can best perform this maintenance based on historical data. When the parts in question are equipped with sensors, you can determine the optimum maintenance moment much more accurately. For example, this may be later than originally expected, because there has been little wind during a particular period, or earlier than originally expected because a storm or some other form of extreme weather has occurred. Certainly, if the system is linked to external data sources, such as The Weather Company, an IBM Business – that has 5,500 measurement points in the Netherlands alone – you can achieve enormous advantages. By combining this with augmented reality, you can deploy your maintenance technicians much more efficiently.

The implications extend even further. Using this combination of technologies, harbors, public utilities, and governments not only gain better insight into their own assets and processes; by linking all this data within a larger whole, they can ultimately create ‘smart infrastructures’ and smart ecosystems. For manufacturers and their chain partners, ‘smart industry’ becomes achievable. Because their products are enriched with an information layer, companies can introduce their activities to the market based on other models.

An elevator manufacturer transforms itself into a company that offers ‘people movement’. A manufacturer of automobile tires delivers the desired profile depth as a service. Sensors tell you everything about specific use, possible atypical wear and tear and external influences. The end user thus benefits from a lower price, greater flexibility and, above all, much better service provision specifically attuned to his or her individual situation. In short, better and smarter use of data leads to various forms of disruption.

Business partners

Of course, the possibilities and chances differ per sector and per company. Our business partners play an important role in recommending and implementing IBM Maximo. They are steadfast parties, who frequently know the product better than anyone else and who always have the requisite technical expertise and industry-specific knowledge. They are able to optimally configure the solution and can assist customers in determining how they can further utilize and enrich the application, with market or sector-specific solutions, among others.

The cloud plays an increasingly important role here as a delivery model. Even though many customers run IBM Maximo on-site, more and more its users are making the transition to the cloud. Certainly when it comes to facilitating a mobile workforce and linking with the IoT and external data sources and IBM Watson artificial intelligence, for example. In such cases, the cloud is primarily a tool and not an objective in itself.

As we have noted, the movement to mobile is an important subsequent step. All functionality is available to the mobile employee, no matter what the brand or platform. As IBM, we are making a considerable investment in the further development of Maximo, so that we continue to be the leader in the field for the coming years. Download the infographic and study how Maximo can work for your organization.

IBM Watson Internet of Things, Business Partner Manager, Benelux

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