On Wednesday, June 20, LNS Research co-presented the webcast, “Smart Maintenance: Using APM 4.0 to Drive Better Business Results” with AVEVA, an engineering and industrial software provider. The presentation explained why leading manufacturers use APM 4.0 to achieve balance between maintenance performance and overall economic performance. The discussion included an examination of which industries are prime candidates for APM 4.0, where to begin, and how to assess results.
A1: There is no definitive answer to the question except “more than one!” APM 4.0 is a maintenance approach just as Industrie 4.0 is a manufacturing approach. You cannot buy APM 4.0 off-the-shelf from a single vendor. However, the rest of the answer is “as few as possible to achieve your APM 4.0 vision” because as with any technology platform implementation there will be integration needs to achieve full functionality. The more capabilities you can get from a single provider, and one that is key to your overall Industrie 4.0 strategy as well, the better.
Q2: Who in the organization should drive APM 4.0 solution selection?
A2: Deciding on the portfolio of APM 4.0 technologies and solutions should be a cross-functional effort and led by the individual that has management's authority to drive Digital Transformation throughout the enterprise. Often this will be the individual charged with driving Industrie 4.0 as well, but it does not have to be the same person. The best candidate to drive the effort is someone who sees that APM is not just about reducing downtime or maintenance costs but understands that done right, APM drives higher performance and profitability.
Q3: What is the best place to start with an APM 4.0 project?
A3: Where the pain is the greatest. Take a MacGyver approach to your maintenance issues – cobble together a solution to fix the problem with whatever tools you have on hand or can quickly fabricate but remember – even MacGyver recognized his quick-fix approach was a temporary or one-shot solution. The point of a MacGyvered solution is to prove the concept, then to drive lasting gains through continuous improvement and deploying a long-term solution that is consistent with your Operational Architecture.
Q4: As part of APM 4.0, how do we ensure good data storage management, particularly given the cost of huge volume of data?
A4: Again, the importance of Operational Architecture can’t be overemphasized. Making sure you have the right model for structured, semi-structured, and unstructured data storage, retrieval, and analysis is fundamental to a successful APM 4.0 approach. Fortunately, the costs are coming down, and Cloud storage as well as the ability to integrate data across Cloud and Edge systems is becoming easier and more affordable with time.
Q5: How can an organization ensure smooth transition to Industry 4.0 while guaranteeing continuity of daily processes?
A5: Use a top-down thinking but bottom-up implementation approach. Find a problem that affects profitability, and that is related to reliability. Then use classic Six Sigma or lean problem-solving approaches to find the root cause and show how optimum maintenance is a better strategy.