You know you need a better solution for tracking and maintaining your equipment — but should you invest in a computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) or enterprise asset management (EAM) software? Both CMMS and EAM offer greater transparency into your assets and maintenance activities, and there is some overlap in their functionality. Sometimes the terms are even used interchangeably.
If you’re trying to decide which solution is right for your organization, we’re here to help.
It offers an integrated, accessible, and automated system to store information such as:
Moving this crucial asset data onto a digital, cloud-based platform improves efficiency and allows you to take a more proactive approach to maintenance and work order management.
Facility managers and maintenance professionals from a wide range of industries rely on CMMS software to more efficiently manage inventory, work orders, and more.
Pegasus Manufacturing is a world leader in specialized contract manufacturing services, providing new technology for everything from military planes to submarines.
Facilities manager Glenn Suprono, realized he needed help keeping track of all the equipment at the company’s 52,000-square-foot facility, which serves over 70 customers globally. Investing in Hippo CMMS significantly reduced the time he spent submitting and organizing work orders.
A CMMS helps organizations overcome this challenge by placing critical maintenance data at their fingertips. It also reduces communication errors by putting field service professionals in direct contact with the information they need — rather than relying on memos, scribbled notes, ambiguous emails, and other inefficient means of assigning and describing maintenance tasks.
Perhaps you had been running maintenance programs on your own for years, but now you’ve added several other technicians to the team. You need greater transparency and visibility into your maintenance activities. You also want the ability to schedule preventive maintenance and be assured that someone has been assigned to complete those tasks. CMMS platforms track and enforce preventive maintenance schedules, so nothing falls through the cracks.
Assets have to be tracked meticulously not just for maintenance and performance but also for auditing purposes. CMMS software helps teams find all the information they need quickly.
The average cost of unplanned equipment downtime can be as much as $260,000 per hour. With a CMMS platform, managers can streamline maintenance and work order processes to achieve maximum equipment uptime.
Getting the best return on investment means getting the most life out of every asset. By mining the data stored in a CMMS platform, managers can discern how the overall maintenance strategy impacts the longevity of their investments, then adjust accordingly to maximize equipment lifecycles.
Maintenance concerns must be addressed quickly to minimize costly downtime. The power of a CMMS platform lies in its ability to immediately alert managers who can deploy the appropriate repair teams and then track the progress of work orders in real-time. The end result is a faster fix with greater accountability.
In addition to tracking assets, managing work orders, and scheduling preventive maintenance, EAM software allows managers to:
Enterprise asset management software consolidates data from many sources, geographical locations, and assets into one place, allowing your team to access data anywhere. It also connects the information gathered on assets to your organization’s strategy and performance.
Like CMMS software, EAM software is frequently used by maintenance managers. However, because EAM offers greater visibility into KPIs across your organization, it’s also used by procurement, materials management, and accounting departments. Accounting teams, for instance, use asset details to plan budgets.
Data analysts use EAM software to analyze asset lifecycles, improve processes and workflows. Business leaders who want to make timely, informed decisions with real-time data also use EAM software and its dashboard and reporting features. EAM software is particularly useful to organizations with a large number of assets and complex maintenance or compliance needs.
For instance, Gas Field Specialists provide a wide range of services to the oil and gas industry, including well construction, equipment rentals, and transportation services. The company needs to ensure its equipment is in good working condition at all times while complying with strict government regulations. The GFS team performs thousands of maintenance services, inspections, and certifications at regular intervals. For instance, to ensure its pipelines meet required specifications, it must regularly calibrate 140 pieces of measuring equipment, including ultrasonic thickness gauges and hydraulic torque wrenches.
Enterprise asset management takes a broader approach to the way assets are managed and maintained. It encourages leaders to look at the network of assets in their organizations and make informed decisions on how to optimize their performance.
Leaders who make the decision to invest in EAM recognize they need to manage more than work orders and preventive maintenance. They need a 10,000-foot view of all their assets, lifecycle and costs—as well as the ability to drill down to get detailed information on a single part.
By closely tracking and managing your assets, you gain key insights that can revamp your asset landscape and improve operations. For example, you may figure out that a particular type of equipment requires more maintenance than others and then choose to replace it.
When a critical piece of equipment fails on the manufacturing floor, it can take weeks to receive the replacement parts. While the cost of repair can be significant, the cost of halted production can be even greater. EAM software helps plant managers and other maintenance professionals take the pulse of their plant so they can anticipate failures before they happen.
The origin of CMMS platforms is closely linked to the goal of replacing manual maintenance records with automated software. Even as the scope of CMMS has continued to evolve, it still centers around bringing down maintenance costs through automation.
EAM’s later origins placed its focus on interdependencies between assets and how their collaboration affects the strategy of the enterprise. EAM software recognizes the role of asset management in the big picture and uses consolidated data for root cause analysis, lifecycle cost analysis, and more.
While CMMS platforms elevate asset performance by efficient handling of service requests and work orders, and tracking assets, EAM software can help answer more in-depth strategy questions, such as:
If you are running a large-scale enterprise with multiple entities—assets across multiple geographies or a combination of assets such as manufacturing equipment, IT infrastructure, and design technologies—EAM works in your favor. However, if you are a small or medium sized business, a CMMS platform should be sufficient.
EAM software is typically more expensive than a CMMS, so assess your budget and return on investment before making the call.
EAM typically has broader functionality than a CMMS, so if you are primarily managing work orders and maintenance activities, EAM might be more than you need. However, if your objectives are more diverse and you want to make informed decisions by monitoring assets throughout their lifecycle, EAM is a better option.
If you are a facilities manager or a maintenance professional who is currently using spreadsheets, a simple, user-friendly CMMS might be your best bet. If you have others involved—such as procurement engineers, finance professionals and senior leaders—you may want to consider enterprise asset management software.