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How Enterprise Asset Management systems are helping to fight COVID-19


Progressive TSL's clients work in asset-intensive industries operating across a range of sites from African gold mines to North Sea oil platforms. The current pandemic has introduced a host of new challenges for the mining, energy and engineering sectors. These businesses need to continue to work as effectively as possible while keeping their team's fitness and health as the highest priority.

Working effectively during the pandemic

Taking into account governmental guidelines and assessing what is necessary for a particular workforce, both from a logistical perspective and personal one, to return safely will take great measures for many businesses. It will be the organisations that implement the correct measures which will have the greatest chance of success in return to operations.”
Dr Mark Parrish, Regional Medical Director, Northern Europe at International SOS in Mining Review.

Our clients are finding their Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) Systems (Infor EAM and IBM Maximo) can be pivotal in controlling the COVID-19 spread amongst the workforces at their sites.

How Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) is helping to fight COVID

  • Prioritising Work Orders
    During this period, priorities may change with market conditions forcing some companies to change asset strategies from maximising asset utilisation to cost control. This may require a reprioritisation of Work Orders from their default setting. This is a simple adjustment within EAM – changes in priorities can be made to either a group of Work Orders with a shared attribute, e.g. location or type of work or at an individual Work Order level. Work Orders relating to COVID management and safety of the workforce may be assigned the highest priority.

  • New COVID-related Work Order Templates
    Some of our client's, for example, those working in African countries who have already faced the challenges of other epidemics, e.g. Ebola, may already have work templates set up in EAM for managing cleaning and decontamination of workspaces. However, these may need adjusting to reflect new directives. For other companies, the current pandemic has called for a host of new work templates to be set up in their EAM systems. Supporting documentation with cleaning instructions and visual guides can be attached as appropriate. The easy to use EAM interface enables existing templates to be copied and adapted to reflect specific requirements, social distancing constraints or location. Key materials can be added automatically, e.g. hand sanitiser and cleaning fluid. Permits to Work can include requirements for the necessary COVID related cleaning activity to have been performed. Constraints can be assigned so that individuals or teams cannot complete the work if they do not have the necessary COVID training certification or equipment.

  • Managing PPE stock through EAM
    Our client's Supply Chain Management teams have been using the inventory management facilities within their Infor EAM and Maximo systems to prepare for the current pandemic.  When the virus, unfortunately, hit the countries where their operatives were based, they had full, up-to-the-minute visibility and control of their PPE stock levels.  The procurement workflows within the EAM system ensure that all stock levels are carefully monitored, and new equipment is ordered as necessary, recognising order lead times and transit to (often remote) sites. Purchases and movement of critical stocks, eg. PPE can be prioritised. EAM can also keep records of the individuals working at each site and what equipment they have, including who has been issued with PPE. Workflows can be created so that staff cannot complete work without the appropriate equipment. The new equipment can be reserved directly via the EAM.

  • Tracking COVID Status
    Qualifications can be assigned to individuals within EAM. These typically include information about training qualifications, Visas etc. for compliance purposes. These qualifications can be assigned an expiry date. This feature can also be used to log COVID related attributes, e.g. whether an individual has had a COVID test or whether an individual has been trained in how to wear the necessary PPE. Expiry dates can be applied to these attributes. Similarly, if and when an immunisation is available, this can also be logged here along with the expiry date.

  • COVID-19 KPIs
    New configurable KPIs related to COVID-19 can be introduced, tracked and analysed within EAM. These can include the number of open permits, the number of open work orders etc related to cleaning, contamination and incidents. These KPIs can be viewed at a global level across all sites or at an individual site level.

  • Visualisation of floor plans
    As we address new working practices, many office-based staff are now working from home where possible. When these staff do visit offices, the layout of the offices and meeting spaces will need redesigning to address social distancing rules. The OpenCAD module embedded within Infor EAM enables space management and redesign of workspaces.

  • Compliance
    We are expecting that new regulations will require full audit trails to demonstrate that appropriate risk management processes have been followed. EAM enables you to maintain a full log of COVID related work completed, e.g. risk assessment site visits, cleaning, decontamination, staff testing/results and immunisation records (once available).

  • Crew rotation
    During the pandemic it has been necessary, at times, to reduce the frequency that crews are rotated on remote sites. Shift patterns, therefore, may need to be changed so that those on-site are given enough rest. EAM can show the impact of these changes on the current workload, and work plans can be adjusted accordingly within the system.

  • Remote Working
    To minimise travel to remote sites, you can utilise remote monitoring - rather than relying solely on operatives physically inspecting the assets. Where appropriate, data about the health of an asset can be tracked remotely using IoT sensors on the assets or other forms of data collection including SCADA. Using Data Lake and Artificial Intelligence (AI) technologies, including Infor Coleman, Birst and IBM Watson, this data can be captured and analysed. Alerts can be fed through to the EAM system to indicate where there is concern about the performance or health of machinery at the site. Inspection or maintenance requests can then be created in the EAM system and, where necessary, work orders planned in. This approach can reduce the need for operatives to make unnecessary inspection visits to the site. The Infor OS, Ming.le tool enables staff to manage the progression of work and approvals remotely from mobile devices and tablets.


Contact Progressive

For more information on how technology can support operatives during the current pandemic, read our recent blog.

To read Progressive's response to COVID 19, click here.

To learn more about Infor's approach to managing workspaces after COVID 19 watch this on-demand webinar

We would welcome the opportunity to explore how EAM can help your organisation return safely, productively and efficiently. Please contact alison.richards@progressive-tsl.com to arrange a convenient time for a call.

About Progressive TSL 

Progressive TSL is a business consultancy and solutions provider dedicated to providing best-of-breed finance, supply chain and asset management systems for asset-intensive industries across the globe. They are Infor Accredited Gold Channel Partners and IBM (Maximo) Silver Business Partners.



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