All assets of a company need to be reliably documented and easily accessible. In particular, these requirements apply to a company’s production-critical or business-critical assets. Today this can only be achieved with a well-functioning asset management system. When a company manages its assets efficiently and smartly it is able to anticipate future needs for investments. Such a company has more detailed understanding of its assets, and is also more familiar with its performance potential.
‘A company’s personnel, regardless of their department or their actual location, should have easy access to essential and up-to-date information. On the other hand, not all information can and should be in the reach of just anyone. If a company’s assets are properly documented and managed in terms of data security, it will produce efficiency and security. Moreover, it also makes it possible to derive the best possible benefits from the company’s assets at any moment in time,’ says Niko Pahkala, ALMA’s Vice President and asset management specialist.
Who is in charge of the company’s critical information?
Asset management of a company does not become efficient and reliable spontaneously. There are enough traps and stumbling-blocks, but these can also be avoided with proper planning.
Not looking at a company’s assets and their management from a long-term and the strategic perspective of the company generally causes problems. People tend to resort to thinking that their business will just keep on running smoothly.
‘In such cases people often tend to forget what are all the things for which the company is responsible, where the company's critical information is stored and how it is managed. What are the risks and the challenges that the company might face if business-critical information leaves the company along with individual employees,’ he asks.
Basic matters should be in place before any artificial intelligence projects are launched
First, the company’s basic asset management aspects must be put in order.
‘The matter of whether this is the proper time to consider additional contributions e.g. into any AI (Artificial Intelligence) or Big Data projects depends on the starting position of the company, and the level of maturity of its asset management aspects. If basic data concerning maintained assets are still randomly managed, while events are recorded in systems with a varied degree of perfection, matters of e.g. AI or Big Data should not be put at the top of the priorities’ list,’ Pahkala admits.
This means that the company’s standing, operating processes and operating practices should be well understood. In this case it is possible to enjoy all potential benefits of developing an asset management system.
Ensuring transparency, consistency and continuity of business
Businesses can have different types of assets: physical (e.g. building, machinery, equipment, systems) or intangible (such as software, know-how, operating practices, and information). If a company wishes to take care of their assets and thus derive both short-term and long-term benefits and efficiency of their operations, it is advisable to acquire an asset management system to support the business.
‘Ensuring transparency, consistency and continuity of business, regulatory compliance and continued improvement of the quality of operations are some of the typical drivers underpinning the development of asset management and systems,’ Niko Pahkala specifies.
A scalable asset management system grows according to the needs of the business
With ALMA’s data systems and solutions provide extensive possibilities for tackling challenges of asset management, enterprise resource planning, daily management, maintenance, data management, designing and projecting.
‘Our solutions can be applied in asset management at different development stages of the company. Our solutions are also scalable, which means that they can be used for long-term development of the company’s business. The attractive feature of ALMA’s solutions is that all different sub-areas of asset management can be brought to the same platform, and used to create an integrated and smart single system,’ says Pahkala.
In an ALMA system enterprise resource planning, as well as management of tasks and events can be targeted towards specific managed assets.
‘ALMA offers a well-functioning solution for lifecycle management. The solution makes it possible to strengthen considerably cooperation and exchange of information between different functions of a company, such as between production and maintenance.’