CMMS: Step By Step

July 20, 2009
David Berger, P.Eng., Plant Services contributing editor, explains how to get more from your CMMS through process mapping.

Your customers seek suppliers that can consistently provide the greatest value for money in terms of quality, service delivery and price. Therefore, to stay competitive, you must strive to deliver products and services more efficiently and effectively, through a series of end-to-end processes that start and finish with the customer. Continuous process improvement helps you create value and eliminate waste as defined by the customer.

Note that processes need not directly involve end customers, such as work order management, spare parts procurement and preventive maintenance processes. However, your customers don’t wish to pay for any processes that either directly or indirectly drive costs up, increase lead times or reduce product quality. Thus, there’s potential for gaining a significant competitive edge through continuous improvement of asset management processes. This includes configuring your CMMS in support of improved processes.

Process mapping is a technique that allows users to represent key processes graphically to more easily discuss and evaluate their effectiveness. By comparing “current state” process maps with “future state” maps, users can visualize the changes required to achieve expected savings and benefits. At a more detailed level, process maps also show how systems such as your CMMS support the process flow.

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