Bridging the Asset Information Gap in Operations & Maintenance

In a recent research*, the Arc Advisory Group identified Information Handover Management, Accessibility & Interoperability and Information Change Management as key elements of an effective asset information management strategy.

After discussing the role that Enterprise Visualization can play for design / build information handover management (see blog post "Strategies for the New Build Era in Utilities"), we will now talk about the importance of providing Operations & Maintenance personnel with ready access to complete, accurate and up-to-date asset information in order to ensure that plants are operated and maintained safely and efficiently.

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O&M data and information directly impacts an organization's performance in areas like safety, cost, production capacity and asset availability, etc. It is then critical to make sure that O&M personnel have access to the right information at the right time. Yet, an inordinate amount of time is spent searching for and accessing information. A study conducted by the Electric Power Research Institute indicated that maintenance workers can spend up to 30% of their time searching for information.

In order to address this issue, Owner & Operators have invested in a variety of solutions to improve information access by digitizing paper-copies of supporting asset/project documents; storing digital information in document management solutions, which provide document search and retrieval capabilities as well as version control, check-in/out, etc; and investing in asset lifecycle management and project management systems that provide direct access to critical asset and project data;

All these solutions have helped Owners & Operators address information accessibility challenge, but only to a certain extent since the problem of accessing technically advanced information like engineering drawings and technical documentation still remains: once information is found, O&M workers still need to struggle to get this information in a format that they can read and use to perform their activities.

By leveraging AutoVue's enterprise visualization capabilities and integrating it with document management solutions and enterprise applications like Project Management solutions or EAM and CMMS, Owners & Operators can build a complete and efficient platform to address the asset information management and accessibility challenges.

The integrated solution allows to surface visual information contained in documents stored in content management directly in the context of the applications that O&M workers are using on a daily basis. AutoVue integrated with an EAM solution for instance provides maintenance planners and technicians with instant access to any type of supporting documents - like engineering drawings, P&Ids, standard operating procedures (SOPs), work permits, material safety datasheets, etc, directly in the context of a particular work order. Workers are better equipped to make informed decisions and resolve maintenance issues in a timely fashion. Owners and Operators can reduce the complexity (and frustration!) of accessing and applying information so that workers can focus on high value activities rather than wasting time searching and accessing information.

You can learn more about the usage of AutoVue Enterprise Visualization solutions to support Operations & Maintenance activities by reading our customer success stories posted on Oracle.com. Customers like Vattenfall Ringhals, the largest nuclear power plant in Scandinavia, estimate the total value of work saved further to the introduction of Oracle AutoVue in the plant to be approximately US$500,000 per year. Stora Enso, a global paper, packaging and wood products company, indicates that AutoVue helped thekm save an average of US$80,000 per year in reduced downtime costs.

The third post of this series will focus on how Enterprise Visualization can help support Information Change Management in asset-intensive industries. In the interim, rest and enjoy Labor Day!

* Arc Advisory, Asset Lifecycle Information Management, May 2010

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The authors of this blog are members of the AutoVue Enterprise Visualization team at Oracle. The views expressed on this blog reflect those of the members and do not necessarily reflect the views of Oracle.

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