Why the new decade is set to drive significant APM change for big industry
Asset performance management (APM) is advancing at an incredible rate, and this decade is set to bring the biggest innovations yet. However, as industrial businesses continue to face huge cost pressures and try to do more with fewer resources, many are increasingly turning to technology to establish how better production capacity can be achieved from existing assets.
These pressures are accompanying a generational shift in the workplace whereby we’re seeing a blended workforce in both age and knowledge. With new technology comes the younger workforce that brings new ways of working, alongside modern expertise and digital skillsets. Now, organizations are now rushing to discover ways of translating institutional knowledge of the retiring workforce onto the next generation, all while the working environment becomes more technology-driven. It is this tech-oriented workplace – comprised of high-speed internet access, mobile devices, touch screens and virtual reality – that is now the expected norm.
This blended workforce has encouraged the proliferation of many advanced technologies including predictive maintenance, cloud, big data and mobile asset performance management 4.0 as a key business priority.
APM 4.0 is leveraging industry 4.0 and industrial IoT principles to increase the operational insight for users across the decision-making chain, developing an environment that bridges the IT/OT gap. In turn, it is empowering people, processes and equipment to communicate and collaborate across traditional boundaries.
2020 is set to bring huge evolutions to APM in addition to its existing benefits. With APM, customers have made $17M+ savings in a single predictive analytics catch, a 20% increase in asset availability, a 25% reduction in unplanned downtime and 30% improvement in asset utilization. So, what are the changes we’re expected to see driven by APM in 2020 and beyond?
1. Democratizing access to different data silos
With increasing customer and workforce demands, information is now being democratized through customer-defined data models that give all business staff and stakeholders source of truth. This is largely being driven by the introduction and growing popularity of digital twins of major plans and offshore rigs.
2. Rise of the connected worker
APM is primarily concerned with digital transformation, and technologies such as predictive analytics and mobility work processes all roll into an organization’s broader digital transformation strategy. However, we must not disregard the human element of the equation. Digital transformation, to an extent, concerns how we can augment workers with digital technology to make their job safer, more accurate and more precise.
3. Rapid anomaly detection
Now that more siloes of information are connected up and being processed and analyzed, we’ll see a greater prominence on predictive analytics. However, we’re moving beyond the prediction of equipment failures and instead spotting deviations and known good-behaviors to catch anomalies before they occur. This is being driven by advanced machine learning and AI technologies.
4. Digital technology fueling sustainability
APM 4.0 is key for the cycle of continuous business improvement and making existing stock go further. This is based on the principle that businesses get more value out of the asset investments that they have already made. However, many are trying to use digital technology to fuel sustainability and this is a huge challenge. With technology, businesses are trying to establish the best and most efficient production processes that are the also the most environmentally sustainable. Organizations must remember that there’s always a point where they can do more than they’re already doing, even if they consider themselves to be incredibly sustainable. Digital technologies will gradually make this easier.
Kim Custeau has 30+ years of experience in industrial asset management software and services. She is currently responsible for the strategic direction, commercialization and development of AVEVA's Asset Performance software portfolio globally, delivering solutions that help customers improve asset reliability and performance to maximize return on capital investments and increase profitability.