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85% of RCM Recommended Improvements Are Never Implemented: Is There a Better Solution?

It is disappointing when reliability-centered maintenance (RCM) studies are performed on a critical system, yet weeks roll on and then years go by without implementing the needed changes into the computerized maintenance management system (CMMS). The RCM team inevitably gets too busy with the day-to-day challenges and time just slips by. In fact, an industry survey of more than 250 companies conducted by reveals a remarkable concern: Over 85 percent of the recommendations from RCM analyses are never implemented. Aside from the short-term waste of corporate resources, this often drives program abandonment, as it reinforces buy-in resistance from both management and supporting staff. This is, after all, an understandable and predictable reaction since negative return on investment (ROI) is a fatal condition. This result can only be avoided by ensuring that the recommended RCM tasks are consistently entered into the CMMS immediately after the conclusion of the analysis, thus avoiding the inevitable day-to-day distractions. Recognizing this issue, the RCM and CMMS experts at JMS Software and Banetti teamed up to create the critical dynamic integration between RCM and CMMS. This integration eliminates dependency on manual intervention, thereby ensuring this critical step is never missed.

Figure 1: The vision of the Reliability Partners (Copyright 2019, Banetti Inc)

This venture took flight in January 2019, during a gathering sponsored by of the Reliability Partners® a group of 14 industry leading reliability organizations. These carefully selected organizations jointly resolved to enhance the business effectiveness and sustainability of reliability and asset management. The combined vision of the Reliability Partners is to advance the industry toward: Zero Accidents, Zero Downtime, Zero Waste.

It was during this meeting that the companies realized that by collaborating to make the transition between the one company’s RCM software and IBM® Maximo seamless, they could bring tremendous value to their clients. Shortly after this meeting, the respective teams from each company began collaborating to bring their vision into reality. The two teams continued to meet, discuss and study the impact of streamlining the process. Through their efforts, both parties developed a high level of confidence that this would ultimately drive a higher success rate in RCM programs, thus reducing the 85 percent implementation failure rate. Since January, their ongoing efforts are demonstrating additional benefits of this collaboration through a “Living RCM Program.” The implementation of a dynamic living program, established through a continuous feedback loop with Maximo, can improve upon the initial RCM-based preventive maintenance (PM) strategies established through CMMS measured reliability feedback.

This vision guided the creation of a system in which the RCM software guides in the selection of the optimal mixture of PMs based on system functions and mitigation of failure modes that result in functional failures. These PMs are then fed into Maximo with the reasoning for these selections provided via a dynamic integration. Feedback into the RCM software on PM selections is then returned using real-time asset performance data via the integration. Figure 2 illustrates how this dynamic integration functions.

Figure 2: Dynamic integration of RCM software with Maximo

At the start of an RCM process, a system must be selected for analysis. For this selection to yield the greatest benefit, an inquiry of which systems have the greatest number of reactive maintenance events and hours of unplanned downtime must be completed. These systems are the proven points of concern, having the largest negative impact on overall plant performance, downtime, reliability and, ultimately, profitability. In order to address this, the integration allows for the utilization of a Pareto chart to focus on these problem assets. This enables organizations to focus their efforts on the highest value systems to analyze. Once a system is selected, the component assets of that system are pushed to the RCM software. This allows for a functional review, as well as a failure mode and effects analysis (FMEA) and the selection of tasks to mitigate the failure modes. These tasks are then routed back to Maximo to generate new, optimized job plans for this system. Additionally, the FMEA data from RCM also provides Maximo with the appropriate problem codes and remedies for each of the assets.

Figure 3: An example of Maximo FMEA

The second phase of this collaboration is the expansion of the integration to inform the maintainers why the PM action is required. Having this type of information available within Maximo enables the maintainers to record direct feedback about the effectiveness and frequency of the tasks.

An advanced element of this collaboration is a feedback loop that allows RCM analysts to evaluate the effectiveness of the implemented RCM recommendations. The before and after metrics of the system’s performance, such as mean time between failures (MTBF), mean time to repair (MTTR), cost analysis and downtime analysis, can be reexamined as required. In the event of a downtime event in an RCM analyzed system, the integration will flag the event for review. RCM analysts can then carefully evaluate the event to discover gaps in strategy, like an unanticipated failure mode or a miscalculation on task frequency, and develop an appropriate mitigation strategy. Within Maximo, there is a parallel evaluation to determine if the RCM derived tasks were performed as planned and recommended, as well as if the PM included accurate and sufficient data to drive proper execution of these tasks.

Both JMS Software and Banetti are committed to this dynamic integration solution as a contribution to the foundational goals of the Reliability Partners and the overall reliability community, as well as to add value to their customers who use Maximo as their EAM/CMMS platform. The team is moving forward with a focus on the Reliability Partners’ target of zero accidents, zero downtime and zero waste.

Integrating RCM and CMMS into one seamless integration is a monumental step in the right direction toward significantly improving the implementation rate of RCM programs. Can the collaboration achieve the ideal state of 100 percent implementation of RCM results – a 566 percent improvement over where companies are today? While there is no telling what the future holds, the Reliability Partners are united in their commitment to the goal… are you?

Nick Jize

Nick Jize, CRL, is the co-founder of JMS Software, a company that produces RCM software solutions. Nick has a background in RCM and predictive maintenance leadership with over 30 years of experience helping customers improve their reliability programs. He has a master’s degree in Engineering.

Matt Boehne

Matt Boehne, CRL, is CEO of Banetti and an asset management industry leader with over 25 years in results-oriented implementations of the IBM Maximo CMMS platform for global customers in regulated industries. Matt’s passion to see organizations reap more value from their CMMS led him and Banetti to the Reliability Partners, forging relationships that have led to numerous reliability integrations and add-ons to the IBM Maximo suite.

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