In today’s high-risk industrial environments, the ability of an asset to perform effectively and efficiently is of critical importance to achieve business objectives. The pivotal focus of a typical asset integrity and reliability management program is to maintain the asset in a healthy-for-service condition while increasing its remaining life in the most secure, safe, and cost-effective manner.
But one of the biggest constraints organizations face during asset reliability or asset integrity implementation is the understanding and acceptance of its extensive process. In most cases, the following situations might happen:
- After a thorough assessment and analysis report, the results are not being implemented
- People (operators and supervisors) are unsure of reliability or asset management
- Lack of support from management and C-level executives
- Maintenance personnel think the plans are added work or unnecessary
- Lack of teamwork during working sessions and a lack of participation during preparation planning
- Executives or service providers feel like they are selling a product to the company vs. providing a solution for the company’s core challenges
- Substantial methodologies like root cause analysis (RCA), risk based inspection (RBI), and criticality analysis are not utilized at all in conjunction with asset management plans
There are numerous factors to make the above circumstances appear, but language is the most important factor. And, I don’t mean English or Spanish or Japanese or Chinese, I mean the language of asset reliability and integrity.
Here is a glimpse of what could be happening inside your organization regarding an asset optimization plan:
- Absence of right personnel in the right roles
- Only few people understand an asset management culture
- Executives in responsible positions don’t know about these methodologies and how it can help them in improving asset reliability
- Investment decisions are made based on cost instead of lifecycle cost
- Corrective decision making is based on random feelings instead of risk
- No recognition between preventive and reactive risk handling modes because of historical “firefighting” mode to tackle risks
- Organizations aren’t listening to their assets and there is no measurement, so the direction of asset performance is unclear
Pressing point of volatile oil market
In the case of discussing current oil market dynamics, most organizations are talking about cutting expenditures on major operating costs and thereby seeking to maximize asset productivity. The challenge C-level executives face is ensuring the reliability and integrity of its core assets—such as pipelines, offshore drilling rigs, and plant process systems—and streamlining its maintenance throughout the assets’ service life.
Some of the practices that could be referred to during these pressing scenarios are:
- Initiate knowledge transfer sessions among departments concerning risk aspects, asset availability, lifecycle cost, and elemental thinking to all levels in the organization
- Establish feasible asset integrity goals and that must be in context to show early results for sustaining the improvement cycle
- Establish a basic KPI scoreboard for operating assets and determine how to gather and polish the asset data and analyze its trends
- Empower company-wide lean practitioners and integrity engineers to speak about their concerns and challenges with maintenance planning and asset reliability issues
- Work collaboratively and integrate asset-oriented goals with corporate goals, focusing on the ones impacting the organization’s bottom-line performance
- Aim to break age-old paradigms like, “we always do it this way”
- Fill the gaps in existing asset management plans and aim for everyone in your organization to speak the same language by implementing a strategy focused on short-term, medium-term and long-term results
Now, it may be overwhelming to consider all these perspectives, but organizations need expertise and leadership to devise a decisive strategy revolving around their enterprise wide assets.
Can your organization answer these questions?
- Does your organization have a comprehensive asset management strategy?
- How critical are specific assets? How could your assets fail? And are there mitigation procedures in place?
- Do decision-makers have a multidimensional view (inscribing control view, picture view, transaction view, compliance view, trend view) to determine their asset performance management plans?
If the answer is no to all or even one of these questions, intelligent asset strategies can drive a realistic asset performance management to create a complete, holistic and real-time view of how systems, people, and physical assets perform while gauging the impact they have on your business’ bottom line.