Integrating EAM Systems is a Major Challenge, According to Industry Execs

Jan. 8, 2006
Integration between two Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) systems is a major challenge that hinders organizations from achieving optimal value from their investments

Integration between two Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) systems is a major challenge that hinders organizations from achieving optimal value from their investments, according to a recent survey conducted by Impress Software. More than 70% of executive respondents claim top business challenges of EAM projects to be financial control, timely visibility into project costs and status, and accuracy of project information--largely driven by the use of multiple information systems.

"The recent survey shows that when executing large projects like construction, plant turnaround, or plant shutdown, information sharing between departments is the key to success," said Warren Utt, president and chief executive officer of Impress Software. "In order for projects to stay on-time and on-budget, project managers and finance executives must be able to share accurate and timely data. With a high volume of projects taking place at many organizations, fully automating the links between systems is the only way to make sure that happens."

The survey found that EAM projects are constantly in progress, with the most commonly executed activities relating to routine maintenance work (82%), followed by turnaround/shutdown/outage projects (74%) and construction of new facilities (58%). It's important to note that most organizations execute more than one type of EAM project. In fact, nearly half of the respondents reported completing more than 250 routine maintenance projects per year, and more than half of the respondents complete between one and 10 turnarounds/shutdowns/outage projects each year.

With more than 80% of organizations using more than one system to accomplish EAM projects, the integration challenge is widespread. Nearly half of the respondents that use multiple systems reported that they either employ a manual process to transfer data between systems, or that their systems share absolutely no data at all.

With the large volume of EAM projects taking place, and with the majority of organizations executing these projects without automated links between their systems, the survey found that 55% of projects are completed past deadline, and 50% are completed over-budget. Additionally, of those projects that are over-budget, more than 20% are over-budget by more than 50%.

The survey was completed by 92 EAM executives at industry conferences and through online polling to provide their peers with a better understanding of current practices and industry-wide challenges. Executive respondents held responsibilities for business units, single plants or entire companies from a wide range of industries including chemical, energy, utility, engineering & construction, oil & gas, public sector, aerospace & defense and forestry & land management.

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