TVA is achieving 99.999% reliability with Maximo

The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) is a power company serving 7 states.  As with most industries needing an enterprise asset management solution, reliability is a key metric.  For over 9M customers that receive their electricity from the TVA Transmission Division, having reliable service is important.  When I sat down with Lamont Rogers from TVA and active member of the Maximo Utility Working Group, he was very proud to tell me that TVA is achieving 99.999% reliability with Maximo Asset Management.

TVA is using Maximo to manage their assets and do their preventive maintenance.  Adding Cognos to the Maximo solution provides the analytics that both management and the maintenance team can benefit from to make better business decisions.

Lamont explains the importance of having “one version of the truth” regarding assets.  With Maximo and Cognos Reporting TVA has 18 offices interpreting the same data in the same way.  This is enabling them to make better business decisions and helping them to deliver a smarter infrastructure for their operations.

Watch the video to learn more:

To learn more about how IBM ranks in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Power Generation Enterprise Asset Management Software register for the report here.

Facilities managers using mobile applications are gaining more credibility

Facilities managers are an essential resource on college campuses and are are often taken for granted.  When parents take their children to visit a college campus or drop their children off to begin their school year it is almost a “given” that the buildings and facilities are in good condition and running smoothly, as they focus more on the curriculum and education aspects.  In today’s blog we will focus on how facilities managers using mobile applications are gaining more credibility in the community at the University of Hartford.

We learn from Jason Farrell from the University of Hartford that Maximo Asset Management is their enterprise asset management solution and is helping them to manage workflows and perform preventive maintenance.  Recently with the implementation of Maximo Mobile solutions, Jason tells us that having an integrated mobile solution increases productivity by capturing data and translating it into actions in real time.  This has gained the facilities management department credibility with the staff, the department and community members.  It is a smart efficient way of managing their buildings, facilities and assets across the campus.

With 7K life safety devices across the campus, including sprinklers and alarms, Jason points out the importance of having a solution that can deliver regulatory compliance and ensure safety across the campus in addition to helping the community feel comfortable about the campus.

With regards to quantifiable benefits from the Maximo solution, Jason shares that the University of Hartford has gone from a ratio of 20% preventive maintenance and 80% corrective maintenance to 50/50 in just four years.  This is quite the accomplishment and is ensuring operational efficiencies to control the bottom line total cost of ownership for the facilities and assets.  And in the end this helps to control tuition costs.

Take a look at the video interview:

Reference a similar story at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA):   link to blog.




Inner City Transit meets Stadiums

If you got my out-of-the-office email response last week I bet you were wondering “where in the world is @MaximoMary”!  Never fear, similar to my European vacation coverage, I’ve got blog coverage to share as inner city transit meets stadiums.  You will want to stay on board until the very end because this blog has twists and turns that you won’t see coming!  So hop on……

First up, public transportation.  In most big cities you will at least have buses and a metro, and residents as well as tourists rely on services to be on-time.  Whether they are traveling to work or in my case to a “fan meet and greet” at a baseball game, you can’t afford to be late……reliability matters!

As I boarded the metro on my vacation I captured observations of the assets……..the facilities, the turnstiles, the carriages, the doors, the wheels, the audio speakers…..and then the linear assets……the rails, the tunnels, the signals…….so many assets!  As a passenger you really do take things for granted… may check on-line records for safety and on-time arrivals, but once you board the train you are pretty much trusting that your journey will be successful,  Likely you are only thinking of the behind the scenes operations if you are a transit operator yourself or somehow connected to the public transportation business.  And of course if you are @MaximoMary where you know the importance of a good enterprise asset management solution!

For me this was top of mind because we had just completed our first demo in our “Inner City Transportation” series……An Inner City Transportation Journey:  From Buses to the Metro,  Take a look to learn how reliability matters for both transit operators and passengers:

To learn more about how IBM Maximo Asset Management is helping the Long Island Rail Road follow this link to the case study.

Back to my story……next up stadiums!  Maximo is used in many stadiums….from baseball to football to basketball to hockey, you name it stadiums look to IBM for a comprehensive solution to keep their stadiums operating efficiently.  The value is not only important for the stadium owners but also to ensure a favorable fan experience to keep fans coming back!

For me the ultimate stadium is the “new” Yankee stadium and I was finally there!  Even if you are not a Yankees fan (not sure how that can be!) you can surely appreciate the majestic value of the $1.6B stadium and the assets that need to be managed!  Everything from the facilities to the machines for the concessions to the seating to the flag poles to the fleet of vehicles to the heavy equipment to the lighting to the press booths …….. and not to mention the assets in Monument Park and the Museum!  WOW!  As I walked in awe I continued to think of the operators behind the scenes keeping the stadium operating flawlessly and the operational efficiencies being achieved.

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Did someone mention “fan experience”?  I never thought that I could beat the fan experience I previously had at a stadium (reference my blog with Dan Marino) ………….until I managed to meet one of my Yankee favorites………..Tino Martinez, the week he was being honored with a plaque at Monument Park.  Yes you heard right, @MaximoMary met Tino Martinez!

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This will be hard for me to top, but @MaximoMary is at the ready to bring you more public transit and stadium stories!  Stay tuned and as always comment here if you have someone for me to interview!


Improving decision making at Southern Power

No matter what decision you have to make in life, your decisions are always better if you use tools to help you make an informed decision.  But sometimes your tools lead you down a hole and complicate the decision.  That’s why today we’re going to share insights on improving decision making at Southern Power, without complication.

Southern Power is a subsidiary of Southern Company and the 2nd largest investor-owned utility company in the South Eastern United States.  Southern Power owns and operates 17 facilities across 8 states focusing on power generation from gas, biomass and recently solar energy.  With $4B of assets managed by IBM Maximo Asset Management, it was time for Maximo Mary’s Microphone to sit down with them and learn more about their operations.

In this interview we learn from Scott Dial that Southern Power was looking for an enterprise asset management solution that would help them to implement consistent processes and optimize inventory in a centralized warehouse.  But inventory and maintenance management were just the ground floor of the net income decisions.  Scott was looking for something that would help them with better decision making that would lead to lower total cost of ownership of their assets and optimize net income.

Cohesive Information Solutions, Inc,, a premier IBM Business Partner was able to help logically structure the data from Maximo  to enable Southern Power to visualize operations and ultimately improve decision making.  Anthony Honaker from Cohesive Information Solutions explains how their Propel solution is helping clients in utilities, oil and gas, manufacturing and transportation industries to align the decision making process.

Watch the video now

In addition, here is a link to the video Anthony mentions about Propel.

What’s making the Downer Group the partner of choice for rail operators

Traveling across country, any country by rail is always something I’ve wanted to do.  That’s why interviewing clients in the rail industry is very exciting for me, and why not talk to one in Australia!  As Australia’s leading provider of rolling stock asset management solutions, today we’ll learn what’s making the Downer Group the partner of choice for rail operators to deliver freight and passengers.

Manufacturing and maintaining 1500 locomotives and 1700 passenger cars to Australian rail operators is no small task and has been growing.  We learn from Uchiraka Yatawara and Abhijeet Rajankar that as this business grows, so do the compliance regulations.  The ability to manage the lifecycle of each asset class and to show the asset configuration management of all assets is key to becoming the partner of choice.  To use a baseball analogy, ensuring regulatory compliance gets you up to bat and then managing costs helps you to hit the home run.

In our Maximo Mary’s Microphone interview Uchiraka gives us the overview of the company and the importance of having a multi-class asset management solution in order to fully manage a government transportation system.  This was key for Downer Group to win the 30 year contract to manufacture and maintain the 676 carriages for the New South Wales Government.

In the interview Abhijeet explains the importance of upgrading to a state-of-the-art enterprise asset management solution for a 360-degree centralized view of operations on an enterprise-wide platform.  Abhijeet dives deeper with an example of the value of asset  configuration management for all assets……from the wheels to the carriage cars….and explains how this is key for safety and government audits.

Finally Abhijeet defines Smarter as “getting the right information to the right place at the right time”IBM enterprise asset management solutions including Maximo Asset Management and Maximo Asset Configuration Manager are helping Downer Group to do this.

Watch the video now

Also be sure to read the full story here.


Main topics for the MFUG were fuel management, telematics and VMRS codes

What do DTE Energy, Duke Energy, Lockheed Martin, JB Hunt and Wayne County Airport Authority have in common?  They all use IBM enterprise asset management solutions to manage their vehicle fleets and attended the Maximo Fleet User Group (MFUG) meeting hosted by DTE Energy in Detroit last week.  The main topics for the MFUG were fuel management, telematics and VMRS codes.

In case you weren’t able to follow my live tweeting from the event, I’ll give you a quick summary of the meeting and encourage you to think about joining the MFUG if you have a fleet that you need to manage.

First up was Daryl Geiken from Lockheed Martin who provided an overview of how Lockheed Martin addresses fuel management.  Whether your company sets parameters for fuel management by run hours, odometer readings or another metric, fuel consumption is definitely a hit to your P&L statement and warrants attention for any company focused on reducing expense.

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Collaborating on the presentation was Bill Brooks from Fuel Master (Syntech Systems).  The discussion was very interactive and gave participants food to take back to their companies for further thought on enhancements that they could make to their fuel management processes.

The next topic was Telematics by Matt Rockwood from International Telematics. I found this dashboard most interesting  because it showed a wide array of telematic data that you can use to better manage your fleet.

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In addition to the dashboards Matt discussed the importance of becoming “smarter, faster and more nimble” and the linkage for fleet managers to the always expanding Maximo Mobile Suite of solutions.

To learn more about Telematics, register for a demo here.

In addition, Dwayne Griffith of JB Hunt discussed the importance of VMRS (Vehicle Maintenance Recording Standards) codes to manage their 173K assets more efficiently.

To close, Jennifer Skovranko of DTE talked about their implementation of Maximo Mobile solutions.

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Everyone enjoyed the interactive meeting and when asked what the value of attending the MFUG was, the DTE team said “I don’t   feel so alone with my challenges”.  Exactly!

Join the MFUG today to stay current and learn about future meetings.

Maximo Mary experiences European Inner Cities Transportation first hand

Do regular bloggers ever turn off the think tank?  I know I don’t!  24x7x365!  So yes that did include my recent vacation to Rome for the Canonization of Pope John Paul II and Pope John 23, with side extension to Poland and the Czech Republic.  From the utilities to the public transportation services I looked for how enterprise asset management solutions were ensuring reliable assets and keeping citizens happy.  The tale of this blog is “Maximo Mary experiences European Inner Cities Transportation first hand”.

For the most part of my week in Rome we traveled by bus.  Many challenges facing bus operators and maintenance teams around buses.  As I rode many questions flooded my brain….how are they gathering their fuel management data?  is the data from their telematics systems flowing into their enterprise asset management solution?  are they making the most of their warranty recoveries?  are they doing preventive maintenance vs corrective?

In the end there were 2 questions for my time in Rome:  what EAM solution handles the pope mobile?  and how can we change the name of this company to “Maximo Mary”?

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Next up was Poland.  I rode the city-to-city buses as well as the rail.  Rolling stock challenges that I pondered… are they ensuring the trains are on time?  what are the key reliability & safety performance indicators that they are monitoring?  are they integrated with a mobile solution to ensure near real-time status?

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What was I missing in my quest for capturing the variety of modes of transportation?  Well there was the Vistula River right outside the famous Wawel Castle.  Yep, time for a boat ride on the Vistula River!  Not quite a “ferry transportation”……but they were tour boats & they require maintenance!  Questions that came to mind:  how are they importing fault-codes?  are automated alerts generating work orders for preventive maintenance?  and of course what is the process for fuel management?  My biggest concern was to not run out of fuel & to stay safe!

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Finally, on to Prague.  My question here focused around the infrastructure management:  how are they managing those catenary lines and the railways?  Is the linear solution integrated for a comprehensive enterprise asset management solution?

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I would have loved to visit a Maximo client to capture an on-site video, but then that would have meant that I really wasn’t on vacation!  Going through my archives, I hope you will indulge me as I include this video of PKP Cargo, a cargo rail company from Poland.  I think you will see that some of the challenges for their EAM solution are similar:

Interested in learning more about what to focus on when purchasing an enterprise asset management solution for inner city transportation?   Register for our buyers guide here.

I hope that I’ve got you thinking!  Continue to follow my blog for a front row seat for the release of upcoming videos addressing inner city transportation.

Where does inner-city public transportation begin?

Where does inner-city public transportation begin and what is the first focus for a city?  It really starts with infrastructure assets, including railways, roadways, catenary, switches, signals, bridges, tunnels and related structures.  These assets are typically categorized as linear assets, since they have a start and end measure that can be maintained by segment.  Linear asset management for Porto Alegre starts with managing public works and roads and that will be our focus today.

As we hear from Procempa, the Service Provider for Porto Alegre, cities need to adapt.  Citizens dictate that public services need to be “always” available and tax payer dollars need to be optimized to accommodate shrinking budgets.  When looking for a solution to enable Procempa to manage the city’s assets, their main focus was on a robust solution that would integrate the siloed systems within the city and equip administrators to make better decisions.

For Porto Alegre a “smarter city” is a “city that manages information better” to improve maintenance efficiencies with collaborative, data-driven asset management.  It’s a city “in which administrators use information to make decisions”.

With the IBM solution that includes Maximo Asset Management Porto Alegre is projecting that they will be able to:

  • reduce service request response time by 50%
  • reduce the workorder backlog by 30%
  • reduce the total cost of ownership of assets by 60%

Watch the video now:

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To learn more more about capabilities you need to focus on for inner-city public transportation solutions, including a focus on infrastructure, register for this “Select the right solution for inner-city transportation management” buyer’s guide here.

The advice given in this buyer’s guide for inner-city transportation organizations focused on infrastructure is to  “Look for a solution that offers a single, automated, centralized system for work orders, permits, tracking, scheduling and compliance reporting. It should control costs and complexity, while helping you maintain both infrastructure equipment and linear assets in a state of good repair.”  The guide recommends that you “look for a solution that:

  • Manages multiple types of infrastructure assets, including roads, track, catenary, switches, signals, bridges and tunnels (that is, linear assets that have a start and end measure that can be maintained by segment)
  • Provides geospatial, operational and linear visualization of infrastructure asset relationships—all from the same system—using geographic information system (GIS) technology
  • Provides a dynamic, geospatial context of work orders, assets and relevant land-based features and includes the ability to define linear work “segments” and track progress made against them
  • Delivers analytic data of infrastructure assets for decisions that meet regulatory requirements
  • Provides real-time collection of information via sensors to help manage preventive maintenance, optimize scheduling of repairs and improve reliability across the transit system
  • Provides graphical dragging and dropping of assignments to labor resources, while validating skill suitability and availability to related tools and/or materials
  • Integrates data from mobile users for near real-time status and KPI dashboard updates
  • Provides ad-hoc report development and data warehouse capabilities for business intelligence and analytics beyond KPI metrics”

Download the buyer’s guide here.

Maximo is making Manchester a smarter city

Recently when I asked Tim Clougherty from the City of Manchester, New Hampshire how Maximo is making Manchester a smarter city, Tim said the basis is that “you can’t improve what you can’t measure”.  How simple!

The City of Manchester is the largest city in New Hampshire with 110K residents and 10′s of thousands of assets.  With 280 employees in the Department of Public Works, Tim explains that having an enterprise asset management solution like Maximo Asset Management enables insight into operations and drives operational effectiveness.

A great example that Tim takes us through in this interview is how the analytics that Maximo provides the City of Manchester around the throughput of work orders, backlogs and the classifications of work by trade provided them with the visibility into which trade was generating the most work & in turn enabled them to determine that they needed to hire a new electrician.  They would not have known this without the Maximo solution.

Tim also highlights the impact of Maximo Mobile which has been implemented in the Facilities Division for 8 years.  He points out that there has been a significant improvement in productivity as a result of their 100% paperless environment.   Something so basic as providing the workforce with mobile devices that integrate into the asset management solution directly to increase real-time visibility and improved productivity.

Jonathan Baffa from Control Technology Solutions, an Advanced IBM Business Partner, has been with the city during the implementation and also adds that having Maximo for Utilities integrated into the ESRI spatial solution and their financial solutions provides a centralized solution.  Again leading to better utilization of the tax payer’s dollars and driving happy citizens.

Take a look at the full interview:

Dubai Airport is breaking the unsustainable linear growth of operational costs

Dubai Airport is the 2nd busiest airport for international traffic on path to be the busiest this year.  With assets growing exponentially from 375K today to a projected half million by 2015 they had a wake up call to change programs to break the corresponding linear growth in operational costs.  To this end I sat down with Lal Mathew, Head of Technical and Business Support at the Dubai Airport to discuss how Dubai Airport is breaking the unsustainable linear growth of operational costs.

In our interview Lal explains that growing operational costs linearly with the growth of assets was not a sustainable model for their desired profitability growth. They had to look at 4 key areas when selecting a maintenance application to help them manage their assets:

  • the assets
  • the processes
  • the people
  • the inventory

To this end they decided on Maximo Asset Management and have been using Maximo to help them achieve their objectives.  Since 2011 they have been holding costs flat and plan to do this until 2018.

One of the more unique challenges to the Dubai Airport was the vertical construction of the airport.  While “only” 13 square kilometers, the vertical construction represents 270 buildings and a total of 3.3M square meters with soon to be 500,000 assets in addition to the aviation assets.  No matter how you look at it, the sheer size required a mobile solution.  Lal tells us about how Maximo Mobile solutions are helping Dubai Airport to increase productivity and effectively manage the exponentially growing assets.  Remotely connecting technicians with the central Maximo solution for work orders, historical technical records on assets, etc.enables everyone to see and maintain the same real-time view of the data from anywhere.  It’s all about managing assets from anywhere to improve productivity.

Future plans at Dubai Airport include increased analytics integration with Maximo and moving to predictive maintenance.  All in an attempt to transform into a smarter airport.

View the full interview now:

To learn more about how IBM Maximo Asset Management and IBM Cognos can help transform your airport into a smarter airport watch this demonstration: