Working globally with CMMS
Having one platform for an international network improves business performance.
By Mary Lou Jay, as seen in Retail Store Maintenance magazine, September 2016
BP Global Alliance began its move toward a standardized international CMMS platform for its retail stores two years ago. Earlier this year, working with Urgent Technology on eMaintenance+, a new CMMS platform developed to meet the demands of international customers, BP completed the changeover.
“We now have one common platform in 12 countries that everyone uses regardless of currency, location or language,” said Graeme Warnell, BP Project Manager, eProjects.
Having individualized systems in each country caused many problems. “There were lots of black holes on data and processes. It was nearly impossible to benchmark anything because everybody collected their data in a different way. We were never getting quality data which we could compare having all these different systems across Europe,” Warnell continued.
“In today’s data-driven environment, being able to leverage real-time data and analytics for benchmarking across countries is key to improving business performance, identifying best practices and elevating FM’s value to executives,” said Jesse Klebba, CEO, Urgent Technology.
“For example, by drawing data from a standardized international CMMS, an organization can now, within seconds, compare service provider performance, or evaluate site maintenance spend by country or region.”
“Until you have an international CMMS that supports a unified workflow and dataset, it is nearly impossible to benchmark across your organization.”
“There are also cost drawbacks from a technical perspective when there’s no unified CMMS platform”, Klebba added.
“There will typically be in-country infrastructure costs, software licensing and support resources. As a result, there’s a real opportunity to identify cost savings and efficiencies by leveraging a single platform that can support your requirements on a global scale.”
While standardization is very important, Klebba said that an international CMMS should also offer flexibility.
“You need to be able to operate locally. If a specific country or region operates slightly differently, your CMMS should support that with a configurable workflow. However, what is key is that your core data is captured in a common format for comparison purposes.”
In many respects, the business drivers for choosing an international system are the same as they would be for choosing a one-country system. Warnell identified key elements for BP:
- Demanding the latest technologies, including access to the platform via mobile devices, ensures the organisation’s current and future needs are met. Ease of implementation and seamless integration with other customer systems were also key.
- Making sure that the system would be easy to implement for users, including its stores, head office and contracting firms – approximately 30,000 global users. “Our end users are the site operators and service providers performing the repairs,” said Warnell. “Having a system they can interact with, that’s very easy to use in their local language, is essential to ensuring adoption”.
- Defining which company department would own the system and developing a core team to oversee it. “You’ve got to have a global leader, the champion of the product”, added Warnell.
- Managing FM data. Business intelligence and reporting capabilities to enable the FM team to focus on continuous improvement.
Companies adopting an international CMMS must take into account cultural differences and people’s reluctance to change.
“There was a lot of fear out there when we said we were doing an international rollout of eMaintenance+, but we engaged with all the stakeholders in plenty of time. The biggest thing was selling the system; as soon as the local people had bought in, it became easier to implement,” Warnell said.
To find out more about the software, visit our eMaintenance+ page,
or give us a call on +44 (0) 1908 391160