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Creating mobility is the integration of handheld technologies into the daily operations of a manufacturer. The advantage of handheld devices is they provide efficiency oriented operations the ability to communicate real or near real-time for both voice and data. In addition, devices such as the MC55 from Motorola will run Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) applications enabling manufacturers to further automate processes, boost productivity and reduce labor costs.

Why Mobile Handheld Technology

Here are the top 5 reasons to integrate mobile handheld technology as part of an EAM into manufacturing operations.

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    1. Raised visibility. With lower production orders resulting in less revenue, maintenance management can struggle to show value. Handheld devices raise visibility because they help provide a faster and more accurate response to maintenance problems. It is more difficult to cut the budget of a department that reacts quickly and efficiently to issues.
    2. Reduction on paper flow and paper waste. Handheld devices greatly reduce the paper flow normally associated with submitting work requests and executing work orders. By submitting work requests online, maintenance management can review and convert to a work order and schedule according to their decision making matrix. In addition to reducing the turnaround time for work requests, the status of work orders is now available real time. Management reports are just the touch of a button away.
    3. Downtime as a result of equipment failure is minimized. By using handhelds as part of an EAM system, maintenance becomes very orderly. The scheduling of preventive maintenance, inspections and work orders reduces the time spent on reactive (firefighting) work. Focus can be shifted to ancillary methodologies for improvement such as Six Sigma or electronic versions of KanBan.

“Kanban is a means through which Just in Time (JIT) is achieved…Kanban is a signaling system to trigger action.”

Source: Wikipedia

  1. Increased asset lifecycleFaster response times in conjunction with good preventive maintenance/inspection programs means that equipment operates at optimum levels more often. This increases the expected useful lifecycle of assets because the effect of normal wear and tear is minimized.
  2. Reduction in labor costs. A good rule of thumb is that proactive maintenance should be 80% or more of the work and reactive maintenance 20% or less. The efficiencies afforded by scheduling MRO enables greater schedule flexibility for handling emergency (unplanned repairs) resulting in a decrease in labor costs.

By using mobile handheld devices, plant operations adds some very powerful tools to their arsenal. Just as important, the use of mobile handheld devices magnifies the impact of using an EAM. Lastly, the user friendliness and professionalism associated with mobile devices will increase the adoption rates by plant staff. The higher the adoption rate the greater percentage of EAM/CMMS utilization occurs.

Tell us how you use mobile handheld devices to increase line uptime.

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