Equipment World

December 2017

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Page 38 of 75 | December 2017 39 looks at what the technician sees and guides the technician. This allows fleet managers to send less experienced technicians into the field, knowing they have a real-time backup for instructions and advice. Systems and devices When evaluating a maintenance software package, one of the first decisions you'll have to make is about the hard- ware – the tablet or device on which the information is recorded, says Giometti. The options include: • A device for each piece of equipment. This is a good fit for small fleets, but gets expensive for bigger ones. Misplacement of the device is unlikely since it stays with the machine. • A device for each em- ployee. The device can be an employee's per- sonal phone or a tablet issued by the company. Using personal phones is easy, but companies are required to reimburse em- ployees for a percentage of their monthly bills. Still it can be less expensive than buying a dedicated device for every technician or mechanic. Company- issued tablets can be ex- pensive and require some tracking as an asset. • One device for everybody to share. This may be the least expensive option, but depending on just one de- vice for multiple employ- ees and equipment can be problematic. Giometti says he rarely sees companies adopt this option. The big challenge As with any major systems change, the biggest chal- lenge is often selling the idea to the executive suite and the employees under your supervision. Giometti lists four suggestions for making this happen: 1. Make sure you know what is available on the market. Survey all electronic inspection options to find the best fit. Ask questions and understand the potential ROI for your business. 2. Have a plan to get internal cham- pions and early adopters on board. You don't have to know every- thing. You know equipment, you know your business. Get some millennials to help you in the tran- sition. Own it and then put a team around you. This is not about technology; it's about mindset. 3. The champions who work with you on the pilot should encourage employees to buy into the technology by shar- ing its benefits. 4. Reward top performers. Gamification techniques of- fer a lot of room for cre- ativity in coming up with reward programs. The more data you collect in your sys- tem the more ideas you can think up to help employees achieve companywide goals. Examples include reward- ing people for the number or percentage of inspections completed. You can also use the data to establish perfor- mance bonuses. Small fleet solutions If there is a negative to implementing a paperless shop management system, it is the cost and the initial ROI. Software isn't free, and training and adoption can take time and resources. But the situation is not as daunting as it may seem, es- pecially for contractors with small fleets. At its simplest, you can start recording all your inspections, processes and timelines on an Excel spreadsheet or Google Docs, says Giometti. These don't have the interoperability of most sophisticated pro- grams. You cannot mine the data for insights or export the data into an ERP pro- gram, but they are easy to share. Regular reports become part of a machine's permanent file, making it easy to determine who did what repair or when a machine is due for a PM. Photos and comments add a layer of richness to the data that help improve machine maintenance and monitoring.

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