Off Highway & Industrial
Defining a Connected Equipment Strategy
In this revolutionary Industry 4.0 era, business leaders in the industrial, heavy equipment, mining, and oil & gas industries understand that creating and incorporating a strategy for equipment connectivity that addresses issues within individual machines and the broader operating environment is a crucial part of staying relevant in their marketplaces. A connected equipment strategy that includes advanced analytics to deliver actionable insights can greatly increase operational productivity, safety and reliability while enhancing customer experiences.
What Drives the Need for Connected Equipment?
For OEMs, and equipment owners and operators, key areas of concern often include unplanned downtime, operational and safety risks, corrective maintenance costs and gaining or maintaining market share.
Implementing a robust connected equipment strategy with advanced analytics capabilities offers a valuable solution, helping organizations replace costly, reactionary maintenance efforts with proven insights that enable preventive and predictive maintenance and prescriptive actions. In addition to reducing overall spend (both CapEx and OpEx), organizations also eliminate unexpected downtime, increase operational efficiencies and personnel safety, and improve product performance, thereby increasing competitiveness in the marketplace. Furthermore, connected equipment can lead the way to new digital product and service offerings or revenue models that were not previously possible.
Creating the Right Strategy for Your Organization
A connected equipment strategy must be aligned with an organization’s overall business goals as well as the unique needs of each team, and must include a well-paved roadmap that leads to meeting those goals. Failure to adhere to a unified strategy can lead to various groups across the business implementing equipment connectivity independently with varying end results and unnecessary spend scattered throughout disparate platforms.
The ideal foundation for any connected equipment strategy starts with clearly identifying the business problems that will be solved with a connectivity solution and then laying out cohesive short- and long-term organizational goals. Building this foundation begins with a clear definition of the roles and responsibilities across the organization as they relate to the connectivity solution, as well as a plan for implementation that takes each business function into account. Every role, from maintenance personnel to engineering, finance, and management must be briefed on the value of adding a connectivity strategy to the organization’s portfolio, as well as the part they will play in a successful implementation.
Breaking Down Potential Barriers to a New Business Model
The fear of moving away from traditional organizational structures and the timeworn path of “the way we’ve always done business” is a major barrier for organizations who could benefit from introducing connectivity into their operations. Known as cultural inertia, many companies feel it may be easier to stick to the status quo rather than switching to what may be seen as a complicated and time-consuming undertaking. Additional reasons companies are hesitant to embrace a connected equipment business model include:
- Security concerns
- Inability to define return on investment
- Lack of technological knowledge
- The hassle of migrating an older infrastructure to a modern one
Defeating these barriers can seem challenging, but understanding the many benefits of implementing a connected equipment strategy, including the transformational effect it can have on a business, makes the task more than worth the effort. Leveraging a partner with experience in the design, implementation and support of a connected equipment solution can provide the confidence to move forward as well as help achieve business results more quickly.
Connecting Equipment Adds Business and Customer Value
Building intelligence into industrial equipment assets and operations helps solve unique challenges for OEMs, and equipment owners and operators. OEMs gain new insights on product performance, identify potential equipment failures before they occur using predictive analytics, improve design with direct feedback from field use, provide better maintenance support to clients, and deliver enhanced products with superior market performance. Similarly, equipment owners and operators can enhance asset management programs, reduce unplanned downtime, increase operational safety and process efficiencies, and decrease operating expenses. Additionally, both groups can use connected equipment to establish innovative revenue models that fit the business needs of their end users who are rapidly adopting new technology.
Learn how executing a connected equipment strategy can help organizations to meet evolving business goals.
By Matt Winkler | February 16th, 2019