Current economic conditions make service profitability and asset longevity more important than ever. How can service organizations leverage the IoT to transform service and improve service performance and profitability? This Buyer’s Guide offers seven ways that can help companies get started or expand on early efforts, apply lessons learned from initial projects, and drive repeatable value that they can grow over time.
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For related research, view our Improve Service with Equipment Monitoring infographic.
Table of Contents
- Improving Service Profitability with Condition Monitoring
- Begin the Condition Based Monitoring Journey
- Set Your Business Targets
- Access Equipment and Equipment Data
- Communicate with Equipment
- Transform Data to Increase Value
- Analyze Data to Create Service Intelligence
- Share Actionable Service Information
- Implementation and Adoption
- Selecting a Strategic Partner
- Next Steps
- Buyer’s Guide Checklist
Condition Based Monitoring Drives Improvements
IoT Condition Based Monitoring Opportunities
Monitoring machines using the IoT offers significant business value including increased quality, manufacturing throughput, and service performance. Of these opportunities, transforming service has become a proven way to improve equipment performance and profitability in the field and in the factory.
Service transformation is a good target because service organizations have increased their maturity in the last decade and are now more sophisticated and data-driven. In addition, IoT platforms are now available to ensure companies get beyond a “proof of concept” to improve performance and profitability at scale. And as Dr. Yuri Hovanski, Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Brigham Young University (BYU), explains, “Companies have been using predictive maintenance for decades. It’s not new, but the cost to deploy it 20 years ago was phenomenally expensive.” The barriers to adopt these platforms continue to drop as solution providers offer more configurable, predefined applications that are faster and less expensive to implement.
Improving Service Profitability with Condition Monitoring
Service is a Proven Value Driver
The most common way that companies gain tangible performance gains from IoT is through improved service. The IoT lets companies transform service to generate more – and more profitable – service revenue. They do this by moving from reactive to proactive to predictive service. Service is an excellent opportunity to leverage advanced technologies like AI, machine learning, and big data analytics. The most common first step is reducing the cost of service through remote, condition based monitoring and is within reach for most companies. In addition, companies can improve performance through new service delivery processes like remote service.
Use this Guide to Achieve Results
This guide shares the tangible, practical steps companies can take to improve service through IoT condition based monitoring, how IoT platforms help deliver value, and how they can increase benefits with increased maturity. Then, the buyer’s guide focuses on the essential needs companies must consider to ensure a successful initiative. The requirements are intended to help companies frame their search process and efficiently find the right solution. The checklists go beyond software functionality to cover factors important to implementation, adoption, partner choice, and more. These are the factors that drive long-term business success from an IoT initiative.
Begin the Condition Based Monitoring Journey
Start with the Basics
Before looking at requirements, it’s critical to understand that improving service profitability is a journey. Condition based monitoring value starts with the basics of connecting equipment and collecting data. The first step in many companies’ journey is simply accessing equipment to understand its current location and status. Then, they can expand their benefits by gathering more complete machine data feeds to analyze performance metrics. “We learned you can’t just magically get to predictivity. You have to grow data maturity from descriptive to predictive to prescriptive. But you can get far more value from asset monitoring right away than you thought possible just based on alerts for above or below thresholds,” shares Todd Earls, VP IT for Digital Design and Manufacturing at Eaton.
Grow Maturity over Time
Expanding on the basics, companies can adopt advanced analytics to gain service intelligence to improve service operations by moving through increasing maturity levels.
For example, one tangible objective is to recognize that there’s a problem before the customer or operator does. The key is to identify an issue, or a potential issue, in time to intervene to reduce the severity and impact of the problem.
Grow Beyond Issue Identification to Remote Service
It’s important to get started and then continuously improve over time. Then, as companies increase their service maturity, they can extend the value by remotely servicing equipment to further increase uptime and service margins.
Recognize the Potential
Leveraging the IoT can help companies improve service for themselves and their customers by reducing cost and transitioning to proactive and predictive service. Condition based monitoring allows companies to identify and resolve issues remotely, providing faster service and increased uptime for the customer while reducing the cost of truck rolls and putting service technicians on site. It can go beyond cost savings to improve sustainability or create new revenue from paid upgrades or remotely “unlocking” enhanced capabilities via a subscription.
Now, more than ever, it’s critical to get started. Challenging financial markets make service profitability and increased asset lifecycles strategic. Service transformation has gone beyond the early adopters and is now becoming necessary to compete. Companies have to avoid “paralysis through analysis” and make tangible progress. As Danny Jackson of Autoliv advises, “Done is better than perfect, start doing some things. We lost some time trying to do it perfectly, then made more progress by doing things and learning from them.”
Adopt a Pragmatic Approach
Companies have to get started, but they shouldn’t try to accomplish everything at once. Instead, it’s essential to adopt an incremental approach. Companies can organize their service and machine monitoring efforts in small, manageable, incremental “sprints” that will result in broader, transformational value. Each effort should build on the prior one. Companies should create a framework as they solve the first problem, focusing on operationalizing their capabilities and building repeatable solutions.
Extend the Value
As companies become more experienced and data-centric, they can increase the maturity of their service applications and analytics. They can apply results in their own facilities to improve how they service smart products at customer locations. They can extend to other use cases such as customer self-service, remote maintenance, predicting yield, optimizing manufacturing processes, predicting scrap/rework, or reducing process variability. There is a lot of value available across the enterprise and the value chain in addition to improving service.
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