IBM Maximo Asset Management was officially launched by IBM in 2005 and has become one of the most widely used Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) platforms in the world. To get the most value out of the software’s powerful features, each company should create a thorough implementation plan. With official project management support and a Management of Change (MOC) process, the organization and IT department will be well structured and prepared for success.
Part of the reason for focusing so much effort on implementation is because this is the most critical phase for ensuring a good ROI for the Maximo deployment. An effective rollout will also prioritize the optimization of critical processes and allow for a smooth migration of data to the new platform. In this post, we’ll examine a few tips and best practices to keep in mind as you prepare for your own Maximo implementation. Your team’s productivity will depend on the amount of effort that goes into the planning stages and how many features, such as automation, your company is able to utilize.
1. Assemble an Implementation Team
Since the implementation phase is perhaps the most critical part of any Maximo deployment, it’s crucial to assemble the right team, including external consultants who can help you through the implementation process. Having a cross-functional implementation team can help manage a number of day-to-day priorities such as reviewing requirements, adjusting project schedules, and managing any issues that arise. Try to select members that really embrace the value that Maximo can offer your organization and understand the challenges involved with a project of this scope.
Involving a group of executive and middle-management stakeholders will also help ensure that communication is coordinated across all departments. Also, selecting a competent person to lead the implementation team as a single point-person is necessary for accountability. This leader can work together with the team members and the entire organization to define other important roles such as reviewers, approvers, power users, and end-users.
2. Define Crystal Clear Requirements
Attempting to implement any large software package without a clear set of requirements is a recipe for failure. If your IT department has already facilitated a review of EAM prior to selecting Maximo, it is likely you already have a good set of requirements defined. Now, it is necessary to take those requirements and make sure that the corresponding functions within Maximo are optimized. This can also have an impact on decisions related to future system extensions and integrations with third-party software. Some of the other important functional areas to review are:
- Inventory categories
- Company and site hierarchy
- Organizational structure
- Security and permissions
- Asset hierarchy
Since you’re reviewing your inventory and asset hierarchy, now is also a great time to implement facility asset management tags (if you haven’t done so already) to streamline data entry and ongoing documentation, which come into play in step 4. The most important thing to keep in mind when reviewing requirements prior to implementation is to ensure that your internal processes, Maximo platform, and integrated software systems are all aligned.
3. Perform Thorough System Testing
The typical corporate IT architecture is a complex array of different hardware and software systems. Once your Maximo software is installed, initiate a thorough testing regimen to verify compatibility across all your systems. Maximo will likely be interfacing with a number of other programs and will also be running on many different computer systems.
With more testing done upfront prior to a corporate-wide rollout, you’ll reduce the number of errors and issues encountered by your end-users. Software systems that are fully integrated and run smoothly provide an easier onboarding experience and less frustration for end-users, which contribute to job satisfaction and productivity.
4. Prioritize Data Entry and Migration
Migrating data over to Maximo is a necessary step in your implementation, and it is always a good idea to have this completed as early as possible. If your assets are appropriately tagged, you can use barcode scanners to streamline the data entry process significantly. Getting your data into the system will allow you to test the system backup and data retrieval features and prepare training materials for your employees. This is also a great time to allow your power users to interact with real data and help define parameters for user acceptance testing and corporate procedures.
5. Schedule Routine System Audits
Providing system access and training for Maximo will be one of the final steps in your corporate-wide implementation. Once the program is officially launched, you should already have a set schedule for routine system audits in place. This makes it easier for your IT department to leverage their MOC process and manage upgrades, patches, and other necessary system changes. These reviews are also an excellent touchpoint between support staff and system users, allowing everyone to take a step back and identify any issues.
IBM Maximo is one of the best EAM platforms on the market and has been implemented by thousands of companies worldwide. Proper planning during the entire process can help improve the chances of a successful deployment and reduce system downtime. The Maximo implementation tips recommended in this article are a great starting place for putting together a comprehensive plan and achieving world-class asset management capabilities for your facility.