There is so much data available to us in today’s world. Smart homes, smart thermostats, smart light bulbs, everything is “smart.” If you went out and bought one of the smart devices, would you use it? Or would you use it just like your previous “non-smart” thermostat? If you are going to pay a premium for the device, you most likely will use some of the new features on it.
What does it give you? Access to data. Know if your garage door is open or not, from another state. Close it with a bush of a button if you left it open. See where the temperature is set in your home, change it if you are not happy with the settings, from another country! These all allow you to access data that is important to you and then make a decision based on that data.
Industry is moving towards smart devices very quickly. Many allow you live and real-time access to data and analytics in order to make decisions. The question this article poses is, will you listen to them?
Before the Internet of Things (IoT) or Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) many maintenance and reliability teams had tremendous amounts of data. No, most of the time it wasn’t “live data”, it was delayed in most cases due to traditional data transfer and reporting times. However, quite a bit of data was there.
What types of data have traditionally been available?
- Vibration Route Data & Reports
- Thermography Route Data & Reports
- Ultrasound Air Leak, Steam Trap, or Bearing Data & Reports
- Electrical Testing Data & Reports (PdMA, All Test Pro, SKF Baker, etc.)
- Temperature Data Trending (Via RTD’s, Thermocouples, etc.)
- Maintenance Work order histories (Via CMMS Systems)
- Vendor repair histories (Via reports)
- Various other technologies
All of these technologies, and their associated data was not invented yesterday, it has been around for years, if not decades. So….. the question is, were you using these technologies? Were you using the data to make decisions?
I cannot tell you how many countless clients we have had over the years who have all of these technologies in place, but they were not listening to the data and continued to make decisions based on time-based maintenance or even worse, run-to-failure maintenance.
The internet of things (IoT) is not going to change the data itself. It may report the data to you quickly, in an easier to understand format, and possibly even more precisely, but it will not respond for you. That comes down to you reviewing the data and making a decision.
It doesn’t matter if you have a smart plant or a traditional plant, either-way YOU must act on the maintenance data that you have in order to make decisions. If you do not, what’s the point of even having the data?