The change in maintenance is fast and getting faster all the time. Technology is becoming more complex. Data has turned from a trickle into a tidal wave. Using software isn’t enough anymore—all your systems have to be connected and able to talk to each other. At Fiix, we often refer to this connectivity as an ecosystem, where you have things working together and using the best tool for the job. Everything in your organization has to be tied together, from different assets to entire departments.
Trying to keep up with this change can be overwhelming. To help you on your journey, we’re going to review the top three most common CMMS integrations, how they work, and their benefits, and we’re also going to review how Fiix’s CMMS integrations can solve common maintenance challenges.
Top three CMMS integrations
Now that you understand CMMS integrations, reviewing the most common types is important. SCADA, ERP, PLCs, and sensors are all systems used in various industries to manage different aspects of operations. Here’s an explanation of each, along with their connections and how they work:
1. SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition):
- SCADA is a control system used to monitor and control industrial processes and infrastructure, such as manufacturing, energy, and utilities. It gathers real-time data from sensors and devices.
- Benefits of SCADA include remote monitoring, control of processes, early fault detection, and data visualization for decision-making.
- How it works: SCADA systems collect data from sensors and equipment, display it in a central location, and allow operators to control processes, set alarms, and analyze data in real-time.
2. ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning):
- ERP is a comprehensive software system used to manage and integrate various business processes, including finance, HR, inventory, production, and sales. It provides a unified view of an organization’s data.
- Benefits of ERP include improved efficiency, streamlined processes, data accuracy, better decision-making, and a single source of truth for data.
- How it works: ERP systems integrate data and processes across various departments and functions, providing a holistic view of an organization’s operations.
3. PLC (Programmable Logic Controller):
- PLC is a hardware device used in industrial automation to control machinery and processes. It’s programmed to execute specific tasks and control equipment.
- Benefits of PLCs include real-time control, reliability, scalability, and the ability to perform complex automation tasks.
- How it works: PLCs receive input from sensors and execute control logic based on programmed instructions. They ensure machinery and processes operate as intended.
- Sensors operate by converting physical stimuli into electrical signals. These signals are then processed to provide meaningful data about the environment or the state of machinery.
- Benefits of sensors include data on temperature, pressure, humidity, and other variables, enabling swift decision-making.
- How it works: These devices detect various physical parameters and relay crucial information for monitoring and controlling industrial processes.
Now, let’s discuss the connections between these systems with a CMMS:
- CMMS to SCADA: CMMS and SCADA can be integrated to enhance maintenance and monitoring in industrial settings. CMMS helps schedule and document maintenance tasks, while SCADA provides real-time data on equipment and processes. When integrated, maintenance teams can use SCADA data to prioritize maintenance based on equipment conditions and performance.
- CMMS to ERP: Integration between CMMS and ERP systems helps organizations manage maintenance and financial aspects more effectively. CMMS provides maintenance-related data to ERP, enabling better cost tracking, budgeting, and procurement. This integration ensures that maintenance activities are aligned with overall business objectives.
- CMMS to PLC: PLCs can feed data from machines and equipment to a CMMS using a third-party application like MAJiK.
- Sensors to CMMS: The integration of CMMS with sensors allows organizations to move from reactive to proactive maintenance strategies. By leveraging real-time data, CMMS enhances the accuracy of maintenance planning, reduces downtime, and contributes to the overall efficiency and reliability of industrial operations. This data-driven approach ensures that maintenance activities are performed precisely when needed, optimizing resource utilization and extending the lifespan of critical assets.
All three integrations can work together to streamline operations and maintenance processes, improve data accuracy, reduce downtime, and enhance decision-making. Integrating these systems can provide a more holistic view of an organization’s operations and help optimize processes across different departments, bringing us to our next point concerning Fiix CMMS.
Trying to keep up with the pace of change can be overwhelming, like trying to jump in the open window of a speeding car. Fiix’s CMMS integrations are here to solve all that.
Four ways to use Fiix CMMS integrations
There’s software to manage every part of the business, from maintenance to sales. Fiix’s Integration Hub builds connections for you, so you can enjoy the benefits of connecting systems without spending weeks untangling complicated technical requirements. It does this by linking the CMMS software to every other piece of technology and equipment your organization needs to thrive now and in the future.
These systems communicate with each other so you can collaborate better, improve asset performance, manage work, and make data-driven decisions. Here’s three ways you can use Fiix CMMS integrations to solve common maintenance challenges:
1. Optimize preventive maintenance, establish condition-based maintenance, and lean toward predictive maintenance
How it works: Sensors and meters track actual equipment usage, such as run hours and mileage, as well as real-time equipment conditions, such as vibration, temperature, and pressure. When one of these devices detects an anomaly, it will communicate with your Fiix CMMS and automatically trigger a work order for that asset. For example, a sensor might recognize that the temperature of the motor has passed a certain threshold, or a SCADA system may identify that the motor has been running for a certain number of hours. This information is instantly communicated to your CMMS, which triggers a work order.
Why it matters: Your Fiix CMMS can now communicate with virtually any production system, including PLCs, SCADA systems, MES software, and industrial sensors. This has three main benefits—better maintenance scheduling, more efficient use of resources, and less downtime. Connecting to these systems eliminates the uncertainty of manual readings or observations, and ensures maintenance is only done when necessary. Fewer hours, parts, and dollars are used. Also, when potential failure is caught early, equipment can spend more time up and running instead of being broken and idle, and that’s where something like Asset Risk Predictor can come into place.
2. Connect with ERP systems
How it works: ERP software organizes all the different elements of a business, like inventory, accounting, sales, and more, into one system. This creates a single source of information for the entire company while streamlining processes for everyone. Plugging your Fiix CMMS into an ERP enables you to see data from every part of the organization, and the rest of the organization can see relevant information from the maintenance team.
Why it matters: It allows you to see the bigger picture and make smarter, data-driven decisions. Maintenance success often relies on information and action from other departments. For example, inventory and finance play a role in making sure spare parts are available at the right time, place, and price. An ERP connects all these departments and streamlines the process of purchasing, organizing and using spare parts. The result is improved asset performance, fewer unnecessary costs, less wasted time, and more accurate data.
The Business Leader’s Guide to Digital Transformation in Maintenance
3. Integrate Fiix data with a central BI database
How it works: Many businesses use BI tools and dashboards, and maintenance teams are no exception. You can send maintenance data from Fiix to your analytics tools to increase visibility and make more informed decisions.
Why it matters: You’re giving company wide visibility into data. So, if your finance team or operations team needs to take a look at your data, it’s all integrated into a coherent ecosystem.
4. Optimize your integrations with SSO
How it works: Single-Sign-On (SSO) integration for CMMS is a game-changer. This integration unifies user authentication.
Why it matters: It breaks down departmental silos and provides quick access and visibility into maintenance data. This integration simplifies access, promotes less administration, and adds more security.
Unlock the full potential of your maintenance management
Maximizing the capabilities of a CMMS requires more than just standalone operation in a world of diverse software solutions. CMMS integrations open the door to a realm of possibilities, connecting your maintenance operations to a world of potential benefits. Whether you’re looking to implement condition-based maintenance, seamlessly integrate your CMMS into the broader digital landscape of your organization, or establish a comprehensive analytics platform for your maintenance data, you’re not alone on your maintenance journey.