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Perspectives on the e-Maintenance Transition

Perspectives on the e-Maintenance Transition

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Published by Jan
Web and wireless enabled information systems are becoming the backbone of the knowledge society. For complex electromechanical and software- intensive equipment, the transition to e-
maintenance involves original equipment manufacturers, the owners and operators of
industrial facilities, and their service providers. Narrowly scoped technological and intra-organisational approaches fail to overcome the slow deployment of ICT in maintenance and repair processes. Relying on experience and a closer analysis of this problem in the context of an industry-led e-maintenance project, this paper describes an acceleration approach based on model-reuse within e-maintenance system decision and development methods. It is
an option to elaborate this approach as part of an institutional initiative.
Web and wireless enabled information systems are becoming the backbone of the knowledge society. For complex electromechanical and software- intensive equipment, the transition to e-
maintenance involves original equipment manufacturers, the owners and operators of
industrial facilities, and their service providers. Narrowly scoped technological and intra-organisational approaches fail to overcome the slow deployment of ICT in maintenance and repair processes. Relying on experience and a closer analysis of this problem in the context of an industry-led e-maintenance project, this paper describes an acceleration approach based on model-reuse within e-maintenance system decision and development methods. It is
an option to elaborate this approach as part of an institutional initiative.

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 Expanding the Knowledge Economy: Issues, Applications, Case StudiesPaul Cunningham and Miriam Cunningham (Eds) IOS Press, 2007 Amsterdam ISBN 978-1-58603-801-4
 
Copyright © 2007 The Authors
Perspectives on the e-Maintenance Transition
Jan GOOSSENAERTS
1
, Robbert VAN LEIJSEN
2
, Arjan GELDERBLOM
31
 Information Systems, Dept. of Technology Management, Eindhoven University of Technology, PO Box 513, Paviljoen D12, NL-5600 MB Eindhoven, NetherlandsTel: +31 40 247 2062, Fax: +31 40 243 2612, Email: j.b.m.goossenaerts@.tue.nl 
2
 Assembléon Netherlands B.V., De Run 1110, NL-5503 LA Veldhoven, the Netherlands,Tel. +31 (0) 40 27 97542, Fax. +31 (0) 40 27 23826, Email: Robbert.van.Leijsen@philips.com 
3
Océ Technologies B.V., NetherlandsTel +31 77 359 4857, Email:arjan.gelderblom@oce.com 
Abstract:
Web and wireless enabled information systems are becoming the backbone of the knowledge society. For complex electromechanical and software-intensive equipment, the transition to e-maintenance involves original equipmentmanufacturers, the owners and operators of industrial facilities, and their service providers. Narrowly scoped technological and intra-organisational approaches fail toovercome the slow deployment of ICT in maintenance and repair processes. Relyingon experience and a closer analysis of this problem in the context of an industry-lede-maintenance project, this paper describes an acceleration approach based onmodel-reuse within e-maintenance system decision and development methods. It isan option to elaborate this approach as part of an institutional initiative.
1. Introduction
Manufacturing foresight studies [1] agree that Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM)must widen their business focus: from designing and selling physical products to supplyinga system of products and services, capable of fulfilling users' demands all over the world.For most of these OEM the service business is related to the maintenance of the equipment.The European Federation of National Maintenance Societies defines maintenance as: “thecombination of all technical, administrative, and managerial actions during the lifecycle of an item intended to retain or restore it to a state in which it can perform its requiredfunction”. Effective maintenance and repair is critical to many operations, since it extendsequipment lifetime and improves equipment availability.Traditional service delivery methods for complex electromechanical and software-intensive machines are becoming difficult and expensive for OEM and their customers.Today, the Internet enables e-maintenance as a tool to provide equipment supplier's expertswith the ability to remotely link to factory's equipment. This allows for remote setup,control, configuration, diagnosis, repair and improvement of the equipment [2]. Reflectinga broader perspective on maintenance and repair services, [3] states: “E-maintenance provides companies with predictive intelligence tools, to monitor their assets (equipment, products, process etc.) through Internet or wireless communication systems to prevent themfrom unexpected breakdown. From a broader and more workflow specific point of view, e-maintenance can be interpreted as a maintenance management process covered by state of the art information and communication technology”.In spite of a firm expectation that e-maintenance can decrease service costs and cost of ownership, and enable new OEM business and new software engineering business [4],OEM are struggling with articulating and implementing their e-maintenance service proposition:
 Many companies have tried to develop Industrial Services to create newbusiness with customers but many of them have failed. In many cases, customers have not 
 
Copyright © 2007 The Authors
valued the proposed service models because of the lack of added value to current co-operation between supplier and customer 
[5]
.
” On the technology side, the ITEAPROTEUS project has made contributions in the area of architecture and basic concepts of an integration platform for creating distributed maintenance systems [6]. A significantnumber of industry-led initiatives are working at open specifications as pillars of animproved business environment. As part of the International SEMATECH ManufacturingInitiative (ISMI), the e-Diagnostics guidebook provides guidelines and requirements for implementing an e-Diagnostics system within a semiconductor factory [7]. For the MRO(Maintenance, Repair and Operations) market participants, Machinery InformationManagement Open Systems Alliance (MIMOSA) is developing and promoting open protocol standards to overcome the problems of equipment information scattered amongseparate information systems. Within ISO several initiatives give results relevant for achieving enterprise interoperability during the equipment in-use lifecycle phase. Muchknowledge is available from the scientific world [8, 9]. Yet, this knowledge is ill packagedfor low-hurdle application in the design and implementation of e-maintenance solutions.Given these challenges and advances, the TOAST project objective was to pilotdemonstrate the value proposition and feasibility of e-maintenance and remote services.The project ran from September 1
st
, 2005 to October 31
st
, 2006 and was funded by theBrabantse Ontwikkelingsmaatschappij, a regional funding organisation. The partners werePhilips TASS, Océ, Assembléon, Sioux, and TU/e. For the industrial participants, the mainobjective of the project was to demonstrate that remote monitoring of equipment couldcontribute to availability gains for the customer and to service cost reductions for the OEM.An additional objective was to gain experience with customer perceptions, acceptation bythe service engineers in the field and technical aspects such as reliability, availability andsecurity of the Internet connections.Overall TOAST achieved its industrial objectives. Availability gains and costreductions that were achieved in particular situations have contributed to a higher priorityfor remote services. The feasibility of such services in the regular business, and a staircasemodel for e-services have contributed to a broader support with decision makers. Thestaircase model instantiates the ISMI framework for application of e-maintenancetechnology in failure-based and condition-based maintenance [7].Yet, field service processes are often outside the reach of systematic measurements of their operational performance or outcomes. There is a lack of information, and gettingreliable information on a broad range of indicators often is expensive. Moreover ICT offersan increasing range of options to improve the service portfolio. This implies a complexresponse, ranging from enacting a change management program, over definition of service products, to making better use of information resources. In a market characterized byimmature standards and lack of near-peer success stories, the OEM risks burning assets.Moreover, standards, reference architectures, KPI trees etc., are imitable (strategic)artefacts, in which the OEM must not invest (much) more than competitors. An interactive planning approach involving suppliers, customers and partners, the following of influentialadopters, and the conducting of technological experiments [10] would be an option, yet theservices' closeness to the equipment makes it risky to engage in intensive exchanges withcustomers, service providers and competitors. Concerns of leaking knowledge and(intellectual) property, confidentiality and free-riding, and the weak enforceability of therelated institutional principles, all contribute to a broad prisoner's dilemma.These circumstances and the inter-organisational nature of the e-maintenance solutionshave underscored the need for refined and efficient e-maintenance system decision,development and implementation methods. This paper proposes methods and supportingmodels aimed at overcoming the broad prisoner's dilemma in the e-maintenance transition.The validity of these methods and models has been ascertained by basing them on the
 
legacy regarding methodology and information systems development and implementation,and by evaluating their joint use at the mental level of positivistic reasoning [11]. As yet,they have not been tested in industrial service systems.
2. Concerted Regulative Cycles for Accelerated e-Transitions
Where research should lead to problem-solving or practical interventions, there is often aneed for the process of multi-methodology, that is, combining together several methods inan intervention [12]. Originating in psychological practice, the regulative cycle [13] has been extensively applied also as a methodology of practice, geared towards the "interested"regulation of the behaviour of groups or organizations in the desired direction. Where principals are engaged with the operations and improvement of a work system such as a plant, a hospital or a service system, the cycle includes the following activities: evaluation(of system operations with respect to an instrument or via benchmarking), problemidentification (selection from a problem mess), diagnosis (of the problem situation – analysis), plan of action (design), and intervention (implementation). This last step isfollowed by evaluation to close the cycle. In the evaluation activity it is convenient to havean instrument to compare the performance or structure of the work system. The referencefab methodology [14] uses a reference model for systematic target setting on high level performance indicators. The model obtained from peer intelligence is translated into a sitespecific reference model with targets for the actual site work system. The translationconsiders factor costs, volumes and complexity of technologies.
real sitework system
site specificreference modelsProblemIdentificationAnalysis anddiagnosisInterventionImplementationPlan of actionDesignEvaluation/ Monitoring
reference model
 TranslationPeer Intelligence(Market, Science,Roadmap,Benchmarking,..)Problem/GapRegister
 
Figure 1: Regulative Cycle Extended with Reference Models
As e-maintenance implementation problems involve the ICT-reliant work systems of multiple enterprises including the OEM and its customers, some form of concertation of their regulative cycles is recommended. Where benefits of model-based development [15]are pursued, sharing model repositories can help reduce common project risks [16]. Wherea trend to many-to-many relationships is observed [17], lock-in strategies by softwarevendors, and free-rider attitudes and prisoner's dilemma by OEM and their customers maydelay achieving solution flexibility, perpetual service-IT alignment, as well as affordabledevelopment and implementation costs. A complicating factor in deciding on investmentsin the maintenance value chain is the imitable nature of the standards, architectures,contracts and services that must be deployed. In economic theory, the relevant game is the public good game, a multi-player variant of the prisoner's dilemma [18].
Copyright © 2007 The Authors

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