“Manage the Program not the Data” Part One

Does your PdM program fail to achieve desired results?

If yes, you may be focusing too much on collecting data rather than what the data is telling you.

For every hour in the field collecting data, there has to be an appropriate amount of time analyzing the data to determine the condition of each asset.

One rule of thumb for example, on a vibration monitoring program, for every 60 minutes in the field collecting data, an additional 45 to 60 minutes is necessary for an experienced, certified individual to properly review, analyze and report the results.

Other PdM discipline have similar rule of thumb ratios, each requiring time in the office analyzing and reporting collected data.

One of the challenges to achieving the proper balance between data collection activities and the analysis and reporting is the initial training to properly collect data generally takes a small, manageable amount of time and is less technical in nature. Much of that time is spent learning how to use the instrument or collection device and proper collection methods.

Conversely the training required to understand, analyze and diagnose the collected data requires much more time (spanning multiple months/years, depending on the technology) and is appreciably more technical.

In addition to the analysis of the raw data, trends and historical patterns develop over time giving program managers keys to adding reliability and precision to the existing maintenance efforts.

Although data collection and analysis are important integral part of the PdM program, the resulting historical patterns are key to the stakeholder who are required to improve overall reliability.