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The Most Comprehensive and Integrated Enterprise Asset Maintenance Management Program

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Having already won the “Calstar” award from OSHA, the Board of Directors at Eastern Municipal Water District, desired their organization to be a “world class” O&M organization that is competitive and cost effective. To achieve this, they directed their attention at the core business, which is operating and treating wastewater and water and maintaining their facilities to protect the safety and health of the public.

EMWD is similar to other organizations that had functions compartmentalized with the resultant inefficiencies. To get a handle on the business and working practices of the organization, an Asset Management and Maintenance Management Consultant conducted a fully comprehensive study of the O&M department which was accepted by the executive management, and the Leadership Team, and work began starting March 2000 to proceed with the Enterprise Asset Maintenance Management Business Process Improvement program spearheaded by the O&M group, but which affected the entire business practice for the EMWD. The areas addressed by the study included asset management and life cycle replacement, warehouse and inventory control, purchasing, corrective maintenance and its planning and scheduling, preventive maintenance, predictive maintenance, proactive maintenance, finance and charge accounts, information systems and information management, engineering, organizational and functional integration, structural changes, and reports. The study brought out many organizational and technological issues in detail, using asset management as the cornerstone.

A very comprehensive asset management program is under way for the water distribution, wastewater collection and reclamation treatment plant facilities. Asset structuring, data gathering and data input is progressing with the creation of a CMMS business group that will assist EMWD with the management of this process. Planner/schedulers have been created along with the reorientation of the culture within all departments. At the same time, the Warehousing and Purchasing Departments are being reorganized to refocus their role on customer service. Both centralized and decentralized issues are being addressed with respect to the Reclamation Facilities, which are spread out over a wide area in the District. Work management under this context and the support services required to keep the primary functions operating at an optimum level, are underway. A CMMS has been purchased as a tool to facilitate the data and information management in keeping with the practices outlined.

Already EMWD has achieved many savings and benefits, though the implementation program is still 2 years from completion. The master plan that is being adopted will be a standard in the industry when all facets of the O&M departmental functions and the support functions are fully implemented. The cost benefit analysis and the expected tangible and intangible benefits will make this organization a very competitive organization.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2002-01-01

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