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CMMS - GIS interface

  • 1.  CMMS - GIS interface

    Posted 23 October 2013 21:04
    Our organization has several Computerized Maintenance Management Systems (CMMS), none of which interface with our GIS system. For several years I have been a protagonist re the importance of interface capability (if not the development of an integrated Enterprise Asset Management System) and the standardization to one, at most two, CMMSs.
    I am looking for: words of encouragement/support, reasons, and/or a sales pitch to inform, educated and convince our leadership that this is an important if not critical capability that we require to be able us to store, evaluate, and present data.

    All comments welcome!
    Thanks for your help

    Barry Buchanan
    Utility Planning Snr. Project Manager
    City of Salem
    Salem OR USA

    Pro Cert 2

  • 2.  RE:CMMS - GIS interface

    Posted 25 October 2013 04:33
    Hi Barry,

    I would rate the alliance between your CMMS and GIS as one of the single most high-value activities that you could undertake to leverage your asset management spend.  The advantages of exposing asset data as a GIS driven common operating picture include; accurate identification, reduction of duplicates, easier discovery of omissions and ultimately more accurate stocktakes and accounting.  I have come to believe that "nobody cares about data they can't see", and GIS is a great way to let them see.

    Redland City Council has used Maximo as its CMMS for some years now and we have applied quite a bit of thought and effort into the strategic information alliance and the practical integration between it and the GIS.   They started life independently and we tried a number of approaches to bring them together.  The first of these was to make the GIS the "source of truth" system, and force data into the asset system.  There were a lot of clunky synchronisation issues, and it was only a viable approach for assets that were captured spatially (not all of them were financially significant enough to warrant this).   Eventually when we were satisfied that we had acceptable convergance between systems, we switched to the approach that the CMMS would be the source of truth for assets and asset finacials, and the GIS would be the source of truth for geometry.

    This new approach raised the issue of how to capture the data spatially, but feed it to the CMMS.  We solved this issue by building a web-method in front of Maximo to feed info into and return the asset number.  This is invoked by a GIS extension that stores the asset number in the GIS feature that created the asset.  The asset is visible to all users and financial officers from that time on for the whole lifecycle.  We then let the CMMS manage the asset and pull the data back out to join the GIS feature in a published data set whenever we want to present it through mapping.

    Most importantly, we have chosen not to pursue expensive and complicated system integrations, just a few carefully thought out touch points and reporting to capture exceptions.  Most of the effort has gone into aligning the data, and building the human relationships to make it happen.  As usual, software is not the silver bullet, but simple cooperation between clever human beings.

    Check out our free external mapping at  .  After accepting the disclaimer, switch to "Asset Mapping" using the dropdown and zoom in to check out the buried infrastructure.  This application is a bit old and slow now and we are building a better one, but the information will be the same marriage of GIS and CMMS data that fuels this one.

    Best regards

    Ian Read
    Redland City Council


    Pro Cert 2

  • 3.  RE:CMMS - GIS interface

    Posted 28 October 2013 10:20
    Hi Barry,
    I agree with Ian's comments, especially in regards to integration development history.
    From a maintenance management perspective, one of the biggest advantages of GIS integration is demonstrating to the customers (asset users) what was inspected, what defects were raised and what was fixed.  The old adage of a picture is worth a thousand words applies.

    For customer service, the GIS can aid to identify the correct asset to raise a complaint against, identify if a defect / repair works has already been raised and assist in reposnding to customers as to the status of works. Again a picture is much easier to relate to than a long list of assets.

    For asset inspectors, GIS representation of inspection schedules, inspection progress and defects previously identified and not yet rectified can help to coodrinate the team, ensure all assets have been inspected and visually confirm to managers that all assets are being regularly inspected.  In our system you can see the daily progress of the inspectors for the group of assets due to be inspected in the current month, without running reports. Coupling a mobile GIS with GPS and inspection templates is a massive help and reduces the ammount of paper moving around.  With mobile device apps (with GIS in app to help locate jobs and using GPS in device), you have the potential to complete the maintenance cycle without any paper being generated, and without having to spend big $$ on hardware for field crews.

    As a future point, if asset defects are accurately located spatially, then statistical analysis of failures can lead to identification of causal effects.  Field officers can see a series of defects and relate them to a common cause, but transfering this knowledge to the financial decision makers who do not see the evidence can be difficult.  For example a series of potholes over a number of years can provide evidence of a poorly compacted service trench, leaking pipe joint, or similar, all readily identifiable in the field, but without spatial locations, cannot be differentiated in a report from a different road segment with the same number of potholes failing due to poor materials.  similar number of defects/repair costs, different longer term fixes.

    Kind Regards,

    Bruce Eaton
    GIS Coordinator
    Mildura Rural City Council


    Pro Cert 2

  • 4.  RE:CMMS - GIS interface

    Posted 28 October 2013 10:24
    For feature classes on assets take a look at the IPWEA data specificatin ADAC(Asset Design & As Concstructed)

    Adam Hain
    IPWEA Brisbane QLD


    Pro Cert 2

  • 5.  RE:CMMS - GIS interface

    Posted 28 October 2013 19:08
    Barry, We don't have a live interface between our CMMS (MicroMain) and GIS. But we do carry the Property (park) and Buildings (e.g. community centers and pools) asset ID from the CMMS as foreign keys in our GIS. Furthermore, we are building a Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) database that carries the same asset ID on each project. Thus we can export project or asset data to GIS for geo-spatial analysis. We can also import geo-spatial information, such as park maintenance zones, back into CMMS or CIP database when needed. This is a decidedly low-tech approach, but also quite low-cost and rather cost effective. For example, we were asked the question "Which CIP projects are planned in a specific watershed. An export of projects with the site key was exported in GIS and we got a map and list of all projects in all watersheds in the city. We find it quite valuable to "see" some of the data mapped. I look forward to geo-spatial analysis of CMMS work load vis-a-vis recreation participation and demographics, the kind of analysis only GIS can do effectively. A live interface would be great, and it's in our planning horizon. But that is quite an effort and not necessary for the analytical questions to support management decisions. ------------------------------------------- Randy Webster Asset Management Program Manager Portland Parks & Recreation Portland, OR USA -------------------------------------------
    Pro Cert 2