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Synergy with Drones Opens New Horizons for Cloud-Based EAM

November 10, 2017

There’s no shortage of good reasons—from lower maintenance costs to operational efficiency, to longer mean time between failures—to shift government agencies’ enterprise asset management (EAM) systems to the cloud.

But now government agencies also have an opportunity to combine two of the hottest new technologies on the market—EAM software and drones—in a way that opens up new horizons for asset and maintenance managers, literally and figuratively.

“Cloud-based EAM is the glue that holds the components together,” writes Wayne Bobby, Infor Vice-President of U.S. Federal, on the Government Technology site. But “the latest technology opportunity for government managers is the powerful synergy between EAM software and drones.” The eye in the sky offers “a 360-degree view of all your assets, delivering essential data and insights to drive an effective asset management plan.”

EAM for ‘Skinny Budgets’

At a time when every government agency must stretch a “skinny” budget to get more done and deliver better service, cloud-based EAM can deliver a 30 to 40% reduction in IT costs, putting an end to local modifications and “freeing up on-premises development teams to take on more specific, focused assignments,” Bobby writes. “The takeaway: When the going gets tough, the tough (and the smart) take their EAM systems off-premises.”

And EAM really comes into its own with drone technology that can streamline inspection processes, boost asset performance, and improve regulatory compliance for government assets from trains to shipyards, aircraft to pipelines, buildings to bridges.

Unprecedented Technological Breakthroughs

“It’s a moment when multiple breakthrough technologies are evolving in parallel—all of them at unprecedented speed,” he notes. That synergy can help deliver greater government accountability, giving agencies and departments “the visibility, transparency, digital security and operational control to keep track of large departments or functions, make maximum use of every asset at their disposal, and deliver the responsive, high-quality services that increasingly tech-savvy citizens expect.”

This 87-second video shows just how much ground a drone can cover. The combination of EAM and drones makes inspections safer and more efficient, making it easier and less expensive to spot problems, schedule maintenance, and get faster updates on work in progress.

“When you get a drone, you think you’re going to use it for, maybe, one or two applications, but you end up finding new applications to use it for daily,” said Todd Johnson, Senior IT Support Specialist and EAM/ParkStat Supervisor at the Maryland National Capital Park and Planning Commission. With 500 assets keyed into its EAM system, the commission cut its injury rate 50% and saved millions of dollars.

With the advent of “Drone as a Service” offerings, the cost of leveraging this innovation has become significantly reduced and shifted from capital expenditures to an operating expense. This provides for a much shorter ROI and eliminates the need to build the maintenance of drones and technical refresh into the budget.

Learn more: Drone Enterprise Asset Management (DEAMS) Industry Perspective

Joe Arthur, Strategy and Innovation Executive, Infor Public Sector
  • Federal Government
  • State and Local Government
  • North America
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