Enterprise asset management for ports and terminals



Rajesh Nair, Director, Envecon, Mumbai, India


For port and terminal operators, optimal use of assets is a key factor in running a successfully performing terminal. Ports and terminals are increasingly based on the concept of driving assets to the maximum, while simultaneously improving the performance in the yard, quayside and gate arena. The end-goal is to continuously improve berth moves per hour and gross moves per hour. Currently, the challenge facing port operators is how to ensure all their handling equipment is managed in a way that ensures high productivity and improves reliability. Ensuring this requires a well-designed IT solution that can keep port and terminal assets from ageing by implementing maintenance on a regular basis to keep machines in good shape without jeopardising current port operations. The basic requirements of a terminal could be monitored by an off-the-shelf enterprise asset management (EAM) solution. However, to make things really work, terminal solutions need to be integrated into other port domains such as finance and accounting, procurement, and inventory management to give a full picture of operational efficiency. Next, a terminal must make the decision between whether to buy an off-the-shelf EAM solution and integrate it with the other systems referred to above, or to go with an enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution. There are various ERP systems that are available in the market that can meet the entire requirements of ports and terminals, and currently, SAP is considered as an industry leader in providing end-toend solutions in this domain.

The need for enterprise asset management

Terminals require flexible solutions that can analyse data to predict and plan maintenance activities and costs in order to optimise operations. Terminal specific implementations have made it difficult to compare performances between different terminals in the past. Therefore, the information available from ports rendered it problematic to increase efficiency and to implement techniques such as total productive maintenance. Having learned from the innumerable challenges unverifiable data manifested, the industry trend has gravitated towards a single system solution that can meet the majority of the needs of a terminal. Using a system with integrated architecture removes key obstacles in IT management, as well as overall business administration, especially through updated and newer versions of systems that are aimed

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