What Is the State of Industrial Asset Performance Management?

By Ed O'Brien

Asset-intensive organizations are becoming increasingly aware of the capabilities of Asset Performance Management (APM) in today’s industrial organizations.  To better gauge the progress, of operations and maintenance teams on their Industrial Asset Performance ManagementAPM progress, ARC Advisory Group surveyed leaders on the state of their organizations’ APM journeys.  The questions focused on a variety of digital transformation, information technology (IT), and operational technology (OT) topics, and their effects on APM execution. 

While the full survey results will soon be available to ARC Advisory Service clients, the following includes some insights into some of high-level findings on the survey.  For more information on ARC’s observations and approaches to APM, go to: https://www.arcweb.com/industry-concepts/asset-performance-management-apm-concept

Firms' APM Journeys Vary Widely

For some organizations, their APM journeys are underway, while for others, it is a work-in-progress.  Even though many industrial organizations indicate strong interest in asset performance management, relatively few have achieved the ultimate goal of enterprise-wide adoption.  Some understand why APM is important to their asset-intensive organizations, but many are still assessing the “what, “when”, and “how” of crafting their organization’s IT, OT, and APM transformations. 

There are many reasons for this wide variation in implementing APM, ranging from people, processes, and technologies.  Still, APM, with its emphasis on predicting potential asset anomalies and failures, broad connectivity and interoperability, and asset reliability, is an important foundation in organizations’ maintenance and operational strategies.  

Primary Themes Identified in the Survey

The survey results show that most firms have a strong desire to better understand and implement best practices in APM, although their progress in implementing APM initiatives varies widely.  Even though APM is an important element in many industrial firms’ asset management strategies, it often remains a work-in-progress.  It may be surprising to some, that so many asset-intensive organizations remain in the early stages of their APM journeys. 

Current State of APM Initiatives 

 When asked about the progress of their APM initiatives, survey respondents offered the following:

  • Less than a quarter of respondents indicate that their strategy has been implemented. 
  • In addition, only one-in-ten say that their strategy is developed but not yet implemented. 
  • About four-in-ten respondents say that their strategy is under development.
  • Almost 20% plan to develop an APM strategy in the future.
  • Eight percent have no plans to implement an APM strategy.
Industrial Asset Performance Management

Challenges Implementing APM 

Even though many maintenance and operations teams acknowledge the many benefits of APM, some are grappling with headwinds that can delay or thwart the success of APM initiatives.  Examples of areas of potential concern include:

  • The leading challenge (noted in almost six-in-ten responses) point to data management issues as being problematic.
  • Almost half said that implementing new work processes that created headwinds for their APM program.  
  • One-third of respondents cite either overlapping APM solutions or insufficient training. 
  • Other reasons include various process or planning challenges experienced.

Industrial Asset Performance Management

Areas of Greatest Value from APM    

Even though there are several areas where APM can be particularly beneficial to maintenance and operations teams, those areas thought to provide the most value include the following:


  • More than half of respondents identify asset reliability as the area that receive the greatest values. 
  • Over a quarter cite maintenance and operations cost reductions.
  • Almost 10% see workforce efficiency benefits.


Industrial Asset Performance Management


Closing Thoughts 

As industrial firms continue on their journeys toward improved asset productivity and efficiency, many are expressing increasing interest in advanced APM capabilities and methodologies.  The results from the underlying ARC APM survey are both insightful and valuable, as APM is an important element in many industrial firms’ asset management strategies.

This quest remains a work-in-progress for many organizations.  This is best demonstrated by the 40 percent of respondents who noted that their APM strategies are under development.  Also, the slightly less than a quarter of respondents that say that their strategy has been implemented, suggests that there is ample room for improvement in many firms. 

However, most respondents see great value in implementing APM systems and methodologies.  They particularly see the highest potential value in better managing critical assets, including production assets.



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