The company also plans to employ analytics to improve repair versus replace decisions, and at the same time optimise preventive maintenance cycles. Manila Water is looking to leverage a Linear Asset Management (LAM) too.
According to Garcia, the LAM will cover 6,000 kilometres of pipes in the company's water and sewer network. "Similar to EAM, LAM will provide us with a comprehensive repository of network data, including records of the assets' condition and maintenance history; effectively manage the workflow of maintenance activities for faster resolution of network problems and customer complaints; and improve cost management through fact-based repair-vs-replace decisions," explained Garcia.
When asked for advice on transforming business processes, Garcia said it is necessary to be clear on the project's business objectives. "Sometimes, there is a tendency on the side of project proponents to jump into the technology or the system to be implemented, without being clear on the purpose," he said.
Building a committed and knowledgeable team to drive a digital transformation project is also important. "Having the technical know-how and domain knowledge of the business processes are key, but in addition, there has to be a high level of teamwork and commitment among the team members. Difficulties will always be encountered in projects of this magnitude, and these qualities become critical particularly during such stages," explained Garcia.
Besides that, businesses must remember to engage their stakeholders early. "There is always some pain involved in implementing changes. With new processes and new skill sets being required, there will always be those who will resist these changes if the benefits are not clearly spelled out. People will be more willing to embrace changes if they can see that doing so will not only improve the way the way they work, but also benefit customers," he noted.
In conclusion, Garcia underscored the need for strong management mandate and high visibility for a successful business processes transformation. "The 'visibility' part is to make sure that difficult issues are resolved and addressed instead of being swept under the rug. It also ensures that the momentum is preserved from start to finish. Usually, projects start on a high note, but during the more tedious phases - such as defining new processes, data cleansing, extensive quality testing - there could be a tendency to either slow down or cram later on to catch up on deliverables, thus sacrificing quality," he explained.
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