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Posted October 26 2018
Written by Mark Rooney

Maximo Mobile Options for a Distributed Workforce

Mobilizing Maximo can be an advantage independent of which flavor or version of Maximo you have. The ability for your workforce to access Maximo data on site and update it immediately, greatly increases the efficiency and accuracy of your operation.

 There are two fundamental considerations at the outset:

  •  Connectivity
  • Functionality

 In some cases, Maximo mobile connection may be as simple as using your tablet at home with Wi-Fi connection. The operation may be off site and rely on mobile data coverage. Sensitive operations often protect Maximo by having security disallowing standard wireless connection. Certain industries can sometimes make Wireless connection impractical, such as remote locations without cell coverage. These cases use disconnected operations, allowing for nightly docking or regular online connection for data synchronization.

When we identify functionality to be mobilized, we must consider which pain points we are trying to address. We may want to bridge a single bottleneck such as work approval, common pain points such as on-site work details, and updates from technicians, or possibly specific items unique to a complex operation. We must also consider the likelihood of future business process changes.

There are many options using IBM software and 3rd party software. Based on solution complexity and capability, the following are four of the many possible solutions:

  • Light - Disconnected Mobility needs, low investment & risk, scalable, specific business process needs
    • IBM Maximo email – For disconnected usage, but occasional email connection
      • Works with any device that has email capability
      • Built into Maximo, configured as required for individual actions such as PO and Work Approval, Activity Assignment, show Asset or Location details, or other predefined actions
  • Medium - Connected Mobility needs, low investment & risk, easily scalable, Flexible business process options
    • IBM Maximo Everyplace – For fully-connected mobile access to Maximo
      • Uses mobile device browser, for IOS, Android and Microsoft Mobile
      • Any Maximo application can be mobile per User access
      • Included in Maximo as of Version 7.6, and an add-on prior
  • High - Disconnected Mobility needs, significant investment, some scalability, predetermined best practice business process options
    • IBM Maximo Anywhere – For disconnected and/or connected usage
      • IOS, Android and MS Windows devices.
      • Includes applications Work Approval, Work Execution, Inspections, Physical Counts, Issues and Returns, Service Request and Asset Data Manager, and IBM is planning to add more
  • Custom - Disconnected mobility needs, large investment, scalable, specific business process needs
    • IBM Mobile First – For disconnected usage
      • IOS, Android and MS Windows devices.
      • Is the underlying IT solution for Maximo Anywhere. It is an enterprise grade application mobility framework. It can be extended across Maximo, in addition to other enterprise applications, giving mobile access to key IT capabilities across an organization
      • Requires Expert IT knowledge

In the case of an existing Maximo Mobile install there is:

  • IBM Maximo Mobile Suites – For disconnected usage, to extend older Maximo installs
    • Works with Android and MS Windows devices.
    • Includes Work Manager, Inventory Manager, and Asset Manager
    • Ideal for older Maximo installs with mobile products, it allows you to upgrade your Maximo to 7.6.
    • IBM is no longer developing on this platform.
    • It is not recommended to purchase this product unless you already have existing Maximo mobile products or possibly an older Maximo to mobilize. 

There are many other mobility options for Maximo by 3rd parties, but they generally fall into one of the four levels of solutions above. In any case, any initiative should start with the same two questions, connection and functional freedom.

It will eventually be impossible to ignore mobility as part of your asset management tools such as Maximo. Prepare ahead of time and explore mobility options for your IBM Maximo solution with our team!

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