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How Do You Measure Success Once You Beat Unplanned Downtime?

A post-it note with 'What Now?', referring to when ROI no longer tells the full story.

ROI is an important metric. However, according to James Newman, Augury’s Head of Product and Portfolio Marketing, it doesn’t tell the whole story. Once you’ve made all downtime planned, you need to go beyond ROI – and Machine Health – to measure value. 

Mea Culpa

It’s our fault, really, that some clients come to question our value. 

We deliver on our promise to make unplanned downtime obsolete – thanks to the alignment between our tech and those working on the plant floor, taking our advice and doing the actual maintenance. 

We prove ourselves with a fast and vast return on investment. In fact, we just upgraded our Value Calculator, which shows potential customers how much time and money they can save with Augury’s Machine Health solution. Indeed, ROI remains a bottom line that cannot lie. After all, every procurement and financial department love these happily crunchable numbers across time and space. 

A Proven Worth

And, of course, we’ll be sticking to our promise of eliminating unplanned downtime. It remains the Achilles’ heel of manufacturing in terms of both costs and safety.  

It’s only become more relevant with continued supply chain challenges – waiting months for a single essential spare part can devastate your business. And then there’s the workforce shortages: with not enough people to hire, manufacturers are forced to do more with less. As a result, Machine Health isn’t going anywhere. It’s proven its worth.

But it doesn’t mean we can’t expand on our ambitions – and how we measure them. 

Awkward Conversations

It’s legitimate for those customers who have been with us for three or four years and are now enjoying almost 100% uptime thanks to our system, to question what value we are bringing them now that downtime is no longer the price of doing business. 

They are looking at the numbers and seeing we are not saving them that five or six million dollars as we did three years ago. Our case was clear.

Dream Team

Indeed, their maintenance teams on the floor are not questioning our worth. We’ve become a fundamental part of what they do, and they still have wins almost every day. And to their credit, they are the core of a successful Machine Health program. 

Teams are responding precisely as they are supposed to – fixing things before they become a real problem. They’ve learned to run the assets better. For instance, they know if a bearing reading changes, it’s time for lubrication. They know what will happen and don’t have to wait for the danger alarm.

This is something to celebrate. But with no full danger alarm, we can no longer count it as preventing downtime…

Building A Value Narrative

Our champions working at our client manufacturers – usually those working on the floor – understand this paradox. They’ve reached out to our customer success managers to help them better describe the worth of our program. And for them, we were inspired to write a FAQ: Do you have any tools for selling the results of our program to our leadership?

There is indeed a much larger story to tell regarding what value Augury brings to the table. A larger value narrative can work to loop in the bigger picture that goes beyond simple ROI. And such a narrative can grow from answering new questions. 

Digging Deeper: Telling The Story In New Ways

Meanwhile, we continue to travel the road of continuous improvement – refining and expanding our Machine Health offering. There are still so many directions to take from here. While often more challenging to quantify, it’s not impossible. We already know from customer conversations they are finding value in all sorts of places.

Look at the number of resolved root causes as the workforce goes from firefighting to planned maintenance based on real-time insights. Has the morale changed? How about your safety numbers?

Look at the retention numbers. Are fewer people retiring early? Are you hiring more younger workers who are attracted to cutting-edge AI tech? Is there increased job satisfaction?

In fact, once you start digging, countless questions may have value in their answers:

·      What business problems did Augury solve?

·      Are there the stories that bring the program’s success to life?

·      What’s changed? In terms of how you do maintenance? In when you do maintenance? Do your maintenance and operations teams interact differently? Did you stop doing things you no longer had to do?

·      How has Augury helped you go after root causes and improve Process Health?

·      What do the users of Augury say about how their day-to-day life has been transformed? In terms of productivity? Job Satisfaction? Safety?

·      Are there other metrics you can measure besides avoided downtime hours?

Yes, our original pitch was and continues to be helping you eliminate unnecessary downtime. But our goal has always been more than that: it’s been to be your partner and co-pilot as you continually up your game and elevate the total value you create for your organization.

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