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Beyond the Tag: How Digital Asset Records Simplify Ongoing Service

How Asset Tracking Systems Improve Ongoing OEM Service

So you've heard about digital asset tracking, and its ability to serialize parts for OEMs when they order them. But what about the longer term benefits of these digital asset management programs? How can they help OEMs and their customers down the road?

One important benefit is being able to record and track key life cycle details for each of the critical components you use. Imagine being able to download a report like "Carfax" on every packaging controls system you've delivered. And having ongoing access to critical part-specific information, like component locations, performance events, maintenance needs and service histories, in real time and on demand.

And what if those digital records also could organize for customers all the documentation needed with their builds, like updated parts manuals, certifications, maintenance schedules, warranties and even photographs, directly tied to the components in question?

Capabilities like these might not be commonplace among food and beverage packaging OEMs today, but they provide a powerful upgrade to printed, static and generic records for critical components like pneumatic controls, actuators and matched connectors.

A case in point is the Parker Tracking System (PTS), through which Parker serializes and tags components for packaging OEMs. Tags and records are created prior to delivery, using the OEM's private label if requested, and then these records are seamlessly transferred to the OEM's PTS account and assigned to end user builds.

This serialized information then serves as the foundation for a variety of component- and performance-related insights OEMs can record and track after builds are put into service.

For example, OEMs might use PTS to track and report on the performance of dozens of pneumatic controls installed across a range of food and beverage customers' builds.

End users benefit from PTS tags and records too: Because each asset tag can be private-labeled with the OEM's contact details, food processors never have to question who to contact for service and exact OEM-quality replacements. And should they need to troubleshoot specific components within systems or compare one assembly's performance to another, PTS records can provide them a roadmap.

Perhaps one of the most valuable features of PTS is that OEMs have a platform for updating their records as builds are completed, altered, commissioned and serviced, and when performance-related events occur.

"It's a chronology of vitals," observes William Sayavich, Technology Manager for Parker's Global Services Division, who explains that tracking life cycle performance for specific parts helps OEMs and their customers understand use and performance patterns and develop best practices over time.

"We are effectively creating an asset genealogy system. One that allows us to compare and contrast assets across industries and geographies to optimize performance," Sayavich explains.

PTS also can document key system changes, like routing and plumbing modifications, that vary from initial designs, but reflect needed improvements.
And because each PTS tag contains a manufacture date, it can be used to drive proactive preventive maintenance for the end user. This in turn accelerates the MRO life cycle, keeping OEM machines running efficiently, longer.

Through all of these features, PTS is much more than a simple tag with a bar code. It's a life cycle reporting tool that gives OEMs greater oversight and control of the critical components in their builds and their performance over time.

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