Smart maintenance - header image

Smart maintenance – Intelligent maintenance and servicing of machines and production facilities

Smart and predictive maintenance refers to all technical and organizational measures that use digital tools, to rapidly increase the maintenance and service efficiency. Thereby on the one hand creating new business opportunities and on the other hand reducing costs. A central component of smart maintenance is the collection, processing and analysis of data from machines, plants and even whole production facilities. The goal is to detect errors and defects in advance, before they occur. This makes maintenance more effective and prevents breakdowns. It saves costs and resources. In this interview Anastasia Rachmann from ERNI Switzerland talks about why a company should invest into smart maintenance and what its advantages are.

Anastasia Rachman
ERNI Switzerland

Why should a company invest in smart maintenance?

With smart maintenance, production facilities can be monitored and all data analysed. As a result, malfunctions or even failures can be avoided. The digital transformation towards innovative smart maintenance is a crucial building block to grant flawless production without defects in the future.

High-performance maintenance of production plants and all components ensures one an important goal of every manufacturing company: remaining competitive and keeping up with the latest technologies. Especially in a Smart Factory, timely maintenance measures and of course coordination with all parties involved play an important role.

What are the main advantages of smart maintenance?

Smart maintenance offers a whole range of benefits. Most importantly, it reduces costs because less time and fewer resources are needed to repair or replace equipment. E.g. one difference between preventive and smart maintenance is that a wearing part is only replaced when it is essentially necessary. The most important advantages at a glance:

  • Increased productivity: Technicians work more efficiently because the data and information they receive is more accurate. This allows them to react more quickly to errors or even avoid them. This in turn results in everyone else working more efficiently because there are fewer errors in the system or even failures.
  • Reduced costs: Downtime is expensive. Smart maintenance systems reduce or eliminate them. This saves money on repairs, spare parts and working time.
  • Extended service life: Thanks to smart maintenance, work equipment has a significantly longer lifecycle and does not need to be replaced until much later.
  • Stay compliant: smart maintenance ensures that your company always remains compliant with the latest standards for equipment maintenance, especially ISO 55000.

Can you think of some success stories for smart maintenance?

A major success is the use of smart maintenance on the Yamanote Line in Tokyo. Every week, the trains transport 34 million passengers from early in the morning until late at night. Due to the short intervals and the lack of breaks, classic maintenance and servicing is almost impossible without interrupting ongoing train operations.

On the other hand, the introduction of smart maintenance technologies – for example, sensors on the train carriages – made it possible to collect and analyse a large amount of data from trains and tracks, enabling the detection of minor irregularities and the prediction and prevention of possible faults.

In this case, smart maintenance now enables far more effective maintenance and servicing of trains and lines than the classic variant. Especially in the transport sector, where infrastructures are often outdated, smart maintenance is likely to be a major area of application in the future.

What are the future tasks of smart maintenance?

The future of industry lies in the smart factory, and smart maintenance is a central building block for this.

So far, smart maintenance is not yet widespread in companies in the German-speaking countries. But the first applications of smart maintenance show the enormous potential. The sooner companies start using modern technologies, the greater their competitive advantage over the competition will be.

Even if the digital transformation of maintenance and repair to smart maintenance takes years, the first successes can be achieved quickly. Manageable pilot projects are ideal for the beginning. In this way, companies create positive reference values and the support of management and employees for this transformation is strengthened. Companies can build on this and tackle further smart maintenance innovation processes.


Would you like to make your maintenance smart? Discuss the possibilities with us:

Better ask ERNI

News from ERNI

In our newsroom, you find all our articles, blogs and series entries in one place.

  • 06.12.2023.

    Streamlining software development: The journey from multiple to unified requirements management tools

    Productivity in software development is slowed down by managing specifications across various requirements management (RM) tools. Although moving to a single, updated RM tool involves an upfront investment, the long-term benefits are considerable. These include increased process efficiency, enhanced collaboration, superior traceability, improved software specification quality, cost reductions, scalability and better integration with other RM tools, among others.

  • 22.11.2023.

    Recognising trends: An insight into regression analysis

    Data plays a very important role in every area of a company. When it comes to data, a distinction is made primarily between operational data and dispositive data. Operational data play an important role, especially in day-to-day business. However, they are not nearly as relevant as dispositive data. This is because these data are collected over a longer period of time and provide an initial insight into the history or the past.

  • 08.11.2023.

    Why do we need digital transformation for medical devices?

    For hospitals, it is not up for discussion as to whether they want to digitalise. The increasing age of the population in western countries and the progressive shortage of medical professionals mean that without digitalisation, the healthcare system will not be able to provide the quality that patients want in the future.

  • 25.10.2023.

    Mastering the challenges of mobile app testing: Strategies for efficient quality assurance

    Discover the unique challenges faced in testing mobile applications and learn how to overcome them effectively. From selecting suitable devices and operating systems to leveraging cloud-based test platforms, test automation and emulators, this article provides seven essential strategies for optimising your mobile app testing process.

  • 11.10.2023.

    Incorporating classical requirements engineering methods in agile software development for a laboratory automation system

    Traditional agile methodologies can sometimes struggle to accommodate the complexity and regulatory requirements of laboratory automation systems, leading to misalignment with stakeholder needs, scope creep, and potential delays. The lack of comprehensive requirements documentation can result in ambiguous expectations and hinder effective communication among cross-functional teams.

  • 27.09.2023.

    Unveiling the power of data: Part III – Navigating challenges and harnessing insights in data-driven projects

    Transforming an idea into a successful machine learning (ML)-based product involves navigating various challenges. In this final part of our series, we delve into two crucial aspects: ensuring 24/7 operation of the product and prioritising user experience (UX).

  • 13.09.2023.

    Exploring Language Models: An overview of LLMs and their practical implementation

    Generative AI models have recently amazed with unprecedented outputs, such as hyper-realistic images, diverse music, coherent texts, and synthetic videos, sparking excitement. Despite this progress, addressing ethical and societal concerns is crucial for responsible and beneficial utilization, guarding against issues like misinformation and manipulation in this AI-powered creative era.

  • 01.09.2023.

    Peter Zuber becomes the new Managing Director of ERNI Switzerland

    ERNI is setting an agenda for growth and innovation with the appointment of Peter Zuber as Managing Director of the Swiss business unit. With his previous experience and expertise, he will further expand the positioning of ERNI Switzerland, as a leading consulting firm for software development and digital innovation.