How Our Customer Automated SAP Plant Maintenance Work Order Collection and Distribution … And How You Can Too!

by Catherine O'Toole

With almost 1 million customers, a utility company located in Nebraska strives to always be on for its customers. By utilizing a variety of energy generation sources like hydro-electrical, coal fire, and nuclear plants, the company must keep the plants and distribution networks at high levels of output, while also practicing strict safety standards.

A crucial part of maintaining the safety regimen is scheduling outages every 18 months to perform extensive maintenance in all areas of their plants. Obviously, when dealing with a nuclear plant, there is no room for error. Therefore, maintenance or repairs require clearly regulated and highly detailed work order packages to ensure that the proper safety protocols are being followed.

The Work Packages

The maintenance work packages are maintained inside SAP’s Plant Maintenance (PM) module, and each package requires additional document attachments to complete. Also, at the company’s nuclear plant, the work packages are relied on by the technicians to maintain the facility – an incredibly important task!

The Challenge

If you have created work packages in the SAP module, you might also be familiar with the challenge this company faced. With massive amounts of attachments, maintenance work packages were extremely difficult to compile. The challenge was compounded due to many attachments stored on different servers – and were not linked to Document Information Records in the SAP Document Management System. Because of this, the company’s printing process required an employee to pull up each attachment in its original application, print it out, and then compile and sort the entire maintenance work package by hand.

There was no streamlined process of printing the attachments out of SAP. When the attachments were printed, they also had no identification to indicate which maintenance work package they belonged to. It was a “frustrating, time consuming, and tedious” process that translated into 240 hours assembling the packages – per outage!

The Search for a Solution

The company knew that something had to be done to improve its current print processing and began to look for outside assistance and scheduled a meeting with SAP. After describing the “painful” current print process, the SAP representative suggested SEAL Systems, an SAP partner. Following SAP’s recommendations, this company came to SEAL Systems to help them streamline their processes and improve the efficiency of their document information management.

The Solution: One Step Plant Maintenance Work Packages

One of the greatest challenges of the company’s printing process was the process of retrieving each attachment, printing, and then sorting by hand. SEAL Systems engaged new processes that take out all the tedious actions and distill them down to one single step. Now, the entire work order could be printed as a single unit.

SEAL Systems also took into account that the attachments included different types of documents like graphics and images. Therefore, specialized attachments like these were configured so that they are sent directly to a plotter during the print job.

The Solution Enhancements: Watermarks & Stamps

As a further enhancement to the company’s printing process, SEAL Systems also gave every attachment in the package a watermark stamp to identify the work order it belonged to and its sequence in the package. This improvement assures that the documents will appear in the right succession and that the attachments can be restored to the correct order once the documents have been returned to the plant (if needed).

The Advantages of Plant Maintenance Workflows

Before the implementation of the solution from SEAL Systems, an average plant maintenance work package took 9 minutes to assemble. Now, with SEAL Systems, the time has been slashed to 1.5 minutes!

>> See also: Plant Maintenance Orders Printing: Create Work Packages with One Click

SEAL Systems Can Help You Too!

If you would like to learn more or would like a free demo, contact us here. Or, fill out the below form.

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