Asset Maintenance, HSE and Supply Chain teams with sites across Africa’s mining and energy industries face a unique combination of operational challenges. This blog highlights some of the key issues faced by Progressive TSL’s African-based clients, addressed by our asset management solutions based on either Infor EAM or IBM Maximo solutions. 

    1. Storage of inventory in African climate
      In humid and dusty environments, it is not always easy to hold stock of spare parts, equipment and chemicals in the ideal conditions defined by the manufacturers.  This can significantly reduce shelf lives and durability. Replacements may need to be ordered from overseas, often from other continents, which can be costly and incur huge lead times. To minimise unnecessary stock obsolescence, our Asset Management (EAM) solutions manage material inspection workflows and respond accordingly. Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning technology, delivered alongside the EAM, enables procurement teams to predict inventory lifetime based on environmental factors. This can then be reflected in reordering plans, so critical materials are replenished on time and costeffectively.
    2. Monitoring the health of remote assets 
      Fixed and mobile assets are often based in remote and demanding locations, e.g. a solar farm in a harsh desert environment or a mine deep underground. Utilising the wealth of data entering the SCADA system along with the asset’s sensors enables the assets to be inspected remotely, reducing the need for technicians to take long journeys to potentially dangerous locations. Progressive’s Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) solutions can work with data analytics tools within Infor OS to analyse the data collected from sensors with the AI technology described above to determine when to plan physical asset inspection visits and any resulting maintenance work.
    3. Multiple languages
      Teams working onsite may not all share a common language. For Health and Safety, and operational reasons, it is crucial that work instructions are understood by all. Our EAM solutions support multiple languages to minimise language problems between sites and regions.
    4. Multi-currencies and exchange rates
      There is often a need to run reports, purchasing and other transactions in multiple currencies. Progressive’s solutions support all the African and international currencies.
    5. Effective logistics management
      Transporting equipment and parts, often across continents, can be very costlyThese logistical, voyage and container costs can be tracked and reported using Progressive’s solutions. These systems can also incorporate bulk orders, container consignment and customs considerations as appropriate.
    6. Vendor Managed Inventory and consignments
      A Vendor Managed Inventory (VMI) approach can be useful, particularly when starting a new operation or setting up a temporary site.  This approach has been adopted by some of our clients when parts and equipment are not readily accessible. In this scenario, vendors hold stock on the client’s behalf. Equipment can also be bought on consignment, whereby the stock is ordered, stored in a third-party warehouse, keeping storage costs and space down, but not paid for until it is needed. Progressive’s EAM solution can be configured to support a VMI model using automated procurement workflows to streamline processing. This provides full visibility of your stock levels across your own warehouses, consignments and VMI.
    7. Audit and control
      To keep full visibility of purchases and work performed across a number of remotely located sites, it’s essential that your systems can apply robust audit and control processes. Progressive can configure the system to reflect an appropriate approvals workflow in line with a Delegation of Authority (DOA), for example, to force purchase order signatures. These processes can be managed via mobile devices.  Supervisors can be alerted to any non-conformities. Access to centralised reports and KPIs will also enable you to track inefficiencies and distribution of spending across sites and individual assets. This will enable the central team to identify where processes can be improved and where asset maintenance or replacement programs may be necessary.
    8. Managing remote teams during a pandemic
      COVID 19 has introduced a range of additional challenges. For further insight on how Progressive can assist, please read our blog: How Enterprise Asset Management systems are helping to fight COVID-19

ProgressiveAfrican experience
It is important that your operational software solutions and training are delivered by a company that understands your region’s needs. Progressive has been implementing finance, supply chain and asset management solutions to organisations in energy and mining across Africa since 2005. Our clients include Seplat, Endeavour Mining, LEKOIL, New Age (African Global Energy) and Impact Oil and Gas. During these projects, we have gained first-hand knowledge of the challenges faced by operations teams. Our fast-track solutions are configured to address local challenges specifically whilst ensuring effective control, visibility, and reporting for your procurement, inventory, and maintenance workflows.  

“We chose Progressive due to their detailed understanding of Infor’s SunSystems and Infor EAM products, coupled with their African industry experience. Over the years they have proved to be an excellent partner working closely with our teams across the three sites in London, Abidjan and local mine sites to deliver solutions which have brought clearly demonstrable benefits to Endeavour.”

Michael Sumares, Vice President – Finance, Treasury and Tax,
Endeavour Mining Corporation

About Progressive 

Progressive TSL is an Infor Gold Channel Partner (SunSystems, Infor EAM and Infor OS) and an IBM Gold Business Partner (Maximo). Contact Progressive TSL to learn how we can address your operational, EHSE and supply chain management challenges, maximise the performance of your assets and help your African sites to thrive.  

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