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  • 1.  Building Hierarchy - implementing an asset hierarchy for building structures/elements in your CMMS system

    Posted 06-12-2022 10:11

    Hi everyone,

    I would like to survey the group here to see if anyone has been involved with implementing an asset hierarchy for building structures/elements in your CMMS (Computerized Maintenance Management System) or, alternatively, how many use a separate facility management solution?

    Our regional district (Metro Vancouver) operates and maintains a wide range of Asset Classes (e.g. Waste Water Treatment Plants, Water Treatment Plants, Sewage Pump Stations, Water Pump Stations, Sewage Collection system, Water distribution system and Works Yards).

    Within our CMMS, our current equipment hierarchy contains "systems", "positions", and "assets", in that order. "Assets" can be thought of as the physical equipment, "Positions" can be thought of as the physical location of the equipment (i.e., its parking space), and "Systems" are used to organize positions into different groupings. This works well for single or 'point' assets; however, for building elements, there will be times when we do not want to break everything out into separate positions. For example, we would not want to create a separate position for every single exterior wall on a treatment plant.

    Unfortunately, we cannot track all exterior walls at the system level only because we are unable to assign quantities and costs to the system level. We could define a single position for a group of exterior walls but we were wondering what others were doing?

    In particular, we would like to hear how:


    -    You have incorporated a building hierarchy into your CMMS.
    -    What hierarchy you are using for building elements (e.g., ASTM UNIFORMAT II).
    -    How equipment naming / numbering is assigned to building elements.

    Look forward to hearing your experience and thoughts!



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    Kent Lau
    Metro Vancouver
    Integrated Asset Management
    Burnaby, BC
    Canada
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  • 2.  RE: Building Hierarchy - implementing an asset hierarchy for building structures/elements in your CMMS system

    Posted 09-12-2022 00:27

    Hi Kent,

     

    Good questions!

     

    Our department operates and maintain water treatment plants, water pumping stations and water tanks for Montréal city. So we have the same reflection.

     

    Initially, we have split our infrastructures in 3 categories: process, buildings and tanks.

    For process, we have a specific hierarchy with all physical equipment dedicated to the process.

    For tanks, we have water tanks only (underground and concrete tanks).

     

    For buildings, we use UNIFORMAT and the hierarchy stop at the level 3 (X 11 11).

    So for each building we have a uniformat hierarchy. The number / name of the element is the uniformat number / name for the building.

     

    Example: Building Y - B Shell – B10 Superstructure – B1010 Floor construction.

     

    We consider each level 3 like a "point" asset.  We have the estimate (quantity and cost) , the description of each intervention and estimate year of completion for each level 3.

    This data comes from an audit and, after that, we can organize the work (maintain, project, etc), evaluate the investments needs and follow the status of the building.

    I think the key is, in the first time, evaluated the data and details you need.

    Actually we don't have integrated the building hierarchy in our CMMS.

    I hope you find this information useful.

    Looking forward reading more experience.



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    Amaury Garel
    Ville de Montreal
    Agent technique
    Montreal QC
    Canada
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  • 3.  RE: Building Hierarchy - implementing an asset hierarchy for building structures/elements in your CMMS system

    Posted 09-12-2022 13:54
    Hi Kent,

    We have similar CMMS system challenges regarding functional location (position), systems, and equipment.  In our case, we have our building maintenance work orders in our ERP system, and we have a separate facility capital planning software system to track our condition and long-term building system renewal needs.  Unfortunately, we don't have common system codes in use between the two systems (current situation, hoping to change that in the future) and some things/details are only in one of the systems (depending on the thing, details may be in the ERP or may be in the capital planning system).

    In our capital planning and condition assessment software we use Uniformat E1557 based coding to define system elements to at least a 2nd / 3rd level, and where possible to a 4th or 5th level (e.g. B30 - Roofing; D1010 Elevators and Lifts, D302001 STEAM BOILERS).  We also can group or split these elements (e.g. D202001 PIPES AND FITTINGS would usually be grouped; if we did a partial re-pipe, we would create 2 elements for the different groups of pipe with the same Uniformat code)

    On the ERP "CMMS" side, we have our functional location code structured to define "place - site - building - space" for the facility, and then the "maintenance group / activity / system" and "sub-system/activity" as may be appropriate.  We then connect the "equipment" to that functional location when we have specific equipment configured in the ERP.  The functional location can also act as a "grouped" item for non-identified equipment building systems (e.g. roof is defined in the functional location, but has no equipment item in the ERP) - ideally I would like to have a "group equipment" asset in the inventory for those types of grouped things.  Equipment usually also has a common "tag" code that corresponds to the common unit identifier for the equipment at that site (e.g. AHU-1) in addition to the unique system equipment_ID and functional location.

    Ideally, we would use our functional location to define "where", and sometimes the "what", and then connect equipment (either separate "assets" or "group assets" like walls) to that functional location hierarchy.  Those individual equipment units may be represented by a grouped system element in the capital planning system (M:1), or may have a directly corresponding elements (1:1) depending on the needs, and we would have the attributes and common classification code attached (e.g. Uniformat)

    In your example, walls should probably be set up as a grouped "equipment" in your CMMS.  You may have some particular components that you would define as separate assets in CMMS but that may be grouped for analysis and forecasting. In your case, you may need more "location' structure in your hierarchy to really identify locations within the facility where you would then have "Systems - Position - Equipment".  Joys of using a production process/plant based system hierarchy for facility systems.

    Happy to chat more about this if you're interested.

    Doug Manarin
    Facilities Sustainment - Real Estate and Facilities Management
    City of Vancouver
    Vancouver, BC, Canada

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    Doug Manarin
    City of Vancouver
    Asset Manager - Facilities
    Vancouver BC
    Canada
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  • 4.  RE: Building Hierarchy - implementing an asset hierarchy for building structures/elements in your CMMS system

    Posted 13-12-2022 09:38
    Hi everyone,

    We very much appreciate your time and kindness to share your unique experience with setting up a building hierarchy. I am going to relay your valuable insights and comments back to my team for further discussions.

    We also look forward to the opportunity to chat more with you about this interesting topic :)

    Kindest regards,

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    Kent Lau
    Metro Vancouver
    Assistant Project Engineer
    Burnaby BC
    Canada
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  • 5.  RE: Building Hierarchy - implementing an asset hierarchy for building structures/elements in your CMMS system

    Posted 14-12-2022 01:07
    Hi everyone,

    I would like to add a precision.

    To follow the building, we use UNIFORMAT 3rd level.
    This level allows us to define needs and asset condition.

    But when we look to define projects, we use 4th level.
    If necessary we group the interventions in the same project.

    So, we check all the building at 4th level and our hierarchy is defined at 4th level.


    I read the answers and I have two questions:
    - How you estimate the replacement value of your building? (global method (aera, localisation, etc) / ''bottom up'')
    - How you integrate the process equipment in your CMMS?


    Best regards,


    Amaury Garel, ing. PRT
    Responsable de la gestion des actifs ponctuels
    Service de l'eau
    Ville de Montréal
    Montréal, QC, Canada

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    Amaury Garel, ing. PRT
    Ville de Montreal
    Montreal QC
    Canada
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