Plant Dossiers and Document Management, everything and the kitchen sink


Public Affairs dossier

Image via Wikipedia

When you think of plant dossiers, a great many thoughts spring to life, some already think of their favorite software that keeps it all neat and tidy for them, some may even ask what a plant dossier is, I know I did a month back.

In my experience, a plant dossier is a system that keeps tabs on the mechanical, maintenance, acquisition, installation and general upkeep of machinery and equipment owned by an organisation.

What I also realize is that, given the importance of said dossiers, if they aren’t done the right way, the consequences can be catastrophic. Think its an overstatement? Let’s have a look at a few items that go into a dossier and see where it can be implemented across a range of businesses.

For instance, if your organisation has equipment, from computers, to laptops, to cameras, to printers, to mining equipment to vehicles, just about all of it, even the kitchen sink of course, can be added to such a dossier.

You would begin by adding the item, let’s say it’s a computer, to the dossier and then begin adding any documentation that belongs with it from its user manual, user manuals belonging to any peripherals, software user manuals, maintenance documentation etc. This allows you to track anything and everything done on that specific computer. This allows you to know when to do routine maintenance based on what has already been performed, from a slight upgrade like a new hard drive added, or extra RAM, to a complete rebuild from the ground up. It also gives you an exact idea of the condition of the computer and shows you that it is in fact still running as it should.

Which is all well and good, you might say, but how do you compile such a system? You could buy separate systems that deal only with plant dossiers, or you could add it to a document management system, but then you would need to make sure that the system you choose would be capable of creating the dossier perfectly, and have you up and running in a matter of minutes, hassle free.

To do this you would need an effective document management system, and a content management system, all rolled into one application. That allows you to link from the content management system to the document management system in on complete stand alone system running from a dashboard.

Complicated? Not at all really.

My recent experience, helping to set up one such dossier, shows that anyone serious about keeping up to date with their maintenance programs or just want to know what’s happening with their equipment, needs to have a dossier such as this. You not only keep track of anything happening to your equipment, but you could show where unnecessary maintenance is done, saving you a great deal of money at the same time. It also allows you to find problem equipment that should be replaced instead of constantly being maintained.

This system can then be modified further by setting up actions and controls to check, audit, and do routine maintenance on equipment, keeping your organisation running smoothly.

A system such as this would prove invaluable to just about any organisation, even if you only have a kitchen sink.

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