Enterprise asset management professionals are among the most generous group when it comes to knowledge sharing. It’s wonderful to see so many impassioned experts willing to share their IBM® Maximo® Asset Management knowledge to help their peers succeed. In this instance, I’m talking about Andrew Jeffery, the founder and author of Maximo Secrets. Maximo Secrets is dedicated to spreading information about all things related to Maximo applications.

Andrew Jeffery, founder and author of Maximo Secrets

We had the opportunity recently to speak with Andrew about why he shares his insights with the greater enterprise asset management (EAM) community. His dedication and love of Maximo Asset Management is apparent. Thank you, Andrew, for sharing Maximo Secrets with us. You’ve provided a wealth of information for the entire EAM community. This type of work is priceless!

How did you get involved with Maximo Asset Management?

My involvement with Maximo goes back 22 years. I started working with MRO Software around the time Maximo Asset Management V3.0 was released back in 1996, and I stayed on with IBM for almost 10 years after the acquisition. What I’ve liked about Maximo over the years is that it’s impossible to get bored. Asset management is so different across the industries, and Maximo isn’t just for physical assets, but digital assets, as well.

“You could never, ever get bored in a career in Maximo. Now that Maximo is growing into the IoT, cognitive and analytics spaces, there’s a great number of products that will inevitably be driven or linked to it at some point. I didn’t know that when I joined, of course, but looking back I think, ‘What a fantastic choice of career to have followed.’ I’m very happy to still be in it, and I hope to still be in it when I’m 70.” – Andrew Jeffery, founder and author of Maximo Secrets

Where are you currently working?

I’m a Maximo subject matter expert (SME) at ZNAPZ. They’re a Premier IBM Business Partner and European leader in asset management systems. Because of my experience as a Maximo analyst and designer, I’m likely to be the lead functional consultant on a project, but I’ll also help ZNAPZ get projects up and running, perhaps performing a quality assurance role. I’ll be involved in training other consultants and also with business development.

Why did you create Maximo Secrets?

As I’ve mentioned, I’ve been working with Maximo for decades. Over the years, there have been things I wanted to do in Maximo that I’ve done before… but it may have been years before. I’ll think I know how it works—and nine times out of 10 I’m right—but I’ll want to re-test it just to make certain it works the way I remember. I’m writing things down and documenting it so I won’t have to test again next time.

But it’s evolved beyond that. I thought, “If I’m doing all this re-testing, then everyone else is doing this re-testing, too.” So while I do Maximo Secrets for my main audience—me!—I like to provide the same sort of materials to my colleagues at ZNAPZ and anyone who is a Maximo client or doing Maximo consulting. It’s a gift: my way of leaving something behind for people to use into the future.

As Maximo changes with add-ons, industry solutions, mobile applications, standard integrations and, of course, an extensive configuration capability, I’ll aim to drill deep into various topics to reveal nuggets of functionality that many users and practitioners will be unaware of: the secrets to Maximo.” – Andrew Jeffery, founder and author of Maximo Secrets

What I’m doing is more of a reference guide geared around the applications and their functions—Maximo clients are sitting on all this wonderful stuff but they often don’t realize it. I’m not saying how to use Maximo or why you would use a function. Although I try to introduce some of the why, my goal with Maximo Secrets is to help users piece together how all the applications are linked and reveal pieces of functionality that are sometimes tucked away and out of sight.

Do you focus on a specific Maximo function?

No, the whole blog is not focused on a specific function. But around January this year, I gave myself a New Year’s resolution: to really understand the IBM Maximo Health, Safety and Environment Manager (HSE) suite of applications once and for all. HSE is a huge, monster add-on to Maximo that I’ve dipped into and out of over the past 10 years since it came out.

I started off on HSE by doing a set of diagrams of how the applications fit together, with one overall end-to-end map. For example, hazards, precautions and lock out/tag out fit closely together, so they’re one diagram. I ended up with 30 diagrams total. I’m using the end-to-end map to provide me with a logical order. If you look at my HSE posts, there’s a color for each module to help the reader (and myself!) follow along.

That sounds like a ton of work. How often do you post?

It is time-consuming, but well worth it. I’m trying to do more—knocking out one post a week. I’ve published seven HSE posts now, I have several others just waiting to be published, which will put me more than 50 percent through HSE. Just to give you an idea: I’ve already written 188 pages—just short of 60,000 words—so it’s getting there. I think it will end up being around 350 – 400 pages by the time I’ve finished. It varies enormously—one post may be only four pages. Then one will be much longer; for example, risk assessments ended up being 22 pages. Some applications have a lot more complexity than others.

“I enjoy writing Maximo Secrets. If I didn’t enjoy it, I wouldn’t be doing it. I hope more than anything else it ends up a useful tool for everyone.” – Andrew Jeffery, founder and author of Maximo Secrets

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