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Asset and PPM software design #73270
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Herman Moes Offline OP
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Dear all,
I am new to this forum and am grateful for all the support and information everyone gives each other in all aspects I have come across. Highly dedicated people and thumbs up to all of you.

I am currently finalizing a new software I am writing for PPM and asset management that includes a new form of tracking and maintenance protocols,We include all GMDN and UDI according the international standards.
I am interested to know if any of you find missing items or lacking flexibility in the programs or system currently used that was bought or home grown made package that you feel is missing.

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73273
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Welcome to the forum, Herman. smile

So ... you're writing a new program, and you want to know what features you need to include?

Originally Posted by Herman Moes

... a new form of tracking and maintenance protocols


Care to elaborate a little about that one? think

Lastly (for now), what language and platform(s) are you using?

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73283
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There has been much discussion around this topic on here over the years. Have you taken a look at the Biomed Databases forum? think

I could also add (and will) that we have seen a few "false starts" as well - an enthusiastic couple of posts about plans for a new system and then ... well, let's just say that we're still waiting for more news. whistle

OK Herman, I notice that you say you are now finalizing your new system; so maybe I'm a bit late here - but anyway (and perhaps of interest to anyone else just starting out) here are a few random thoughts about points to consider when embarking on a new system (most of which I have probably mentioned before in the forum mentioned above):-

1) First of all, ask yourself what, exactly, you want your system to do. A sketch (or more likely, a number of sketches) with paper and pencil will probably be a good idea. Then go away for a couple of days and mull it all over. It's best that you try to get it right at the onset, otherwise you can look forward to a great deal of extra work in putting things right later on!

2) Web-based, hand-held (Smart phone, and/or other device), or stand-alone (PC etc.)?

3) Next, switch off the computer and sit down with pencil and paper and work out how you plan to organise your database. You will probably need a relational database, with the Equipment as the primary table; in which case you need to give serious thought to the format of your equipment codes. More advanced (complicated) systems will need many relational databases, especially if you plan to include Parts (stock control) and what-have-you.

4) The primary table should be indexed by your Key Field. You may think that it's all very well using a "universal" (or "global") equipment numbering system, but I would (and do) disagree. The interesting (?) thing about these "international standards" is that there are so many "unique" systems to choose from. For example:-

- CIVAB
- ECRI
- GMDN
- UDI
- UMDNS

... to name just a few! So I strongly recommend that you retain full control of your Key Field (that is, design your own); otherwise, not only shall you most likely end up choosing the "wrong" universal format (once it becomes no longer the "flavour of the month"), but also what will you do if (when) "they" change it ... or indeed, a new one comes along?

5) Is your system going to be Local (for use in your hospital only), or Global (as in, "Hello World")? If the latter, you need to ponder early on about how to ensure that the architecture of your system will suit easy (a relative term, of course) expansion in ways that may not be foreseeable at first - in other words, an "Open Architecture" (keeping "expansion hooks" in your main tables).

6) In any case, think about expansion:- importing, exporting, migrating and manipulation of data. Also the possibility of relating to (linking with) other sources of data. And don't forget that any database is only as good as the data you can extract from it - in other words, Reports (and again, possibly, the exporting of data).

Yes; there is a great deal to think about. Just take things in small, logical steps. Also remember that there's a lot to be said for simply starting off with a spreadsheet (eg, Excel), and developing the basics there - you will find that after using that for a while, the overall arrangements of your data will become apparent. It also gives you a chance to clean up your data. And in Excel, data structures and formats are quickly and easily changed - this may not be so easy once you commence serious development using a database manager. smile

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Geoff Hannis] #73292
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Herman Moes Offline OP
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Hi Geoff,
Thanks for your elaborate details, where do I start.....
Platform:English - windows for now.
Currently a PC and enterprise version that in final stage will be web based connected for mobile use. This will allow you to scan codes with your phone and send them to a work order.

Importing and migration of items is made easy, a stock keeper could add an asset but needs to be acknowledged by required stakeholders prior it becoming "live" , depending on your authority in the program you can move an device but may need to be approved by an accepting manager in an department or assigned manager. This way Biomed knows where it is used also. flags for all movement come up if you will move devices around.

Yes the :universal" had us thinking a bit and we plan to make unique coding based on facilities. and each asset code to be linked to corresponding "universal" codes in the software itself. As we intend to provide it all over we start with country code - facility code ( based on CoC).- asset code - unique UDI and serial. This way everyone can ID a device to their own facility and thus no lost/founds issues. Or "borrowed" devices that move to elsewhere.
The database is active and makes it easy to change or clean up if you are authorized. Manipulating date is less easy made to prevent checks "done" that may not have been performed. Thus not adding an EST to a certain device may not allow you to move on through the program.

It will be a Global "hello World" version. database can currently build for 5 mln items per facility, this so instruments can be included after adding a 2 D matrix.

All pages are open in architecture to ensure expansions are possible.

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Geoff Hannis] #73293
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Herman Moes Offline OP
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Language is " C Sharp " by the way

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73294
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Interesting. smile

I note that you are including (inflicting?) a fair number of permissions in there. All to the good, really; although I must admit that my own approach has always been to assume that the user (generally lonely biomeds) had sufficient mukh - المخابرات - to make use of the system - access to the "tools" - without too much "control" (not the same as error-trapping, by the way). "Giving them enough rope", you might say. whistle

However, as our world has become nowadays - increased levels of regulation, litigious environment, and what-have-you, I acknowledge that a new system needs to include access permissions at various levels and for various operations.

It seems that we agree on the issue of international numbering systems devised by others - GMDN and its friends; a look-up table (cross-references) is probably the best approach.

But your own internal code(s) sounds a bit long, by the way. How many characters is that? And, what about location (department, room number) within each facility? Why not just use a unique number internally within the program? But changing location by "simply" changing a few characters within the unique equipment string (have I got that right?) sounds good.

OK, more questions. Where is the data held? On a server at each site?

2D matrix? Relational database? think

Parts usage and stock control?

And what about PM? Does your system include PM Procedures? How do you handle that (those)?

Is C# any good for database management then? I have never tried it myself (and, at my stage of the game, am hardly ever likely to), but I used to "enjoy" C back in the Good Old Days (of DOS). As you probably know, a lot of the languages back then (dBASE et al), as well as many DOS commands themselves, were written in C.

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73296
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Does your new system have a name yet?

How about GateKeeper ... due to the permission barriers (or gates) you mention. smile

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73310
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Hi Geoff,
Internal codes are actually short but has a lot of room for additional data. Thus easily to allocate items to areas.
Currently the date is held in the facility, if they have a maintenance contract with us we keep the same to ensure per user we are able to locate a device incae they want us to come over.
As we include instruments in facilities that do not allow large codes, we can mark them with 2-D matrix to allow track and trace that we can also do. as CSSD program. Part and stock control is included, and has space for pictures of the actual parts used or in stock if they want to use it.
Yes we have a name, hope to announce it through linked in soon so we can set a launch date to go along with it.
Currently I keep the name to myself as we need to register it for protection.

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73311
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Geoff Hannis Offline
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Wow! It all sounds very serious.

But, with regards to your opening post, if we don't know what your system does, and what features you have already included, how can we sensibly (and briefly) suggest further *additions?

So, you are a maintenance contractor and have developed a system you plan to use as and when other contracts are won? Good; that's how I started off myself back in 1990 (dBASE IV back then). Does anyone out where you are still remember Nafitha? Those were the days!

But you are also hoping to sell the system to others? That's something I never achieved (or even chose to try). frown

Anyway, Good Luck! smile

* For instance, linkage to RFID.

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73313
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Herman Moes Offline OP
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Our system in short:
Creates unique bar codes for devices, links them to all data required for Biomeds, keeps track of all maintenance and history incl. where you got the parts from and contacts. Produces work orders that can be flagged internally or can be flagged to us in case of job requirements. flags up maintenance to departments to prevent them using it prior maintenance, allows kit exported for repair, and shows the status of repair . so a department head can see if a piece of kit is in your shop, if you already started, parts ordered , expected arrival parts, etc.
for the place we work in its a non sell item, as we provide it free of cost if they are in contract with us.yes we would sell it outside of the GCC for a low price just to get many out. It develops through a facility depending on the type and modules can be modified to a specific type of facility. Actually we think to look into having a couple of people try i out for us if they can contribute in a way, even if its marketing to get our name out.

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73314
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a per your * RFID, yes we include this also. we apply these for placing in orthodontic models or prostheses as labels tend to disappear.

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73315
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Geoff Hannis Offline
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Sounds impressive! smile

What resources would a Beta tester need (in case anyone else on here may be interested in giving it a try, and offering feedback)?

I doubt that I could offer such help myself, as my own rigs are a bit, shall we say, antiquated. whistle

Otherwise, if you really want to Conquer the World, you could consider giving your system away; and then, if you insist, charge for add-ons, extra services, updates or whatever later on (if and when users become "hooked" - not that I would encouraged that sort of thing myself, of course).

It all dpends how "corporate" the exercise is (or has been), how it is being financed, how much you have invested in it, what your future plans are, and so forth ...

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73316
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Herman Moes Offline OP
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I send you an email,
Beta testers do not need much. any windows will do. it is well programmed and thus small.
We tried a 2002 HP running XP sp 1. no issues. possessor was pushing 38%. printed perfect labels on the Epson parallel port printer. i could harldy see my own laptop using more power to run at all (is dedicated for this purpose though as this will be sued to go to off site).
We will start running it next week internally with 4 users and give it a lot of shit. from there we will select a beta tester or 2.
NDA required.

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73317
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Herman Moes Offline OP
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all paid out of pocked to so far, so will either get rich or divorced trying. LOL.

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73319
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Ah, that's what I like about the young ... so full of enterprise, optimism, and energy! smile

Meanwhile, have you noticed this old thread? think

For some reason, I can't resist a feeling of déjà vu!

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73330
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Neil Porter Offline
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There are quite a few programs available from established companies, how will you differ in terms of applications and price. We looked at many products and decided that we would have a system built from the ground up for all of the maintenance department not just bme..


If you think hiring professionals is expensive, try hiring amateurs!
Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Neil Porter] #73332
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Herman Moes Offline OP
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Hi Neil,
The difference between my program and other is 20K - 50K+ to start with, as I aim to be less arrogant that the "established Companies".
Am interested to hear what you are building up and what you will include. If its interesting I can add it to ours also.
I plan to provide some contributing people free software. Geoff already made an impression and gave good ideas, he may get lucky. LOL.

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Geoff Hannis] #73333
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Herman Moes Offline OP
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Hi Geoff,

Yes I looked at the old threads, interesting, but fails due to "non commercial" as most want to benefit from others work, without providing proper support and makes people feel left out. Open source is always doomed for this kind of stuff as I had a package made before for a different industry, some started "tweaking" and failure started happening. this gave the program a bad name.

Yes the "young" and enterprise. I wish I could knock off 25 years of my age.

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73334
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And so it begins
.https://www.linkedin.com/in/herman-moes-83099521/detail/recent-activity/shares/

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73336
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I'm guessing that anyone would need to be part of LinkedIn (the daily nag) for that to work, Herman. smile

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73337
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Originally Posted by Herman Moes

... most want to benefit from others work


Yes. Many take, but only a few give. But most simply don't have the time (that is, are too busy "fighting fires" and fixing kit) to contribute.

Originally Posted by Herman Moes

... without providing proper support


Proper support can only be given (attempted) if users provide feedback (bug reports). In my experience, this has rarely been the case. It would be (is) nice to have fancy websites that can host updates, whole teams of developers and so forth. But such things have to be supported financially. But even then, the real development is generally left to a solitary (quirky and obsessive?) coder!

Originally Posted by Herman Moes

... makes people feel left out


How many times have appeals for collaboration been made (on here)? Answer:- many. And how many responses:- one or two. And how long has such team-work continued? A few weeks, at most. But see also my first answer above (ie, "too busy").

Or were you referring there to the user? If so, see the answer above ("bug reports" - and, even, suggestions)!

This is not a moan, by the way* ... but simply relaying my own experiences. frown

If you have a development team, then you are lucky indeed. I hope they will still be around in twenty months (years) time!

Good Luck! smile

* Personally, I am more than happy to keep on paddling my own canoe (ploughing my own furrow, or whatever). I am so used to that now, I wouldn't have it any other way. As Frank Ocean has said:- "Work hard in silence; let your success be your noise"! - a mantra for the Lonely Biomed, surely?

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73338
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Originally Posted by Herman Moes

I looked at the old threads ...


But did you come across this one? think

I still like the idea of "turning databases on their head(s)", and having each equipment asset (what I have always liked to call "maintainable item") carry its own data. And even be able to make its own plea for help. In a word:- proactive!

With RFID tags and other (hopefully cheap) magic devices, realizing that dream may soon be on the cards.

Your next project maybe, Herman. smile

BTW, such an approach (a tag, a little box, a chip inside the casing, or whatever) has the added benefit of restricting "maintainable items" (items on the database) to those physically large enough to hold or contain the transceiver. I have always lumped together smaller items as "All oxygen flowmeters in Ward such-and-such" etc., or, if all else fails, "Miscellaneous and Minor Equipment" (MME).

To my mind, any items (such as surgical instruments, for example) that are not deemed worthy of scheduled PM are not "maintainable items". Sure, they need to be tracked, but I consider that to be a "property management" (or possibly, QA, or "infection control") responsibility.

In short:- if it needs PM, it goes on the biomed database; otherwise it doesn't - to avoid cluttering it up with hundreds (thousands?) of items that you may never actually find again anyway ... so why waste time accounting for them?

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73340
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Herman Moes Offline OP
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we have software for track and tracing instruments.
Not my own package but we work with: https://www.besco.be/en/ for this.

For Biomed.
Soon you can walk by a device and with your phone check all and send a message to the department if required of flag it for any reason.
Hope i don't run out of cash for all I want to do that's roaming in my head before I can realize it all. lol.

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73341
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Or better still ... the device sends you the message as you walk by! smile

See earlier post.

PS: cash may not be the limiting factor; how about time? That is, whilst you're busy with your current work (and thoughts), the rest of the world (and its technologies) marches on! Sometimes it's hard to remain focussed.

About that link:- yes, laser-marking; very nice (and probably not cheap). But when I look at stuff like that, I (and no doubt, a few others) tend to have thoughts along the lines of:- "Yes; but how well would (does) it work in the middle of Africa"* (I even have thoughts like that about stuff like today's Land-Rovers, with all their "gadgets", by the way)? think

Now I understand what you meant earlier by 2-D Matrix. Sorry for being so slow on the uptake (it's an "age" thing, you know).

Anyway, tracking of surgical instruments (although important) is a whole different ball-game to carrying out PM on electro-medical equipment. I advocate using separate databases for each function, and under the remit of different departments (viz, CSS and Biomed, respectively).

* For example. Many other places in dire need of help are available.

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73349
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Totally agree on the separate database as it follows a different route in a facility.
Track and trace will be a while before it works in this area, as accountable etc.
Could elaborate but being a public forum I need to stay political correct to prevent issues coming my way.

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73352
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Geoff Hannis Offline
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Sounds like you've done the course(s) then, Herman. rolleyes

Hint:- all non-PC (aka interesting) stuff can always be sent via a Private Message.

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73354
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Neil Porter Offline
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Herman, I can walk by any equipment and check the full history on my phone, as can the end-user who can also check the status of equipment that has been sent to the workshop. Nothing magical there, design for biomeds by biomeds, plus do all the other stuff for the maintenance guys as generally they need help.

Last edited by Neil Porter; . Reason: Spelling mistake

If you think hiring professionals is expensive, try hiring amateurs!
Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Neil Porter] #73355
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Sounds impressive, Neil. smile

But your post took me back to 1992. I was lodging at a biomed shop (in the UK) where technician R was enthusing about their computer "system" (which was a bit rudimentary, even for those days) ... "It's really great; look, it does this. And look, it does that" ... etc., etc.

There I was nodding away, hoping that I was showing the expected degree of appreciation.

After a while, technician P, the other resident guy, had had enough:- "Yes; but does it do the [censored] work"?

[silence] rolleyes

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Neil Porter] #73390
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Herman Moes Offline OP
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Neil,
Are you in an MOH facility?

Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73392
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Herman, the answer is no. I am in the Ministry of Defence & Aviation.


If you think hiring professionals is expensive, try hiring amateurs!
Re: Asset and PPM software design [Re: Herman Moes] #73395
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Ah ok, I had contact here with a guy: Dr. Ahmed Faroq , he jumps between jeddah, and riyadh. infection control guy


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