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John Q. Todd Sr. Business Consultant, PMP

I hope you have spent some time looking at how Work Centers may improve user adoption.

Although they have been a staple of Maximo for some time, major enhancements have been rolled out with version 7.6.0.9 that have made the feature even more valuable.

IBM’s approach to Work Centers is similar to IBM Anywhere apps in that the role of the user in the organization drives the application’s functions. This also supports the idea that most users do not need exposure to full Maximo functionality to perform their day-to-day tasks.

If you have access to Maximo 7.6.0.9, browse to your Maximo instance and instead of /maximo, enter /maximo-x. You should arrive at the login screen. (An administrators will need to grant access to the Work Centers and Tools/Tasks just as with any other app in Maximo.)

Once granted access, you will see the Work Centers on the Welcome screen.

Using Polymer/HTML5 technology, the Work Centers respond well to the browser they are being used in… Chrome Incognito seems best to me so far. Whether the user is on a desktop, tablet, or smartphone, the presentation of Work Centers respond to the type of device and function as expected.

Maintaining a persistent network connection, whether hardwire, WiFi, or 4G remains important as with any website. Work Centers do not currently support a disconnected environment like Anywhere apps.

A typical scenario I can envision is a busy Supervisor sitting in a meeting using their smartphone to access their Work Supervision Work Center. They’ll quickly be able to view new work orders that can be approved or assigned. A swipe of the finger and the Work Order is on its way. They are no longer a bottleneck to work being performed.
That same Supervisor sitting at their desk could use the traditional Maximo access to dig deeper into the results of work orders, view result sets/KPIs, run reports, etc… all those things we are familiar with.

The Maintenance Team on the other hand would never need to see traditional Maximo applications. Rather, they’d access the Work Execution Work Center on their tablet, see the work they need to perform and continue on their way. Given a persistent network connection across the campus, they can provide updates to their work and accept new work all day long.

Users can take pictures with their device and then attach them to the work order. Work logs can be entered in a familiar “chat” structure. And all of this information is accessible to the folks using Maximo in the office in near-real time.

Changing the data delivered to the user in the Work Center is controlled by queries attached to the MXAPIxxxx Object Structures. Adjusting these default queries enable you to control the data records that are presented to the user.

Changing the content or layout of the actual Work Center is a Javascript/HTML development activity at this point. Not a difficult endeavor, but it is not as simple as creating a new Start Center Template.

So take a look! You may find as I have that interacting with Maximo in this manner makes your job fun again! Might be a good solution to bringing new user communities into Maximo. It will certainly reduce training time and user frustration.

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