What Is Enterprise Asset Management (EAM)?

What Is Enterprise Asset Management (EAM)?

Enterprise asset management (EAM) is the process of tracking, managing, and analyzing asset performance and costs through the whole asset lifecycle to maximize asset life, reduce costs, optimize operations and more.










What Is EAM?


Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) is a suite of tools, practices and software – including an EAM software - that allows organizations to execute effective facility and asset management. With a comprehensive EAM process in place, organizations can effectively maintain, control and analyze their physical assets and infrastructure during all phases of the asset lifecycle, including acquisition, maintenance and disposal.

Though often compared to a computerized maintenance management system (CMMS), a robust EAM generally offers a wider range of capabilities and features, including:


  • An inventory management system
  • Document and knowledge management systems
  • Multi-site management tools
  • A purchasing management system
  • An accounting system and financial management
  • A project management system
  • Performance management tools
  • Labor management tools
  • Service contract management
  • Lockout tagout procedures



This broad suite of capabilities gives asset managers full transparency into the historical and present state of assets so they can optimize asset quality and utilization, improve uptime, reduce operational costs and ultimately increase revenue and ROI.




Maintenance Connection, Accruent's enterprise asset management software, functions fully as both a CMMS and EAM. Learn more about how it can help you reduce downtime and increase ROI for your organization.


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Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) Solution Accruent



What is the Difference Between EAM and a CMMS?

Though the terms are often used interchangeably, EAM and computerized maintenance management systems (CMMS) are very different tools.

Most broadly, a computerized maintenance management system can be considered to be a component of a broader EAM system: an EAM will always include a CMMS component, but a CMMS will not always provide the features and capabilities of an EAM. That’s because CMMS software focuses primarily on asset management and facility maintenance during the operational phase of the asset lifecycle.

EAM software, on the other hand, provides a suite of tools and features that allow organizations to track, manage and optimize facility and asset performance through the entire asset lifecycle.

That said, many modern CMMS systems have expanded to offer EAM-level capabilities. Maintenance Connection, in particular, can be used as both a CMMS and an EAM tool.


EAM Software and SaaS

EAM software SaaS features MC Express

When CMMS and EAM software first appeared, all asset management systems were based on on-premise hardware. Now, there has been a significant shift to the cloud. Cloud-based SaaS solutions offer many benefits that make a SaaS solution ideal for modern asset-heavy businesses, including:

  • Maximized integrations: Modern organizations must integrate information across systems, devices and software tools. The cloud provides a connectable ecosystem in which these integrations are easily achieved.
  • More reliability: If you have a strong provider, a SaaS solution will provide fast uptimes, increased ease-of-use and more reliable availability across devices.
  • Scalability: It is difficult to scale across sites and facilities using hardware. A mobile-friendly SaaS solution maximizes scalability and flexibility across sites and devices.
  • Lower maintenance cost: SaaS EAM solutions are usually run on monthly or annual subscriptions that require significantly less up-front investment.
  • Increased security: Maintenance Connection and other EAM software automatically updates patches and other security concerns, so the burden will never fall on your IT department.




Benefits of Enterprise Asset Management (EAM)


The right EAM can help your organization track, manage, analyze and optimize your assets through all stages of the asset lifecycle, from acquisition to disposal. This can lead to marked improvements in transparency and preventive maintenance capabilities, which translates to saved time, increased efficiency and lower costs. An EAM can also help your organization:


Streamline Inventory Management

Efficient maintenance requires optimized inventory management. An EAM can facilitate this with barcode scanning, inventory tracking capabilities and visibility into parts utilization and cost.

Maximize Asset Lifetime

The historical data, real-time data and analytical tools in an EAM can allow you to extend the availability, reliability and usability of your physical assets, thereby increasing both efficiency and ROI.

Extend Asset Lifecycle

The historical data, real-time data and analytical tools in an EAM can allow you to extend the availability, reliability and usability of your physical assets, thereby increasing both efficiency and ROI.

Work From Anywhere

Mobile, multi-site capabilities and features – including SaaS or hybrid deployments, smartphone capabilities and the ability to read meters, capture electronic signatures and use bar codes or RFID – can maximize remote capabilities and facilitate social distancing.

Minimize Downtime

An EAM an automatically track downtime and allow users to manually log downtime during breakdowns. This can minimize communication concerns and costs associated with unplanned downtime.



Easily connect your EAM to financial software to streamline audits and sync with finance or other relevant departments.


Asset Data

The right EAM will include all information about your physical assets in one centralized system, including repair histories, energy usage, audit trails, purchase order, lifecycle costs and warranty records.

Modernize Maintenance Operations

AI-powered remote monitoring and enhanced asset tracking and traceability allows for modern operations and maximized decision-making.

Enable Benchmarking

An EAM will provide visibility into maintenance performance across your organization to enable benchmarking, best practice sharing and performance management.


Enterprise asset management (EAM) features scalable and configurable


  • It used to take us three to four hours to go search for paper records. With Maintenance Connection, it’s almost immediate. As soon as you run the report, [the information] is there. Now we’re able to sit in a conference room and pull it up on the screen for the auditor to view in real time.

    Maintenance Manager

  • Before Maintenance Connection, we were having problems [maintaining] our vehicles… Now the maintenance technicians can make sure that all of the fleet is being serviced and that everything’s in working order. We’re able to keep up to date with all the required maintenance, whether it be weekly, quarterly or annually.

    Facility and Asset Management Clerk

  • With help from Maintenance Connection…we can look at staff’s productivity. We can see where the work’s being put in, whether it be a service report, a work order, a project…We are able to look and see where we’re deficient and then learn from there whether we need extra staffing.

    Biomed Support Technician

  • Before Maintenance Connection, it was very time-consuming to hand write these written reports and get information relayed. Now, with literally the click of a button, technicians can input their labor reports, their hours, equipment downtime, and anybody all over our facility can log in in real time.

    CMMS Coordinator



Features of EAM


Work Order Management

Key EAM features – like automated purchases, part tracking and big-picture metrics – provide technicians and administrators with the information they need to effective schedule work orders, diagnose concerns, assign technicians and stay ahead of upcoming work.

Asset Lifecycle Management

A robust EAM can provide the asset information and documentation– including MRO information, maintenance history, work orders and historical information and analytics – needed to decrease costs, reduce asset failures and increase operational efficiency through the entire lifecycle.

MRO Inventory and Supply Chain Management

MRO inventory costs can skyrocket as team members struggle to locate inventory, order missing parts and complete relevant work orders on time. Full MRO inventory management through your EAM software can solve these concerns, lower costs and simplify asset maintenance.

Safety Regulation

The safety of your team members is of upmost importance – and managing safety and compliance can be particularly difficult in the context of social distancing and COVID-19. Your EAM software can help by providing straightforward, easily accessible safety requirements for every job, simplifying audits and reducing safety risk using incident analysis and process change management.

Labor Management

In order to make the most out of your robust EAM software, your employees need to be continuously trained and certified. Your EAM system can streamline this process by increasing accessibility of training procedures, simplifying audit logs and giving your managers a bird’s eye view of your team’s safety training progress.

Service Contract Management

Simplify contract management with your customers, vendors, partners and employees to mitigate risks, maximize compliance, increase ROI and decrease contract-related costs and inefficiencies.

Financial Management

Get a comprehensive look at your finances and cut costs by streamlining key processes like preventive maintenance, calibration management, work order management and purchase order and facility rental management.

Reporting and Analytics

Big-picture analytics can help you optimize your operations and identify areas of concern before they cause downtime or other costly problems. EAM software can help you extract meaningful data to pinpoint preventive maintenance needs and manage KPIs. This asset data can also be used to maximize uptime, increase employee productivity and help your organization make better business decisions.

Vendor Management

Your EAM can help with vendor management by tracking information like certificates of insurance (COIs) and activity history. It can also help you rate vendors so stakeholders can compare performance and develop a preferred vendor list.

Document and Knowledge Management

By centralizing all asset-related information and documents, an EAM can improve the quality of work from your team while simultaneously improving their efficiency and identifying any areas of concern.

Financial Management

Gain a comprehensive understanding of your finances by connecting to your accounting software or other key tools. Streamline processes and implement preventive maintenance to cut costs across your organization.

Safety and Compliance Regulation

The safety of your team members is of upmost importance – and managing safety and compliance can be particularly difficult in the context of social distancing and COVID-19. Your EAM software can help by streamlining audits, demystifying safety requirements and using analytics to reduce your safety risk.


FAQ: Enterprise Asset Management


What is an enterprise asset management system?

An enterprise asset management system is generally a combination of software, best practices and systems used to maintain an optimize facility equipment and asset life. The goal? To decrease costs, extend asset life and improve utilization.

There are many components of a comprehensive enterprise asset management system, including:

  • Work order management
  • Asset maintenance
  • Supply chain management
  • Service contact management
  • Employee and scheduling management
  • Environmental, health and safety (EHS) initiatives

You can learn more about an EAM here.


What is work and asset management?

Work and asset management refers to the processes and tools that are used to effectively maintain and optimize facility assets. Generally, an organization will look into new work and asset management strategies when their:

  • Physical assets not functioning optimally
  • Fixed asset or assets are not lasting their full lifecycles
  • Plans are inefficient and labor productivity is low
  • Managers and decision-makers experience lack of insight into asset and maintenance performance
  • Inventory management is inefficient

This will usually take the form of a computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) or an enterprise asset management (EAM) system. When choosing the right system for your business, make sure that you consider factors like user adoption, your budget and your technological capabilities. You can learn more about how to choose the right CMMS for your business here.


What is the purpose of a CMMS system?

The purpose of a computerized maintenance management, or CMMS, is to optimize facility and asset management during the operational part of the asset lifecycle. If you choose the right computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) for your business, it can help you:

  • Automate and maintain work orders.
  • Increase equipment reliability.
  • Streamline maintenance operations and costs.
  • Improve inventory accuracy.
  • Maintain industry-specific regulatory compliance.


What is enterprise asset management Gartner?

A Gartner Magic Quadrant is a representation of research in a specific market that attempts to show the relative positions of the market’s competitors. A Magic Quadrant places market participants in quadrants based on their completeness of vision (“How complete is the product?”) and their ability to execute (“Are they bringing in new customers and serving the existing ones well?”).

In the Gartner’s 2019 Enterprise Asset Management software evaluations, Maintenance Connection was one of only four products whose position in the Magic Quadrant improved in both their vision and ability to execute. Significantly, Maintenance Connection was the only product to improve its position while also being rated highly for its ability to execute.

Among the attributes that were rated highly by Gartner were:

  • The enterprise asset management system’s ability to understand customer needs
  • Maintenance Connection’s position in the Accruent portfolio and the company’s demonstrated ability to build out and integrate future new functionality.
  • Accruent’s integration of our engineering document management solution with our EAM, allowing maintenance technicians to access asset technical documents directly from work orders, leading to improved fix times, reduced searching for current documents and improved safety of maintenance workers.


Why is enterprise asset management important?

EAM is important because it can help businesses effectively maintain, control and analyze their physical assets and infrastructure during all phases of the asset lifecycle, including acquisition, maintenance and disposal. This kind of effective asset and facility management is crucial for profitable operations, particularly for businesses in asset-intensive industries.

These organizations generally manage a wide range of assets, including manufacturing equipment, transportation fleets, IT equipment, pipelines, HVAC systems, building and vehicles. Proper management and maintenance of these assets is necessary for operations and productions, and effective enterprise asset management can help:

  • Resolve issues before they arise.
  • Improve asset utilization.
  • Fight concerns related to an aging asset infrastructure.
  • Improve maintenance management practices, helping organizations meet ever-changing complexity, health and safety requirements.
  • Consolidate operational tools for increased transparency and ease-of-use.
  • Implement smart asset monitoring using AI-powered devices.


Who uses enterprise asset management software?

An enterprise asset management software (EAM) can be used by many employees in asset-heavy companies. As far as industries go, enterprise asset management software is often used by utility managers, energy managers and manufacturers. Within each of these verticals, an EAM software can be used by many employees, including:

  • Operators
  • Technicians
  • Plant managers
  • Decision-makers and C-suite
  • Inventory managers
  • Maintenance manager

The ultimate goal? To increase asset-related transparency, to decrease delays, to stop reactive maintenance practices and to resolve difficulty meeting KPIs and metrics.


What should I know about enterprise asset management software?

When thinking about enterprise asset management software, it’s important to keep in mind that there is no one-size-fits-all EAM software solution. Instead, the right enterprise asset management software for your business will depend on factors like:

  • Your budget, both short term and long term.
  • The technological capabilities of your IT team, which will help determine whether you choose an on-premise or a cloud EAM software.
  • User adoption and which EAM software has the features that your technicians and operators will need.
  • Your vendor relationship, as the right vendor will provide ongoing training and support.
  • Integrations and your existing systems


What is the top EAM software?

There are many industry-leading EAM software options – but, once again, deciding on the right solution for your business will depend largely on your team’s unique preferences and needs. You can find a complete guide to choosing the right software solution for your business here.



Related EAM Software Concepts and Resources


Preventive Maintenance

Learn more about the important of preventive maintenance and predictive maintenance practices.


Reactive Maintenance

Reactive maintenance can increase downtime, decrease efficiency, drive up costs and more. Learn how to avoid reactive maintenance mistakes.


Accruent Analytics and Maintenance Connection

Learn how Accruent Analytics can maximize the insights gained from Maintenance Connection EAM


MC Express

Learn how Maintenance Connection’s mobile interface can increase your efficiency using features like native barcoding, labor tracking, asset tracking, in-the-field access to documentation and more.


CMMS and EAM Adoption

You must maximize adoption in order to make the most of your powerful enterprise asset management software. Learn how.


Maintenance Connection in 2019 Gartner EAM Magic Quadrant

Maintenance Connection rated among top three Challenger products ina Gartner Magic Quadrant.


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What Is Enterprise Asset Management (EAM)?