Maintenance App Puts Data in Your Hand

July 21, 2016

John Deere has been one of the more aggressive OEMs on the construction mobile app front, and it recently created an app of interest to maintenance managers who use JDLink telematics.

It’s called MyMaintenance, and it enables users to view and document maintenance intervals by calendar date, or by machine engine hours, right on the job site or in the shop.

But it’s not a "Mini-Me" hand-held version of JDLink. There’s already an app for that. Rather, the MyMaintenance app is meant to complement the telematics system, according to Paul Garcia, product manager for John Deere WorkSight.

“They are two separate apps and they do different things,” Garcia says. “Virtually none of the functionality that’s in MyMaintenance is in the JDLink mobile app; the JDLink mobile app is all about monitoring machines and their performance. The MyMaintenance mobile app is complementary solution for people who want to manage and track their maintenance.

“We created a desktop version that this mobile app interacts with, called Maintenance Manager, and that’s the tool that allows customers to use either factory or custom maintenance plans,” Garcia says.

“The app recognizes the configuration of the machine by the PIN, so the user would be presented with a desired ‘factory’ option for that machine, and that’s a plan our engineers have developed to keep the machine running at its highest optimal performance.”

Users can modify the maintenance plans as they choose. The tool is also flexible enough to allow users to craft an entirely “custom” plan on their own. Garcia notes that some managers have been using it to push out maintenance intervals based on their own personal experiences, and others have been using it for daily inspections, or as a reminder to measure tracks. Users can also see when machines enrolled in Maintenance Manager are due—or past due—for maintenance.

“The mobile app is targeted to the person providing in-the-field support, so they can carry that app with them, and as they perform the maintenance, they can log it in there,” Garcia says.

Even if there is no maintenance plan assigned to the machine, the app can still collect and display what’s been done. Personnel in the office can track the information remotely.

In addition, the MyMaintenance app allows users to view equipment on a map, access parts lists (and a shopping tool that connects with dealers), and keep track of maintenance costs.

“As each maintenance task is performed, there’s an opportunity to enter in the labor cost associated with the maintenance action, or a total cost, and the system totals these for later owning and operating cost insights,” Garcia says.

Keep in mind that the app is for John Deere equipment with an active JDLink telematics subscription, but that’s a pretty big universe. Deere has over 70,000 telematics-connected machines spread over some 850 different organizations. After a May release, the app has 1,800 downloads, according to Garcia. It’s a number he expects will continue to grow.

Deere also has a complementary product called Universal Telematics that may be used for a pre-telematics Deere machine or a piece from another OEM. “It’s a way to begin to collect hours and data off that machine so you can enable maintenance by the hour, as well as calendar-based maintenance,” Garcia says. “I really think the two products go together if you want to provide maintenance tracking for your entire fleet and you don’t have telematics for that machine.”

The MyMaintenance mobile app is available for iPhone and Android devices and is available free in the iTunes Store and the Google Play Store.