Maintenance Cookbook: The (Material) Master guide to building BOMs with old parts catalogs
A Bill of Materials (BOM) is a list of the raw materials, sub-assemblies, intermediate assemblies, sub-components, parts, and the quantities of each needed to manufacture an end product. 
We love BOMs
20 years ago, Metanoia began its journey to create the best BOMs in the world, working hand-in-hand with asset-intensive businesses from many different industries.
During our journey, we learned that building and maintaining accurate BOMs solves an array of issues which disrupt businesses of all types of backgrounds. We also learned that, despite our passion, we can’t talk about BOMs on an airplane!
In this article, you will learn of Metanoia’s fast, unique, and accurate solution to build BOMs using your old parts catalogs and existing CMMS.
Bills of Materials (BOMs) can be extremely tedious to create and manage within a Computerized Maintenance Management System (CMMS). The manual entry and matching of OEM part numbers to an internal Material Master is a daunting task, which leads to gaps of parts information in the CMMS. You won’t know what parts you use, where you use them, and how many of each part you’ll need. Many asset-intensive businesses encounter the following problems when trying to create BOMs:
Finding Parts Information is hard and sometimes impossible
There’s often a heavy reliance on parts descriptions, which often are vague and incomplete. This makes parts identification difficult through the 2 traditional methods:
- Finding parts from Work Order history limits your scope of identifiable parts to those which have specifically failed in the past.
- Manually referencing the OEM Parts catalog is laborious and does not represent supersessions or changes to the asset over time.
Limited scope of understanding for parts
Parts are often used in multiple locations; either in the same asset or in different assets entirely. Without BOMs, there is no way to identify within the CMMS whether it’s a unique or a duplicate part, and where the part is used.
Lack of CMMS functionality
CMMSs do not offer intuitive BOM creation tools, so many businesses are forced to use Excel sheets which are often passed around, multi-versioned, and not kept up-to-date.
Lack of visual reference for parts information
When building and managing BOMs in Excel or a CMMS, part numbers become indistinguishable to users as there is no visual reference to parts diagrams.
Creating great BOMs is a science which requires the perfect blend of ingredients, such as OEM documentation, manufacturer part numbers, and a Material Master.
Metanoia’s solution is fueled by a combination of software (Asset Information Center) and services, which build precise BOMs with further opportunity for continuous improvement. During implementation, Metanoia also creates Interactive Parts Catalogs which can be used to streamline various aspects of maintenance and reliability.
Metanoia compiles OEM Parts Lists from catalogs
Metanoia’s services team will “digitize and index” every parts list, from every page, of all your parts catalogs. After transcribing everything into “readable” data, clients will immediately have access to all OEM Parts Lists which are then matched to the Material Master to create BOMs.
Importing to the CMMS
OEM Parts Lists can be easily exported from AIC and into the CMMS, saving hundreds of hours of manual data entry.
- Auto SKU Matching
- All parts from the OEM Parts List are auto-matched with parts found in the Material Master number.
- Within AIC, all parts that match are “activated” and their call-outs are changed to Green to provide an easy visual reference of items in the Material Master.
- Manual SKU Matching
- Additional parts that do not align with a Material Master can be easily flagged by an SME, just by looking at the call-out’s color.
- After updating the part with the correct Material Master, it will also be activated in AIC and given a green call-out
Tools for Continuous Improvement
- Notes – This commenting functionality within AIC allows for a simple, repeatable process in which Maintenance Planners and Technicians can interact with Purchasing to develop Material Master codes for critical parts that are non stocked items.
- Redlining – AIC gives users the ability to redline specific locations on a page and attach comments, documents and hyperlinks.
- Accessibility – AIC integrates with the CMMS, Document Management System (DMS) and more to create a central interface for asset documentation, user notes, and maintenance information.
Your Material Master is now tied to your OEM Parts List, which reduces reliance on Descriptions and provides more accurate methods of parts identification.
Incredible Time Savings
Having such precise data will eliminate errors which slow down the maintenance process, as well as the administrative work required to create work orders and manage inventory.
With complete BOMs, AIC’s Smart Reports will show an individual part’s usage across components and assets, providing a better understanding of inventory requirements.
- For example, you will see that “Part 123” is used in 25 pieces of equipment, and can make more informed decisions around In-Stock requirements
AIC’s Smart Reports will also identify parts not used by any equipment (ie. excess inventory), as well as which parts are only used for one asset, which becomes relevant when decommissioning assets.
Bolstered Reliability data
When adding parts to Work Orders, AIC records the transaction and the part’s Component location from the BOM. Reliability teams can use this important information to gain a better understanding of which Components (or Assemblies) are bad actors; not just which individual parts.