Effective Alarm Systems Management

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Written by
James Latham

Effective Alarm Systems Management is a major contributor to the successful performance of businesses that operate complex, networked assets which are often located in remote locations.


In this short article we discuss why Alarm Systems Management is now more important than ever. In today’s age of data, sharing knowledge on alarm systems management is becoming a necessity, read on to find out more and to see how PDSVISION can help you, through training and Gap analysis.

Data and alarms

In today’s ever-increasing reliance on digital information, the management of asset performance data becomes more onerous as data volumes increase with added complexity and data types.

Every new asset purchased has a higher level of condition monitoring functionality than before, which is great, but without effective management of the condition monitoring data created, the additional functionality (and therefore benefit) is wasted and can increase problems down the line.

Alarm Systems Management

Environment and alarms

To add to this scenario, in recent years, assets are now subject to more volatile and extreme environments that can lead to assets activating (or tripping) more frequently, thereby generating more alarm-related data than when operating in more benign environments.

Effects on performance

It is not surprising then that for Control Rooms set-up and operational from just a few years ago, managing Alarms can easily become overwhelmed by too much data in todays’ working environment. This leads to not only inefficient performance but can increase the potential for major failures occurring and put too much burden on the Control Room Operators.

Could training help you?

To increase your knowledge on this subject and to become more informed, we would recommend taking part in some specific ASM training. PDSVISION has for many years had a close working relationship with EEMUA (The Engineering Equipment and Material Users Association) and provide Alarms System Management Training that aligns with EEMUA’s 191 – the globally accepted and leading guide to good practice for all aspects of alarm systems.

Could a Gap Analysis help you?

To complement this training, PDSVISION also offers Alarms Systems Management consultancy. For example, PDSVISION have recently completed an Alarm Systems Management Gap Analysis, on behalf of a major UK Utility Company, to determine how their Alarm Management policies compare with Industry best practices (ie EEMUA 191) and to recommend remedial actions to achieve parity with these best practices.

A typical Gap Analysis would take 3 days to complete with a 1-day (usually on-site where possible) Discovery event with the active Alarm Systems stakeholders engaged in the discovery process. Topics covered include items such as:

  • Policy
  • Justification
  • Measurement
  • Ergonomic Design
  • Operator Competence
  • Management System

Based on the outcome of the Discovery event and working in conjunction with the client, the Gap Analysis identifies, recommends and reports on key areas of Alarms System Management policy and process improvement where appropriate. PDSVISION then work in conjunction with clients to deliver the recommended actions arising from the Gap Analysis.


In this article we have discussed why your Alarms can be overactive, and the impact this has on your operational environment. We also discussed how training and consultancy (specifically a Gap analysis) can increase your knowledge and awareness of Alarm Systems Management to help you improve operational performance and align with industry best practice.

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