You may think that you have usable information…

...but, you don’t have it and you probably can’t get it.
We explore the importance of understanding the right data and where to get it from.

There is an intuitive and perpetual myth that organizations will get better data over time and be able to make better decisions. It started in the 1960’s with the development of reliability analysis and lives on getting stronger by the day. One or two people who really know a thing or two about the subject have explained the problem. Howard L Resnikoff (The famous Resnikoff conundrum) in his paper Mathematical Aspects of Reliability-Centered Maintenance published in 1978 says this in his introduction about the availability of data in the real world:

  • One of the most important contributions of the Reliability-Centered Maintenance Program is its explicit recognition that certain types of information heretofore actively sought as a product of maintenance activities are, in principle, as well as in practice, unobtainable.
  • The more effective the [existing maintenance] program is, the fewer critical failures will occur, and correspondingly less information about operational failures will be available to the maintenance policy designer.
  • That the optimal policy must be designed in the absence of critical failure information, utilizing only the results of component tests and prior experience with related but different complex systems, is an apparently paradoxical situation.
  • Moreover, the applicability of statistical theories of reliability to the very small populations of large-scale complex systems typically encountered in practice is questionable and calls for some discussion.
  • Each of these distinct viewpoints leads to the conclusion that maintenance policy design is necessarily conducted with extremely limited information of dubious reproducibility, and we must consider why it is nevertheless possible, and how it can be done.”


David Smith in his book, Reliability Maintainability and Risk (2005), had this to say.
“The validity of repeatable component failures has become controversial. The extremely wide variability of failure rates of allegedly identical components under supposedly identical operating and environmental conditions is now acknowledged.”

This is at a component level. At the equipment and system level in an operational environment with human factors involved the variability and potential failure modes increase exponentially.

We have probably always known this (if we think hard enough about it), but it is incredibly difficult to get the wider organization to recognize it. Especially when there are plenty of organizations selling IT solutions that collect and analyze data in order to provide autonomous ‘information driven’ decision making.

Don’t get us wrong, data has its place, but we recommend organizations take a blended approach. The organizational knowledge embedded in the workforce is the most underrated and underused information resource, that you are already paying for. The trick is to know how to exploit it effectively for decision-making. Asking the right questions is where we start. Contact us now to find how we can help decision-making in your organization.

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Damien Carter

Over his 28 plus year span in the industrial sectors with working technical backgrounds in Project & Construction Management, Asset Operations and Maintenance Reliability Management, and being certified in various courses of study; Damien has gained the knowledge and experience and has had proven successes throughout his tenure in the Oil, Gas, Petro-Chemical and Construction sectors. Establishing his-self in the various sectors, Damien’s first experience and success started in the Construction Sector in estimating engineering. This was the stepping stone for Damien and has paved the way for his passion and continued success in supporting People, Process, and Systems in an organization.

Damien has held positions in local, international and multi-national corporations and comes from a working background in the fields of environmental, operations, project and construction management, operations maintenance and reliability management, planning, supervisory management, and has proven his abilities to succeed in each field.

Richard Ardolino

Rich was an Engineer and Project Manager professional at the New York Power Authority for over 30-years. In addition to being the first Project Manager for the Niagara Project Upgrade, Rich rose to be the Vice President of Engineering having started in Operations Engineering decades earlier. Rich went on to be Vice President, Transmission and Substation at AECOM responsible for hundreds of millions of dollars in design and construction. Rich joined Woodhouse Partnership, North America and participates in aligning organization towards ISO 55000 and many reliability studies supporting DST.

Asset Management



John Woodhouse

Our Asset Management Academy is pleased to announce 2023 dates for our Masterclass – the benchmark for personal development and competency recognition for Asset Management Professionals 

Aleck Santamaría De La Cruz

Executive in Operational Excellence, Asset Management and Best Practices in Projects, Operations and Maintenance in the Energy and Industrial Sector.
Consultant, Instructor and International Lecturer on issues related to project management (risk management), operational reliability, strategic management of operations, maintenance, Asset Management in the energy sector (ISO 55001) and Applied Data Analytics.
PMP, CMRP, IAM and CAMA certifications, being recognized by the SMRP in 2019 as CMRP of the Year

George Galambos

George has over twenty-five years of experience as a consulting engineer providing design, planning, program and project management, and strategic asset management services for asset-intensive organizations in the Americas, Africa, and the Middle East. His primary focus has been in the public infrastructure sector; as a result, he has intimate knowledge of the assets, processes, and resources necessary to deliver and sustain safe, reliable services to the customers of public asset-owning organizations.

George has assisted organizations with the development of PAS 55, ISO 55000, and GFMAM AM Landscape aligned asset management systems (AMS), has performed gap analyses of their AMS against industry standards and best practices, and has guided them through the creation of strategic asset management plans (SAMPs), asset management plans (AMPs), AM policy and supporting documents. He has undertaken asset risk modelling to ascertain organizations’ capability to sustain their desired levels of service. George has performed asset health-informed lifecycle cost modelling and forecasting capital and operational expenditures over near and long-term planning horizons.

John Woodhouse

With 30 years’ experience in utilities, oil & gas, transport and other sectors, John is one of the most widely known experts in integrated asset management projects for some of the largest companies in the world.

John is a Founder and Life Fellow of the IAM; he has written 4 books, chaired the development of BSI PAS55 and represents the UK on the ISO55000 committee.

He also led the international MACRO and SALVO collaboration projects in optimised asset management decision-making.

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