As manufacturers strive to operate smarter, faster and leaner, modern maintenance staff are often tasked to do more with less. Upper management may view this as a sensible decision, since maintenance is the largest fixed cost in manufacturing. This is an unfortunate choice, because maintenance management is a proven driver of greater uptime. When maintenance budgets drop, efficiency falls, and so do the odds of increasing uptime.
Periodic measurements generally show that efficiency under a “Lean maintenance” approach can range from 40% to a low of 10%. That is far below the highest achievable maintenance workforce efficiency, which at least one study has benchmarked as nearly 75%1. Such maintenance workforce efficiency also boosts operating productivity and profitability.
If you are involved with maintenance management, you likely recognize the validity of this argument. The question then becomes, where does your maintenance department stand in terms of these statistics? If you are not using a computerized maintenance management system (CMMS), or if you don’t have a service and support structure to extract maximum value, chances are good you are not achieving anything close to 75% maintenance efficiency.
As a result, you may be experiencing top-down pressure to reduce maintenance staff. We understand. We have worked with dozens of companies in the same predicament. Let us help you develop a framework for your CMMS justification.
CMMS: Your Reliable Partner
Although CMMS software has been around for more than 50 years, and adoption rates continue to climb, many companies still struggle with creating an efficient, centralized maintenance and operations program. By program, we are talking about an all-encompassing maintenance plan that includes:
- A centralized software package to collect and distribute data
- A set of business rules to create a proactive approach to maintenance
- A team of dedicated people to execute effectively
Having assisted hundreds of organizations both big and small across North America over the past 42 years, we have had the opportunity to be part of some great CMMS implementations and we have also seen where cutting corners being has reduced the results dramatically.
Where to Start
As with any need for change, there are a few defining activities in which you should engage. They are outlined here for you to consider, but we will drill deeper into all of them in subsequent articles.
- Perform an inventory of your current maintenance practices. With that information, you will be prepared to define three key areas of change: Tools, Process and People.
- Evaluate and address important considerations in advance so they don’t derail the project:
- User and management expectations
- Business requirements/considerations
- Technology requirements/considerations
- Develop the implementation approach. The steps to deploy a CMMS can be lengthy and often sophisticated. Developing and confirming reasonable expectations in these three areas will greatly reduce uncertainty.
The success of a CMMS project almost always plays a critical role in the future of the company as a whole. By investing some time and effort into evaluating your real needs and taking the opportunity to reengineer your internal business processes, your chance of success is greatly increased. Stay tuned for next month’s article, when we will delve into the specifics of developing a successful maintenance management program!
Tero Consulting Ltd. provides Maintenance Management software solutions to reduce maintenance and operating expenses through our proven Web Based CMMS, Azzier. Combined with our 40 plus years of CMMS consulting and implementation experience, we can assist with project planning, no matter how big or small. To learn more about our solutions and consulting services go to https://azzier.com/