Reliability and Maintenance Management Beliefs

"IDCON - A Reliability and Maintenance Management Consulting Firm"  

Excellent leadership is an essential success factor for lasting results for any improvement initiative an organization undertakes, including improvements of Reliability and Maintenance performance. As a leader you need to create an organization of disciples that will follow you to make your vision, or future organization, a reality.

shutterstock_443688484

As a leader I have found it very important to develop and communicate your beliefs to your organization. These beliefs will then be guiding your organization on their journey to your goals.

In this column I will share two beliefs of my own and that I hope can serve as a guideline to develop your own beliefs.  

christer_idhammar

Christer Idhammar
Founder and CEO of IDCON INC. 
Raleigh NC, USA

info(at)idcon.com

Lost Production Reports

In most organizations the operations department is viewed as an internal customer to the maintenance department, and the maintenance department view themselves as a service organization to the operations department. This working relationship is often reflected in the lost production reports. Lost production is reported by department e.g. Operations, Mechanical, Electrical and Instrumentation etc. This serves no purpose more than to find someone to blame. It is also very often wrong because it frequently reports the symptom instead of the cause of the problem.  E.g. an electric motor failed and caused lost production. This is often reported as down time due to an electrical problem, but the cause to the motor failure can be something different. If you want to create a partnership between operations and maintenance the common goal between these two departments is reliable production. 

1

Solve and Eliminate Problems

This belief shall be documented and reinforced in a mission statement. An example of a production, or manufacturing mission statement could be. “In a partnership between operations and maintenance we shall safely deliver continuously better production reliability”.  Then all work processes, including lost production reports, must be designed according to the mission statement.

Instead of reporting lost production by department it should be reported where, when and what happened. A trigger is set to filter what events shall go through a Root Cause Problem Elimination (RCPE) activity. In a RCPE process the first step is to clearly describe the problem in a problem statement, and then ask “why” or “how” can the problem occur? This process will help build a partnership. Also notice we talk about problems, not failures. The term failure will lead thoughts to equipment and maintenance, while the perm problem is more inclusive of everybody.

2

Keep Things Simple

Sustainable improvements in reliability and maintenance performance is “90 percent” about getting skilled people to work in a disciplined system. The technology part is important and easy to get people interested in. E.g. buying a new handheld data collector for equipment condition monitoring can be interesting, but to use it in a disciplined system, report failures, plan correction of found failures, schedule execution of correction of failures, report what was done, and to use this information to avoid repetition of the failures, that is more of a challenge. 

Technology is the only thing that has changed significantly in the last 50 years. The principles on how to manage maintenance are pretty much the same. New names on well-known concepts occur frequently and this can be very confusing to people. 

Perhaps it started many years ago when a new manager implemented “Planned Maintenance”, this lead to short, but not sustained improvements. The next initiative, often with a new manager, was “Predictive Maintenance”. Again short-term results were generated. When results disappeared the next action was to implement TPM (Total Productive Maintenance). When also this initiative failed to give the significant sustained results that had been expected it was time to enter into AM (Asset Management) and then RCM (Reliability Centred Maintenance), RBM (Reliability Based Maintenance), 5S, Six Sigma, Total Production Reliability (TPR), Lean etc. Nothing wrong with all these initiatives but it is of vital importance to stick with one holistic system and clarify the difference between the system and the tools used to enhance the system performance. Almost all initiatives were initiated by changes in management. Best performing organizations have documented and implemented best practices for reliability and maintenance and over time consistently executed these practices better and better. While seeing results every year, after two to seven years they have been rewarded with break-through results.

Because of the confusion all these concepts and tools it is important to simplify as much as possible. Successful organizations have done that and focused on continuously improving the basic processes: Prevention, Inspections, Planning, Scheduling and Execution of work.  

3
Asset Management | 22.11.2016

Latest articles

The Ultimate Guide to ITSM Best Practices

ITSM or IT service management is a collective term used to describe the processes followed by organizations to design, plan, improve and deliver IT services they offer. It has become a standard procedure for organizations around the world to come up with a business-specific ITSM framework that aligns IT services and processes with organizational goals.

Cmms | 15.11.2018

Leak detection in the age of digitalization with SONOCHEK

Together with the update of the SONOCHEK apps SONOLEVEL and SONOLEAK, PRUFTECHNIK launches the SONOLEVEL DATAVIEWER, a new visualization PC-software for leak analysis. SONOCHEK is an innovative digital leak inspection device used to localize leaks in compressed air, gas and vacuum systems. The device includes automatic leak classification and its broad bandwidth of 20 to 100 kHz allows detecting leaks even at an early stage. SONOCHEK is also used effectively for electrical inspection and monitoring of bearing lubrication.

Asset Management | 24.10.2018

Cost-Effective, High Performance Flare Monitoring in the Petrochemical Industry

Safe flare operation and environmental protection require reliable and accurate flare pilot monitoring.

Partner Articles | 24.10.2018

Standards Increase Economic Growth and Help Companies Access Foreign Markets

Standardisation is a key to a well-functioning, economically prospering and sustainable society. It is also a way to increase economic growth. These conclusions can be made from the results of the new study “The Influence of Standards on the Nordic Economies”.

R&D | 24.10.2018

Future of Work: Gig Economy and Field Maintenance

In today's dynamic and inter-dependent world, traditional jobs are losing ground due to the rise of the gig economy. Modern blue and white collar workers now have the opportunity to choose to whom they will give their time, where will they work and under which conditions. 

HSE | 24.10.2018

How ultrasonic sensors and artificial intelligence improve condition monitoring

In an industrial setting, assets are everything. A breakdown can cause hours  of downtime, and thus hours of lost productivity and lower financial gains. Preventative maintenance is one way facility managers counteract system entropy, but it is not perfect strategy. In some cases, a preventive approach to maintenance can actually lower the overall effectiveness of an asset. In the case of a valve for example, constant tightening can cause premature wear and tear.

Applications | 23.10.2018

Maintenance: A Necessary and Important Function in the Future

Euromaintenance 2016 will take place in Athens at the end of May. It is the ideal moment to reflect on maintenance in a European context. Euromaintenance is known as the summit for all involved in maintenance across Europe, it’s the place to be. The conference, with the support of the EFNMS, is the only commercially independent conference covering the topics we deal with in the maintenance world.

EFNMS | 20.5.2016