Levels of Maintenance

Is it important to determine the level of maintenance that is required for our machines? Is the productivity of our organisation impacted by the level of maintenance that we implement? On the surface, both of the above questions may appear to be fairly innocuous but the results can have a long-reaching impact on our organisation.

There are some important factors to take into consideration when planning maintenance and preparing instruction sets for maintenance work activity.  These instructions and the time allocated for the work may vary in detail and depth depending on a number of factors

  • What is the condition of the machine?
  • Is it new/old/difficult to work with?
  • Is the machine running at optimum speed?
  • Is it meeting its targets?
  • Is it being overused or pushed too hard?
  • Is there a need to move it to a more controlled environment?
  • Are we under pressure to just get it running ASAP?
  • Is this a quick fix or a more permanent improvement?

All of the above will determine the scope of work activity needed.

Planning and Scheduling

Over and above the levels of Maintenance just discussed, the ideal objective is to implement a Computerised Maintenance Management System (CMMS) that will create a comprehensive planning and scheduling system, to meet the needs of the plant. Different plants may have different needs, regardless of the fact that they may have similar machines.

This approach involves a number of other factors

  • Invariably the right approach requires a visionary engineer or project manager, who will see beyond the chaos of a reactive environment and will have a passion to drive this CMMS project into being.
  • Part and parcel of this will be to get and set a firm company commitment. It can be very difficult to implement change and new ideas if more senior management is not committed to this change. That will always put unnecessary time pressures on new projects.
  • Mindsets of many personnel will also need to change
    • Senior Management needs to change from seeing Maintenance as a cost, to see it as a vital operation that can ensure the smooth running of the plant and therefore be a direct contributor to bottom-line company profits.
    • Production needs to change from seeing maintenance as a nuisance disrupting production runs, to seeing it as an added value bonus that will assist in optimising the performance of the equipment so that production can produce more volume and better quality.
  • Artisans need to change from the “I am not a clerk’ attitude when completing work order information, to understanding that the quality of their work and information feedback will assist in building a treasure trove of information for the future benefit and growth of the company.

Not only is it important to determine the levels of maintenance for each unique environment but it also becomes vital to have an effective management tool in place to ensure the controlled ongoing future smooth running of the plant and productivity gains. The determination of correct levels of maintenance and the implementation of a CMMS project will trigger the start of an exciting journey towards World Class Maintenance Standards with improved productivity and will enable the organisation to become more competitive in an ever-increasing global market environment.

Contact Joe  Schoeman and the Schorp  Group  Team for more information.
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