Thursday, March 25, 2010

Importance of Maintenance Fundamentals

One of the most important and most often overlooked areas of maintenance and reliability improvement lies in the fundamentals. Many of the facilities that I visit are caught in a game of chase, following what ever new philosophy or acronym has become vogue ( I like to call it “chasing the shiny stuff.”). Fighting the urge and putting the “shiny stuff” on the back burner is the basis of good maintenance. You must first take a look at basic maintenance practices and see where you stack up.  Does your facility have a good partnership between maintenance and operations? Do you practice precision maintenance techniques? Are you capturing and using your maintenance history? Are your Preventive Maintenance tasks failure mode based and are they in use by your crafts? Do you truly plan your work? These and many other basic questions need to be addressed in order to build the foundation that will support true manufacturing excellence. Once these elements are shored up and strong, then the advanced tools and shiny processes will work more effectively to provide the most fundamental reason for manufacturing: Profits.

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