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Raul Martins

Key Performance Indicators: which ones should I track?

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Hi everyone,

Peter Drucker, an Austrian management consultant, educator and author, who is also known as the founder of modern management, has a quote that says:

“If you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it.”

In short, this is because if you cannot measure something, and know the results, you can’t possibly get better at it.

For this reason, this week we will be discussing about something that plays a pivotal role by showing you and your team if you are on the right track on the road to reliability: Key Performance Indicators

Also known as KPI’s, key performance indicators, as its own name says, are metrics that a team measures the performance of a specific area or process by helping us to make the right decisions to correct or to make improvements.

However, it is important to mention that not choosing the right KPI’s or tracking them incorrectly, might be worse than not tracking any metrics at all. For instance, imagine yourself heading to North with your family and your GPS pointing you at the wrong direction. I can tell that your trip would take a bit longer in the best-case scenario.

Having said that, which KPI’s should you track?

To be honest, this answer varies from industry to industry, as well as how advanced your processes are. See below some metrics that should be a good option if you want to start measuring the performance of your maintenance department:

 

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Now it is your turn! Have you used this KPI’s before? Which KPI’s do you track? Would you add any other KPI's to this list?

 

Finally, I would like to say thanks to @Jim Vantyghem. He is a great enthusiast of this topic, as well as really knowledgeable and has been discussing it with us lately. Thank you very much for sharing your thoughts with our community!

 

Regards,

Raul Martins

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Hi @Raul Martins

there were some discussions on KPIs already in one of the Preventive Maintenance discussions in January and this is indeed a very important topic. KPIs cover broad aspects of maintenance management and they can be categorized as: 

·        economic,

·        technical and

·        organisational.

This is also the approach of the international standard EN 15341 Maintenance - Maintenance Key Performance Indicators, which I refer to very often. It proposes a huge number of KPIs, so it is absolutely necessary to selective and specific for the purpose.

For monitoring the performance of the maintenance process(es) specifically, there is another useful standard, EN 17007 Maintenance process and associated indicators, which is a very thorough and systematic presentation of different (sub)processes in maintenance and associated metrics for each one of them.

The reason one may want to consider using standardized KPIs is that the definitions are very clear which also makes potential benchmarking easier.

For those not fond of standards, I would recommend a book Developing Performance Indicators for Managing Maintenance by Terry Wireman.

Unfortunately, there is no one-size-fits-all approach. Hence, every facility has to look into their own situation and goals they want to achieve in order to define the right set of KPI's. For the practitioners that are about to start using them, my advice would be to start with no more than 10 and to add or change them later on - when the maturity of maintenance processes grows.

Besides selecting the KPIs it is also crucial to set the target values which you want to follow and those need to reflect the strategic business goals of the company wherever possible. So, at the end of the day, maintenance KPIs are not exclusively a matter of Maintenance Department, but should also be aligned with internal customers and top management.

Back to the initial question; my personal perception of the items in the table is that, even though we can consider all of them as metrics, the 2nd and 3rd are more of useful analytical items than KPIs. Yet, they are useful for sure.

If I try to make a suggestion on a few more KPI's to be added to the list above when starting the journey, the following should prove to be useful in most cases:

  • total maintenance costs vs. budget,
  • immediate corrective / deferred corrective / preventive maintenance costs vs. total maintenance costs,
  • Number of immediate corrective / deferred corrective /preventive maintenance Work Orders vs. total maintenance Work Orders,
  • immediate corrective / deferred corrective / preventive maintenance man-hours vs. total maintenance man-hours,
  • Number of maintenance man-hours recorded on WOs vs, total maintenance man-hours.

It should be emphasized again that there need to be a sufficient size and precision of input data to make any KPI meaningful and actionable. And while this discussion is part of the Planning & Scheduling, it should be noted that the WO process in the CMMS/EAM has to allow for the parameters which enable the KPI  calculation and reporting. And all involved in the WO process need to be very disciplined otherwise neither the process nor the KPIs will work.

Quite often, some KPIs cannot simply be calculated by CMMS/EAM and may require interfaces with systems like SCADA, Operations Management System, Business Intelligence or even some manual effort to arrive to them - yes, even in the 21st century :).

Let me conclude with a suggestion that setting and tracking the KPIs should be encouraged even if they are not yet completely accurate. We can at least start observing trends and react on them with due caution.  In its essence, Maintenance Management is a continuous improvement process and KPIs can be a very useful tool. And, as any other tool -  it has to be repaired or changed from time to time... 

 

Best regards,

Andrej

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Hi @Andrej,

That is correct. We started this discussion in January on the "MTBF: How have you been using the Mean Time Between Failures metric?". 

The idea of creating this topic came exactly from that discussion.

On 5/31/2020 at 5:05 AM, Andrej said:

This is also the approach of the international standard EN 15341 Maintenance - Maintenance Key Performance Indicators, which I refer to very often. It proposes a huge number of KPIs, so it is absolutely necessary to selective and specific for the purpose.

For monitoring the performance of the maintenance process(es) specifically, there is another useful standard, EN 17007 Maintenance process and associated indicators, which is a very thorough and systematic presentation of different (sub)processes in maintenance and associated metrics for each one of them.

The reason one may want to consider using standardized KPIs is that the definitions are very clear which also makes potential benchmarking easier.

In regards to these standards, I like them not only due to the fact that it makes benchmarking easier, but also it also helps avoiding KPIs that will mislead the team members when making decisions, as it is less likely that they have been wrongfully input. Unfortunately, it is quite common finding indicators that had their data selected so the results would "look better".

 

On 5/31/2020 at 5:05 AM, Andrej said:

Let me conclude with a suggestion that setting and tracking the KPIs should be encouraged even if they are not yet completely accurate. We can at least start observing trends and react on them with due caution.  In its essence, Maintenance Management is a continuous improvement process and KPIs can be a very useful tool. And, as any other tool -  it has to be repaired or changed from time to time... 

Great suggestion. Totally agree.

 

Regards,

Raul Martins

 

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Hi Andre & Raul,

Good day and thank you for bring light to this topic.

Andre,

I like your list of KPIs as it is a starting point for companies to embrace and record their journey through growth. Raul and I had spent a few months discussing the importance of this topic, especially with regards to the types of KPIs and implementation strategies thereof.

When I started working for the company I am presently with over 2 years ago, there were no KPIs at all because the company was not utilizing anything above 5% to 10% utilization of its CMMS System. Immediately this should raise a lot of red flags for anyone reading this.

We are 2 decades into the millennium and here I am in a company comprised of 12 plants that literally capture no useful data, if any at all. So, with this said, a lot has transpired over the past two years and now I am in a position to assist with this endeavor. So, I needed to share this bit of information to continue on with the next.

If a company has not embraced the importance of maintenance and reliability and has developed a culture focused on throughput and profits from micromanaging costs, you can imagine the mountain to climb and massive limited belief systems in place that must be overcome with replaced with new empowering beliefs. Thus said, as we move forward to climb this mountain, the KPIs we are introducing are as much a set of rudimentary data audit type reporting tools as they are KPIs.

My challenge right now is to

1. Carefully and strategically use common data code sets, fields and methodologies to capture useful, meaningful data for the purpose of cultural change and improved operations.

2. Provide the necessary tools and training to input data.

3.  Have departments and people held accountable towards the collection of this data.

4. Support, mentor, motivate and coach all involved to move this endeavor forward.

In short, the plan is to combine a rational and emotional approach to this journey. I am sure that there are hundreds if not thousands of other companies experiencing the same scenario either in part or whole. Thus the important goal here is to help each other understand the issues at hand and support each other to reach resolves.

I am in the midst of finalizing the introductory KPIs for our company and will share them in a follow up post. It is always a pleasure to read your shared thoughts and experiences and I am always open to any feedback that both of you and the others in this community can offer.

Have a great day!

Jim

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Hi Jim and Raul,

just wanted to add an additional piece of information about the KPIs; the updated GMARI (Global Maintenance and Reliability Indicators) workbook on harmonized indicators has just been released jointly by SMRP and EFNMS. It describes the similarities and differences between SMRP metrics and the EN 14341 which I have mentioned in some of my posts.

It is available for purchase on both organizations' web sites and might be a valuable input for an effort Jim and many others are facing with.

Best regards,

Andrej

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