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Erik Hupje

What is your single biggest issue when it comes to Maintenance Planning & Scheduling?

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Dear Jefferson & Jim

I would like to add a bit from what Jefferson suggested i.e. to train & explain the reason of data collection from the CMMS. Most of the technician feel that if I put less hours, then my overtime will not be calculated & I should write more to complete my daily work hours.

But the fact is not the same. We collect data to estimate the time required to complete a job or some other reason but not for KEEPING THE TIMESHEET.

We must clear this doubt to the team as well as HR that CMMS is not a TIMESHEET tool. Once people start adding the correct time taken to do the job, you can exactly find the MTTR or other details. 

Worlds best CMMS are just tools which work on the principals of GIGO. We must encourage our teams to not enter Garbage in the system but the correct data so that we can retreive information & not data

Edited by Narender Kumar
Addition to the earlier comment
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Hi Jefferson,

You bring up very good and realistic points. Regarding manpower requirements, I have been asked on several occasions " How many maintenance staff members does a plant require?". From what you have stated directly and indirectly in previous posts, you have a good idea of the answer. Good, usable data to determine average weekly PM inspection labour hours, average time spent on Breakdowns MTTF, MTTR etc., on scheduled / non-scheduled repairs, safety related repairs and projects etc. If we don't collect meaningful, good useful data of required task hours  vs actual available man hours than we are asking for additional help for the sake of asking and this is how it will be heard by the senior management staff!

An unfortunate reality is that in many cases a company's financial values set the standard for the number of maintenance staff members required ( I call this the bean counter factor). This number is always lower than what is required. NOTE: One has to be careful that they may have enough or more than enough resources based on invalid and/or incomplete data/facts.

This said, not to be limited by the thinking of such management values, I  had to think of other ways of accomplishing tasks with limited maintenance staff. Here is an approach that provided me with a fair amount of success.

Equipment operators: Many years back, I was in a position whereby I had limited resources and the plant manager's idea of reducing losses or keeping a profit was to lay off people, reduce spending and of course expect the same amount of work to be completed. Sound familiar! So, with this in mind I decided to solicit the help of the operators as they can be the best resources to help solve problems as most of them are very mechanically inclined. 

So, to make a win/win situation, I had the operators assist with PMs and also minor repairs / adjustments with training and supervision. With this approach, we could now perform a PM inspection and repair at the same time with the least amount of financial impact. 

In turn, this approach helped develop a sense of ownership / stewardship in the operators towards how they viewed and took care of their equipment / process lines (this is massively important). Also, a couple of maintenance technicians were born.

Your view about some departments just implementing for the sake of implementing is an unfortunate reality. This same thing can be said of PM programs as well whereby PMs are generated but the inspection content never questioned, never fully completed and implemented with a high fixed frequency schedule. The program is soon abandoned and the reason is that it just didn't work.

On a good note: I had read quite a few motivational type books and one in particular was Unlimted Power by Tony Robbins .... Here is what I had learned that helped me to keep pushing against the odds as related to Maintenance.

1. Congruency  and consistency. 

2. Mistakes are made by bad judgement, bad judgement created experience, experience creates good judgment and good judgement creates success.

3. If someone has the results you are looking for, find out what they are doing and do exactly the same things to get the same results.

4. People who are passionate and have a goal never see failure, they just keep on working towards the goal.

5. We cannot solve the significant problems we face at the same level of thinking that created the problem in the first place - Albert Einstein.

There is a topic that is not often spoken about when it comes to maintenance and implementation. It is the human side of Maintenance. 

Sorry for the long blah blah blah ... I am passionate when it comes to these types of topics. Thanks for your patience and time.

Thank You,

Jim

 

 

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18 hours ago, Narender Kumar said:

Dear Jefferson & Jim

I would like to add a bit from what Jefferson suggested i.e. to train & explain the reason of data collection from the CMMS. Most of the technician feel that if I put less hours, then my overtime will not be calculated & I should write more to complete my daily work hours.

But the fact is not the same. We collect data to estimate the time required to complete a job or some other reason but not for KEEPING THE TIMESHEET.

We must clear this doubt to the team as well as HR that CMMS is not a TIMESHEET tool. Once people start adding the correct time taken to do the job, you can exactly find the MTTR or other details. 

Worlds best CMMS are just tools which work on the principals of GIGO. We must encourage our teams to not enter Garbage in the system but the correct data so that we can retreive information & not data

Narender,

I agree with you that it is very important for the maintenance staff not be scared to enter their time in CMMS system completely and as accurately as possible.

In the 90's when I first started using a CMMS system it was very important for me to insure that my team entered their time in the software. Having been a technician myself it was easy for me to identify with my team and SELL them on the idea of how this would help them. Like Erik said, we need to be salesmen and this is something that I had stated to Jefferson, we need to understand the "Human side of Maintenance". 

Here are some of the problems that my team had issues with.

1. Why are we always being called to breakdowns just to fix an operator setup error?

2. We don't have time to fix problems the right way,  we always have to apply band-aid fix because production won't give us the time. 

2. Why do we keep fixing the same problems over and over again?

3. Why don't they listen to us, we know what is wrong?

4. We need more people?

5. Our equipment is junk! 

and so on.

I told my team that if they wanted help to solve some of the issues stated above, than they need to help me!

So here is one example of what we had done in order to demonstrate that a lot of maintenance calls were being spent on setting up equipment instead of repairs. In our case the operator's were responsible to setup equipment. Here is what we did to prove a point.

We used the PM program work order generation system to generate monthly Equipment setup type work orders. At the start of each month we would generate a list of blanket work orders for specific pieces of equipment requiring a setup process. The maintenance team members were given a list of these work order numbers and associated asset numbers at the start of each month. 

When a team member had to setup a piece of equipment, the hours spent setting up the equipment were allocated against the appropriate work order. At the end of each month we would close out the work orders and create a new list.

The results! In one year we had spent $28000 dollars worth of maintenance time setting up equipment (remember not a repair but a setup issue). The dollar value came from the software as a billing rate was associated to each maintenance person. Note: In 1995, $28000 would have been more than 50% of a maintenance person's annual earnings!

What does this mean!

1. This is a significant amount of money and this time had taken away from other more important issues that could have been addressed.

2. Imagine all the extra costs in lost time due to incomplete PM inspections, Emergency breakdowns, additional lost product cost for lack of throughput, late deliveries, overtime required to make up for production losses etc.

3. This information helps to identify the need for either more training and/or identifying a person or persons who may not best suited for running the equipment in question.

This was a significant eye opener for the mid and senior management staff.

I have another spin off example based on follow up training with operators but worth a future discussion.

Thank you for your patience with my long winded reply.

Thank you,

Jim

 

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Hi @Jim Vantyghem, great points and articulately put together. And it being long winded enables me to understand the points more actually also, your passion does shine through. I really appreciate that.

5 hours ago, Jim Vantyghem said:

Your view about some departments just implementing for the sake of implementing is an unfortunate reality. This same thing can be said of PM programs as well whereby PMs are generated but the inspection content never questioned, never fully completed and implemented with a high fixed frequency schedule. The program is soon abandoned and the reason is that it just didn't work.

Not that that I didn't try to bring this up, I guess I need to change tactics on how to bring this message across. I can see it happening, but since there have been no disasters happening, then management has decided to turn a deaf ear to the plight of the field techs and operators. Anyhow, I'll need to change tack to help those guys

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On 6/25/2018 at 7:23 PM, Jefferson Voo said:

Issues I have are (I guess there is always more than one!)

1. Maintenance is seen as an expense, as such not the right people are staffed or as what @Evaldus mentioned, people just want the post and pay, but can't execute the job

2. Management have clear way on how to derive a maintenance strategy (and worse, do not listen), resulting in a reactive mode or strategy that is not effective.

3. No formal maintenance management system (especially for an organization with more than one facility), which results in confusion for all involved from Technicians to Planners to Supervisors to Managers.

Just these three are enough to cause chaos and result in a reactive mode of maintenance

You have spoken for a lot of other people as well ... good points!

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What is your single biggest issue when it comes to Maintenance Planning & Scheduling?

Thanks for this question Erik,

My biggest concern is People's mindset, 

Maintenance Planning and scheduling is a phylosophy, it is a culture, it should be a commitment for the whole organisation if we want it being efficient. The maintenance team should be knwoledgeble and used to the maintenance planning process starting form  work identification process (The information you put in a work requests) to the job closure (feedback you get after completing your job). Everybody should know the main goal to achieve: asset reliability. I can ensure you if you seems to be the only one knowing what you are talking about, then you are in trouble.

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Some times it is also happens:  company hires maintenance planner or Maintenance team leader to lead the team in the forest of equipment.  That is great.

But what to do when as Maintenance Planer you see possibility of improvement on equipment. New things are fabricated daily for various equipment. And yeas it costs downtime and money... 

And what can you do when as an MP you bring this to top's as an offer for solution and improvement. You get answers that it is not needed it will be not good we work with this equipment since 1980's.. I spoke my self once as ( S. Jobs from apple ) why then you hire smart or duty patriotic people for this task and not listening for them... Outcome fired...

And we as technicians are like computer geeks hardly understood by people. We have to show explain and prove that is worth.. 

Technicians is culture without language only skills knowledge and experience... Help people to help you  

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On 7/20/2018 at 11:15 PM, Evaldus said:

We have to show explain and prove that is worth

You're absolutely right @Evaldus and once we all recognise that part of our job is to educate those around us including our management, we'll make progress much faster! But it will still be hard work...

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In our site,my biggest concern with planning& scheduling is lack of spare part and th e plant running more on reactive mode, a lot of exception 

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Lusaac, 

I have just started a new job with the same issues and pain you are describing as well!

Romeo & Evaldus ,have also presented issues that quite a few of us experience as well. Erik has a lot of great information to share along with other great information from other members as well. 

I look forward to obtaining and sharing information with all of you.

Jim

 

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The lack of spare parts is often raised as one of the biggest maintenance issues - and I have been there myself. But I do believe that before we tackle the availability of spare parts or our procurement processes we need to have our house in order in the maintenance department. That includes:

  • getting a robust prioritisation process in place for determining our real priorities and enabling us to mitigate risk where we can to create time for ourselves
  • being efficient and effective in completing work
  • removing repeat failures (defects!)
  • and stocking the right parts

With those things in place we often find that spare parts are still important but no longer the big concern they were when we operated in a reactive environment.

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That's true,

On your first point, our plant already start working on that.The second point,we are still fighting on that due to operation.they did not give the e equailment even we give them a timeline for repair.

Removing defect,on that regards,action item execution is our big issue.

The last point, a procurement issue as well is noticed. They buy the chippest spare.

We are a mining company with 7 years of production now.

Based on your experience, in which point should we start to improve our plant reliability.

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@Lusaac you should start improving reliability as early as during the design of your plant. Now that you're operational there really is no reason to wait, start today with improving reliability. The real question is though where to start and what to focus on. Did you have a look at the Road to Reliability ebook that you can download from the site?

If your plant is very reactive you need to analyse why and develop a plan to break that reactive cycle. Often that is a combination of a good planning & scheduling process (drives prioritisation and efficiency) and tackling your bad actors.

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That is true, and my question is where to start as we are at reliability team?

 

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