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THIS IS A DRAFT FOR AN ARTICLE WRITTEN BY ENRIQUE MORA WHICH WILL BE PUBLISHED IN THE MAINTENANCE TECHNOLOGY MAGAZINE IN 2012 NO COPIES OR PRINTS OF THIS ARTICLE ARE AUTHORIZED UNTIL AFTER ITS PUBLICATION OF THE MAGAZINE AND WITH THE AUTHORIZATION OF THE ATP-GROUP.

Best Practices – How can they work for you?  

I frequently recall the story of Vince Lombardi’s approach when the Packers had a bad game: He would start talking softly to the team with… “This is a football,” reminding them of the need to go back to the basics. 

There is a lot of interest in most maintenance groups to adopt TPM, TPR, RCM, and all the imaginable disciplines that represent “World-Class” status. The problem being that these groups are not always ready to embark into those disciplines simply because the basics are not covered first.  

The basics in our profession are called “Best Maintenance Practices,” remember? 

BMP – Best Maintenance Practices are the right start for any activity that relates to improvements of Reliability, Maintainability, and Productivity. 

Each time we are not completely satisfied with the results of our effort, we need to “go back to the basics.”  

THIS IS A DRAFT FOR AN ARTICLE WRITTEN BY ENRIQUE MORA WHICH WILL BE PUBLISHED IN THE MAINTENANCE TECHNOLOGY MAGAZINE IN 2012 NO COPIES OR PRINTS OF THIS ARTICLE ARE AUTHORIZED UNTIL AFTER ITS PUBLICATION OF THE MAGAZINE AND WITH THE AUTHORIZATION OF THE ATP-GROUP

Going Back to the Basics:
Implement BMP – Best Maintenance Practices, and create a Habit! 

The 5S Philosophy is, of course, the Foundation for any set of Best Practices. The poor implementation of 5S undermines all the strength of any BMP that we have implemented already, if 5S is not deeply woven in the Company culture. Without a complete company-wide adoption of the 5S, very little BMP can be built and sustained. The demand, in the 4th S, (the need to Standardize the workplace), is the key for BMP success. 5S is not just about cleaning and keeping order. It is the foundation to implement and sustain BMP. 

Best Maintenance Practices Basics

*      For any successful Lean Implementation, assuring the 5S foundation is indispensable.  

*      To complete the Foundation, the layer of Pre-requisites defined below is a very critical part too.  

*      Now, the rest of the structure will be easier to gradually get set in place.  

Education: This was a substantial element in the past, when apprentice programs fueled The Industrial Revolution. Today, forward-looking companies recognize the value of in-house training and internships. For example, some large firms have teamed with their local technical schools, some of them even dedicating a training area on company grounds for their current and new workers. All existing personnel from all different areas must receive the opportunity when there is that kind of resource. Smaller firms still have the alternative of having their own leaders take the responsibility of training their people continuously, even if for short periods of time.  

THIS IS A DRAFT FOR AN ARTICLE WRITTEN BY ENRIQUE MORA WHICH WILL BE PUBLISHED IN THE MAINTENANCE TECHNOLOGY MAGAZINE IN 2012 NO COPIES OR PRINTS OF THIS ARTICLE ARE AUTHORIZED UNTIL AFTER ITS PUBLICATION OF THE MAGAZINE AND WITH THE AUTHORIZATION OF THE ATP-GROUP

Training: The complement to Education gives everyone the opportunity to show their capabilities to put into practice what they have learned each day. This cumulative skills eventually transition into the empowerment that makes teams strong and effective. Daily training needs to be reinstalled in the activities of every workgroup. Leaders should spend at least 10 to 15 minutes/day exchanging ideas and updating skills with their team. It is the “customer service” that leaders must provide to their customers/team. It is a reciprocal benefit, since better trained technicians will do a better and more efficient job. 

Management Support: Most frustrations suffered by the enthusiasts of improvement come from the lack of hands-on support from top leadership positions. Our leaders need to discover the power and effectiveness of rubbing shoulders with the people in the lines of work. The learning experience will go in both ways. It is one of the best investments a Leader can make! 

“Culturization:” This happens when the participants of a group assimilate the common concepts and principles. This way the members of the group are motivated and brought to a cooperative attitude that will strengthen the actions, turning each group of people into a Team. This is eased by sharing the pride of positive results of a proposal and helping them discover the personal benefits they all will be able to derive from it. 

After these two layers of foundation, the rest of the construction blocks are possible to establish a Strong Infra-structure of Best Maintenance Practices.
THIS IS A DRAFT FOR AN ARTICLE WRITTEN BY ENRIQUE MORA WHICH WILL BE PUBLISHED IN THE MAINTENANCE TECHNOLOGY MAGAZINE IN 2012 NO COPIES OR PRINTS OF THIS ARTICLE ARE AUTHORIZED UNTIL AFTER ITS PUBLICATION OF THE MAGAZINE AND WITH THE AUTHORIZATION OF THE ATP-GROUP

Now let us analyze These Basics… 

1.    Work Order System Implementation. In large organizations it combines with the use of the CMMS – Computerized Maintenance Management System. 

It is indispensable to establish a thorough WOS – Work Order System. The WOS have existed from before the computers and helped maintainers measure their effectiveness in several ways:  

*      This is the only way to measure the downtimes with precision. Downtimes reduction is the most important KPI – Key Performance Indicator for any maintenance team. 

*      Technician performance. 

*      Parts consumption and inventory control. 

*      Equipment behavior and trends. 

2.   Full CMMS Implementation and Training

 

Now we have the CMMS which automates the many tasks of Maintenance Control that were so cumbersome in the past.  

*      Every individual on the maintenance team must be trained to make good use of the CMMS System. 

*      It should be well linked to Real-Time Labor utilization and Inventory of parts, timely generating the procurement requests. 

*      The most critical part to keeping the CMMS at optimal performance is to avoid errors while feeding information. 

o   These errors are mostly caused by poor training and/or communication. 

*      All individuals performing Maintenance tasks should be thoroughly trained on the CMMS. They will then be able to feed it timely. 

3.   Investigation and Determination of the Root Cause to Prevent Reoccurrence of Problems.

 

Root Cause Analysis is not always given the deserved credit or importance. 

*      Charles Latino, one of the most passionate Root Cause Analysts, established through his long experience that most of the maintenance effort and budget mistakenly focuses on going back to solving a repetitive or chronic problem. 

*      Charles also asserted that most of that useless cost could be avoided just by implementing a RCA – Root Cause Analysis discipline. 

*      We are so busy fixing failing things that rarely can we devote the time and thoughts required to defeat the culprits of those failures. 

*      Even if we do it, there is still a possible missed step: Taking actions that will prevent reoccurrence!

4.   Training and Cross training – Technicians’ Professional Development

and Autonomous Maintenance implementation are tasks that demand improvement of skills in order to be effective.

 

Training and Cross Training: Most maintenance leaders are currently not using even a minimal part of their time to educate and train their crews. This is happening because most of those leaders are not trained on this critical task. Therefore the vicious cycle spins again and again. 

The Training of Technicians must focus on three important responsibilities: 

1.      Technical issues: Basic and advanced – Includes the correct application of methods and the use of the right tools, instruments, systems, manuals, and information. 

2.      Communication and Customer Service so they have a better relationship with their customers. 

3.      The 5S concept applied to always finishing work in a professional manner. Leave the area and equipment clean and in “like new” or even better shape. 

Cross Training is also undermined when the trainees are receiving the information and examples from unqualified technicians, (a copy of a bad copy). This way the trainee inherits the bad practices and habits, so the level of professionalism constantly worsens.  

In order to implement Autonomous Maintenance, which represents the medullar improvement of any advanced maintenance strategy such as TPM or TPR, it is critical to develop a good training skill level in all the technicians. This way they can help operators understand the principle of operation of their machines. While operators become more skilled and knowledgeable, their operation will be improved, and so will their personal performance and that of their equipment. They also will be more helpful at detecting and reporting any abnormality as soon as it arises, which reduces the eventual cost and time of repairs. Eventually they will be equipped to perform minor maintenance on their own and help the maintenance crew in more sophisticated issues. 

5.    Thorough – Optimized Preventive Maintenance Process  

After the previous 4 BMPs above, now we are ready to free up some maintenance technicians’ time to perform more PM – Preventive Maintenance which in most facilities has been neglected. PM needs to be done intelligently, assuring some continuous improvement by the advice and observation of the Technicians and also the Operators in some cases. PM must be a live exchange of knowledge and execution, so we keep the concept of a Continuous Improvement Activity. 

 THIS IS A DRAFT FOR AN ARTICLE WRITTEN BY ENRIQUE MORA WHICH WILL BE PUBLISHED IN THE MAINTENANCE TECHNOLOGY MAGAZINE IN 2012 NO COPIES OR PRINTS OF THIS ARTICLE ARE AUTHORIZED UNTIL AFTER ITS PUBLICATION OF THE MAGAZINE AND WITH THE AUTHORIZATION OF THE ATP-GROUP

If Only we couldadopt these Five Best Maintenance Practices, the professional level of everyone would grow and the organization would benefit from it each and every single day! This eases all following steps we require to progress in the advanced Lean and World Class Maintenance Implementations. 

There is such a flood of information these days on every subject that it is easy to get overexcited and feel compelled to accelerate full throttle and go for the next new thing. As if the “New Thing” was the silver bullet we need to eliminate any past and current failures, and turn on the bright light of success.  

It is human nature to feel that the “New Things” are very promising, especially when they are actually working miracles for some early implementers. 

If we want to succeed at anything, there is only one way: do things right the first time, and if possible, better all the time. Not only better than you did before, but now this has a deeper meaning: better than anyone else!  

                 

Nobody said Maintenance was an easy job;
it is one of the most
Challenging and Fulfilling Professions!
Feel Proud to be in it, and Enjoy it! 

 THIS IS A DRAFT FOR AN ARTICLE WRITTEN BY ENRIQUE MORA WHICH WILL BE PUBLISHED IN THE MAINTENANCE TECHNOLOGY MAGAZINE IN 2012 NO COPIES OR PRINTS OF THIS ARTICLE ARE AUTHORIZED UNTIL AFTER ITS PUBLICATION OF THE MAGAZINE AND WITH THE AUTHORIZATION OF THE ATP-GROUP