Failures in facilities and equipment are inevitable, but can be reduced or minimized with a maintenance plan well adapted to the needs of the facilities and work teams.
One of the main reasons why it is so convenient to avoid breakdowns is because of the high cost they represent for the company.
An even more important factor is that breakdowns can have a critical human cost, as they can lead to very serious accidents. Obviously, we also have the economic cost. In this sense, breakdowns are expensive because:
- They can shorten the useful life of the installations or machines: It depends on the damage caused by the breakdown, the useful life of the installation or machine can be seriously affected.
- They involve repair costs: Repairing a breakdown is an extraordinary cost for the company because it involves an expense in materials, personnel, outsourced services, etc. In addition, emergency repairs in the event of a breakdown are much more expensive than the maintenance actions that could have prevented them.
- They cause losses in production: The costs should not be considered only considering the expenses that the company has to repair the fault, but also the money that the company has stopped earning due to the production stop.
Therefore, having a preventive strategy instead of reactive to avoid as much as possible the breakdowns in the facilities and machines will be of vital importance.
What is a maintenance plan?
A maintenance plan consists of a set of actions and preventive tasks that are carried out in a facility or work teams.
The purpose of the maintenance plan is to guarantee compliance with the objectives that have been set in terms of availability, reliability and cost of said facilities and equipment. In this way, the maintenance plan maximizes the useful life of the facility and assets.
7 Steps to develop the maintenance plan
Step 1: Define objectives
No action in the company, and in life in general, makes sense if we do not know where we are going and what we want to achieve. The development of the facility maintenance plan was not going to be any different.
Obviously, the main objectives will be:
- Minimize the number of stops in production and their duration.
- Reduce maintenance costs
But this vague definition will not be helpful. We need it to be measurable to be able to analyze annually if the maintenance plan is giving the expected results.
Therefore, it will be much more appropriate to set the objectives in a concrete way. For example: Reduce downtime by 25%; Increase equipment availability by 70%; etc.
When carrying out or analyzing the maintenance plan annually, we must consider what went wrong in the previous maintenance plan (if it existed) so that the objectives that were established in it are not met. It is therefore not a matter of simply deciding what we want to achieve, but also of being able to analyze and determine:
- How the team of operators can implement the new plan to achieve the objectives.
- What systems, teams, managers and responses have been used
- On what dates were the last maintenance performed
Step 2. Establish a budget
Determine the budget necessary to carry out preventive maintenance of the facilities and work equipment. To do this, you must consider the manufacturers’ indications, the dates and periodicity of review, etc.
Step 3. Make an inventory of assets to include
This is one of the points that requires more dedication since it requires taking an inventory of all existing assets (facilities and work equipment). It is convenient that the assets divided by equipment families are mapped in the inventory.
In addition, it is also highly recommended to carry out this third step directly in your CMMS to be able to record the tasks that must be carried out in each maintenance.
Step 4. Consult the manufacturers manuals
The asset manuals will provide us with the necessary information to carry out predictive maintenance. We will have to enter this information in our own CMMS. This is information such as the revision deadline, the expected useful life, types of lubricants to use, and safety measures to follow.
Step 5. Manage staff and their roles
At this point we are already clear about the objectives we want to achieve, the budget, part of the actions and tasks that must be carried out (those indicated by the manufacturers) as well as the equipment and facilities on which they must be done. The next step is to define who is going to do it.
To do this, groups and specialties can be determined in which the technicians will be classified.
In the CMMS you can create a record of all operators involved in maintenance, including their group, specialties and responsibilities.
The same technician can have different specialties and groups. In that case, you will be able to perform different types of interventions.
In addition, in the same register of technicians, we should have the costs per hour (normal hour and overtime), travel cost, etc. In this way we can have the cost of each intervention.
To calculate it, we must import the working hours of each operator in the work reports, allocating the cost of labor according to the hours worked and the rate of the operator in question.
Step 6: Determine the type of maintenance and its planning
Determining which interventions need to be performed can be done in two different ways:
- Based on fixed time periods: certain time periods and the set of interventions to be carried out are determined when these periods are reached.
- Based on metrics and indicators: In this case, maintenance interventions are carried out when pre-established metrics are met. An example of a metric for a machine could be “hours of operation.” In this case, a system should be in place that allows the hours of operation to be counted. This system would notify the maintenance service automatically when the device meets them.
In addition to determining the type of maintenance, we must plan it.
To do this, we must consider:
- How often the jobs should be done
- If the stop of the machines is required
- If possible include periodic inspections to check that the machines are working correctly.
- How and when will the analysis of the resources used in the maintenance practice be carried out, as well as the duration of the work carried out.
Step 7. Define the maintenance plan analysis: definition of KPI’s
There is no point going forward if we don’t know where we want to go. But it does not make sense to continue moving forward if we do not know if we are on the right path.
Therefore, the first step in creating the maintenance plan was to define where we are going. And for the same reason, the last step is to be able to analyze and confirm if we are going where we intended, as well as detect drifts and their reasons.
Here we will need Business Intelligence (BI) tools as well as define the key performance indicators (Key Performance Indicators or KPIs).
We must determine which are the indicators that best inform us about the effectiveness of the maintenance plan and the maintenance actions carried out. This will imply not only defining what data we are going to use to measure said KPIs, but also how we are going to collect that data.
Regarding the type of KPI’s that we must incorporate in the facility maintenance plan, we will find three well-differentiated groups:
1. Asset-related indicators
We refer to the indicators related to the installation or machine on which the maintenance tasks will be carried out. The objective of these indicators is to visualize the status, performance or treatment that is given to each asset.
- Mid time before failure (MTBF): Indicates the frequency of failure on an asset (reliability rate). It is calculated as: No. of total hours of the analyzed period / No. breakdown
- Mid time to repair (MTTR): Indicates the average time required to correct a fault on an asset (maintainability rate). It is calculated as: No. of downtime hours due to breakdown / No. breakdown
2. Indicators related to the management of work orders
A priori it may seem that work orders are impossible to manage. They happen, they arrive, they respond to each other and they close. It therefore seems that there is no planning or management possible and we have to solve them as best we can.
However, with this type of KPI’s we can see that although there may be variations and deviations, there is also a part that follow a certain pattern or predictability.
With this type of KPI’s we seek to have the analysis and conclusions of the values obtained for these indicators, in order to carry out a more effective planning and execution of the work.
The key idea here is that if we know the average values that are repeating, we can plan for them, and thus also respond better to deviations.
Some examples of KPI’s related to the management of work orders are:
- Work orders made in the last month
- Work orders made during the last quarter
- Average time to complete a work order
- Work orders pending expiration of the last week
- Number of emergency or highest priority work orders: This KPI is important because if its value is low or null, I mean that the plant, installation or machine is reliable. Otherwise, the state of said asset is bad.
3. Indicators related to industrial maintenance personnel:
Our maintenance plan considers all the resources necessary to carry out the maintenance tasks of the facilities and machinery. For this reason, the human team is obviously included.
We therefore need the KPIs of the maintenance plan to also include KPIs related to personnel. In this way we can also control this resource and ensure that we are managing it correctly.
With this type of KPI’s we seek to know the status and availability of our technicians. There are two types of personnel indicators for this:
- Performance indicators: These are all those indicators related to the performance of each technician or operator, such as the average number of work orders closed per technician per day.
- Availability indicators: Those indicators related to the availability of the operators. For example, technicians without assigned work orders, technicians with overload, etc.
In the LINK article you can find a list of the main indicators in the maintenance sector that can serve as a reference and guide for the KPIs of your maintenance plan.
Remember that the maintenance plan is a living document . This means that if after the analysis of the KPIs it is detected that some actions are not giving the expected results, or that it would be convenient to add new ones, more resources, etc., the maintenance plan must be updated accordingly and its new indications must be followed from that moment on.
Prepare your maintenance plan with TicTAP
Some companies carry out the maintenance plan manually. However, it is much more convenient to use Maintenance Management Software (CMMS). You can use TicTAP for this, either as a complete CMMS or by integrating it into your current software to expand its functionalities.
With TicTAP you can create custom maintenance forms and include in them the KPIs that operators must collect. In this way, you will be able to create reports and analyze them on the TicTAP web platform.
This way you will be able to minimize the time in data collection and have much more time to be able to analyze the information. You won’t have to waste time digitizing, sorting and classifying this information.
Thanks to the analysis that you will be able to carry out of the KPIs with TicTAP, you will be able to detect what is not working as you expected and study the best solutions to avoid these deviations.