Category Archives: Energy Efficiency – Advice

Overcome Resistance to Change in the Maintenance Business – part 2

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This is part 2.  So if you need to catch up, here is part 1.

Disruptive Change in Maintenance at Jeffboat

When implementing a maintenance management strategy, a critical component to most certainly deal with every time is the inevitable resistance to change.  Whether it is the introduction of new software or a complete overhaul of the maintenance function, the process of change usually represents the involvement of disruptive technology.  A “thought-path” of least resistance might tell us that most changes are really just improvements on something old and, thus, the old paradigms can be used as a starting point.  However, there are often changes that organizations need to make (whether they do or not is another story) that serve to disrupt the dominant paradigm, rather than sustaining it.  These types of shifts usually involve disruptive technologies and make the old things less important or obsolete.  The problem with these disruptive changes is that people will still attempt to apply the old paradigms to the new realities.  This is a mistake, which leads to resistance. When this mistake is being made, the person feeling feeling and thus spreading the resistance are, in a sense, trying to understand the car as nothing more than a carriage without horses.

History of Jeffboat

Jeffboat is a manufacturing company with a very long history.  Originally named the Howard Steamboat Company, Jeffboat is America’s largest inland ship builder and has been manufacturing ships for over 100 years.  This iconic shipbuilding business manufactured such famous ships as the Mississippi Queen, the General Jackson showboat and the Casino Aztar riverboat casino.

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Like many old line manufacturers, Jeffboat has undergone a number of corporate/ownership changes.  Most recently, in 2010 the company was bought by Platinum Equity, which is a global acquisition firm.

As you can imagine, the Jeffboat yard is a large open space sprawling over one mile long, and loaded with manufacturing equipment and materials.  Typical for many old-line manufacturing firms, on the Jeffboat property, you can find manufacturing lines, made up of equipment and operated or maintained by employees who have been there for several decades.

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Because of the size of the shipyard and age of the equipment, without much change over the years, Jeffboat’s maintenance process had been a reactive culture since as far back as anyone could remember.  There was no CMMS software in place and equipment was tracked using spreadsheets.  Because of this technology gap, it was often hit or miss as to whether the right parts were in the stores room.  So here was the first pocket of improvement opportunity.  With hundreds of repair jobs happening, and most of them starting with a maintenance technician struggling to find the correct parts for the targeted equipment, this was an obvious sink hole where labor time, and production time, drained over and over. There was also no Scheduler/Planner, and thus maintenance procedures, or instructions, were handled informally and based on need at that particular moment.

Disruptive Change

Because of a number of issues within Jeffboat that related to maintenance over the past few years, a decision was made by senior management to transform Jeffboat from a reactive-based maintenance department to a more preventive culture.  The following changes were planned:

  • Formalize all maintenance procedures through work orders
  • Institute a computerized CMMS program to issue and track work orders and measure inventory levels
  • Work together with Production in a new way as a partner instead of an annoyance
  • Move one of the technicians into the role of Maintenance Scheduler/Planner
  • Institute procedures and technology for materials management to allow for continuous tracking of equipment and manage parts in an efficient, time-sensitive manner
  • Clearly define the roles and responsibilities for all maintenance and production personnel with regards to equipment

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All of these meant that disruptive change would have to take place both in the way people worked together but in many people’s jobs and in how things would be done.  However, recognizing the resistance that would occur, and having a plan to address that resistance was critical at this stage.  In other words, without shifting the mindset of the individuals affected and proactively creating ownership of the changes, all the improvements in technology and procedural changes would not be successful.  How do we address this resistance?  Can we proactively bring a wave of positive change through managing the mindset of a group to new, improved ideas and methods?

How to change mindset – moving from the horseless carriage to the car

 

modelofsustainableimprovement

Model for Sustainable Improvement

Common sense tells us that the first step for solving any problem is to analyze or assess.  This is no different for the model of sustainable improvement (above) needed to help achieve successful changes to improve Jeffboat maintenance.

Jeffboat brought in experts in maintenance process and maintenance change management, TRO Maintenance Solutions (TRO).  As the model (above) indicates, the foundation is analysis.  Richard Beer, representing TRO, conducted an assessment of the current overall maintenance process at Jeffboat.  This maintenance assessment served as the baseline analysis that would support any future initiative.  During the analysis stage, Richard Beer, having years of experience in maintenance best practices, identified and documented the main obstacles (already stated above) that were hurting the Jeffboat maintenance process.  TRO also recognized that, in order to be successful, the second part of this model was essential – the people most affected by the changes had to shift their thinking.  They needed to move from the ‘horseless carriage’ to the ‘car’, and take ownership of the changes.  It was from this analysis that Richard Beer created the strategy to implement change within the Jeffboat culture.  To help build that strategy, he brought in Mike Rosenberg, the developer of Flexible Thinker®.

Strategy

  1. Give stakeholders the tools for change and have them develop ideas for implementing change through a 1 day workshop;
  2. Review the ideas with management and then take the team’s ideas and management input and work with all of the stakeholders to turn the ideas into key performance indicators (KPIs) for review by management;
  3. Take the KPIs and work with the stakeholders to turn them into internal service level agreements (SLAs) that clearly define the roles and deliverables that each person or group is responsible for in order to implement the ideas.
  4. Take the SLAs and create a series of standard operating procedures (SOPs) which would form the basis of the new maintenance handbook and create the infrastructure needed to implement the procedure and technology changes.

Flexible Thinker®

In order to accomplish the goal of paradigm shift, TRO used the Flexible Thinker® learning program to help institute the change. The purpose of this approach was to achieve the following:

  • Create a paradigm shift about how people view both the issues they are facing and their jobs
  • Use language to create a culture where ideas flow and people are held accountable for helping to create solutions instead of act as an obstacle to them
  • Push people out of their comfort zone and expand their thinking
  • Create the ‘ahas’ that are necessary for sustainable change
  • Turn ideas into action by creating ‘quick hits’ or successes for people to buy-in to the changes and incorporate the learning into their daily work lives

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Key Measurement Opportunities – Is this project showing signs of success?

The ultimate goal of both the Flexible Thinker® program and the sustainable change model is to create the ownership and paradigm shift that is necessary to uphold implementation of new initiatives.  This was measured by the following milestones:

  • Once the SLAs were completed, was their going to be resistance to signing the agreements and/or execution of the agreements?
  • Would people perform well in their new positions or change the way they were working in their current positions to help execute the SLAs and achieve the KPIs?
  • The KPIs were the ultimate goal of the entire program.  Was the maintenance department moving toward hitting the KPIs?

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Implementing the learning strategy

An important element of creating sustainable change is to allow stakeholders to both learn and apply new knowledge and practices into the workplace.  Using a blended learning approach that utilized both formal (classroom) and informal (coaching and mentoring) learning modalities.  The role of the consultants was both to facilitate creation of the infrastructure that would allow for change, including creation of documentation and providing onsite support for coaching and mentoring as well as helping implement the changes.  Instead of executing the changes themselves, TRO acted more as a facilitator and allowed the stakeholders opportunities to implement the changes themselves.  By providing the coaching and follow up necessary, the structural changes needed to be made were implemented by the people who would have to “live” with them.

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Flexible Thinker® tools in the workplace

During the course of the consulting, the consultants asked stakeholders if they had applied the Flexible Thinker® tools in their work environment.  One stakeholder indicated that he was using the ‘clap focus’ game as a way to get his team engaged at the beginning of the shift and then was utilizing it to get them to ‘move faster’ during the day.  Another stakeholder indicated that he had taught his kids to ‘orange’ it and was using it with his guys when they came to him with a problem to engage them to help create solutions.  It was through this anecdotal evidence that we were able to see that the training was having the desired effect.

Lessons learned

In implementing the model, there were a number of lessons learned.

The Innovative Change/Ownership stage is critical to support implementation of any change

Most organizations try to skip this part of the model and move directly from analysis to implementation.  Usually this is done either totally by external consultants or through directives of senior management.  The problem with this approach is that the people actually responsible for implementation often times either do not understand the reason for the change, buy-in to the change or feel that the change is a direct threat to them and their job.  What happens in these conditions is that the implementation is either undermined or people simply wait until the next ‘flavor of the month’ is over so they can return to doing things the way they used to do them.  This means that the changes that are necessary to become more productive are undermined at the lower levels of the organization and the implementation eventually fails.

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Senior management must buy-in on the changes and the model

Senior management must buy into both the changes that are taking place and the process of allowing the stakeholders to drive the process of change.  Jeffboat provided excellent senior management support and leadership.  Because of that leadership, the stakeholders felt that they owned the changes and supported the execution of the ideas.  At every step, senior management was part of the process and reviewed the ideas created.  If they did not approve of them, a reason was given and brought back to the stakeholders with the necessary justification about why the idea could not be implemented.  This allowed for continuous communication between front-line staff and senior management and a sense of collaboration.  If senior management had undermined the process by imposing their ideas arbitrarily without explanation over the ideas generated by the stakeholders, the entire process would have been subverted because lower-level staff would feel that it was all a waste of their time and morale and productivity would have suffered significantly.

In addition, it is important for senior management to understand that there is always lower productivity in change.  This is best demonstrated by the Satir model for change:

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With any change, there is resistance and then chaos which creates lower productivity.  It only as people start to work through the changes that performance rises above the status quo before plateauing.  All change takes time and there is now shortcut.  It is essential that during that time of lower productivity, senior management does not undermine the process to go back to the old status quo.  They must provide stakeholders with support to work through the changes, learn them and incorporate them into their daily routine in order to achieve a higher level of performance in the long-term.  It needs to be understood by senior management that people will want to revert to ‘what they know’ as growth is created by confusion.  There will be times when people revert to old habits and they need to be coached and rewarded for implementing new changes that lead to long-term gain for the organization.

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Coaching is essential

As discussed earlier, with change come resistance and chaos which can easily lead to frustration.  The fact is the very essence of change is to take people out of their comfort zones.  Coaching sessions are essential in helping people to work through the changes and shorten the learning curve which in turns saves the organization money.  By providing coaching, people can work through their issues until they are comfortable enough to take over the new roles and responsibilities that come with implementation of the change.

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Clarity and specifics on expectations and measurement create empowerment

It is important to take the ideas and measurements and create very specific SMART plans and SLAs that detail what are the expectations and measurements of each area/person.  By having a say in the creation of the document (see Lessons Learned a), people need to know what they are expected to do and the signposts that outline how they will know if they are moving toward success.  By having input in the SLAs/SMART plan process, all stakeholders now have a clear idea what is expected of them and an objective measurement of how they are doing so that they can execute the plans.  This allows each stakeholder to become empowered to help meet the goals and measurements laid out in the agreements.

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Nothing is written in stone – set up review dates

Change is now the norm.  The idea of any agreement is that it will be reviewed and updated based on a number of factors – new technology, kinks that develop on the way and change in corporate direction.  It should be emphasized that nothing that is created within the new initiative is written in stone and that changes will be made to deal with new situations that arise.  This also gives people the opportunity feel more at ease about the agreements as they will be periodically reviewed.  As part of this, it should be put directly into the SLA/SMART plan a review date where the documents and processes will be reviewed to determine what changes (if any) need to be made.

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Conclusion

A number of changes have happened at Jeffboat.  Maintenance is being scheduled more regularly and there has started to be a shift from a ‘reactive’ maintenance culture to a more preventative one.  There is a clearer understanding of roles and responsibilities for both maintenance and production which has led to a more collaborative relationship with regards to maintenance.  Everything now has a work order attached and there has been a significant mindset shift in stores as people can no longer just try to ‘find’ the parts they need and all materials have work orders attached so that proper inventory levels are maintained and there is a significantly shorter lead time required to get the rights parts.

There is a now a more comprehensive maintenance strategy in place with ownership of the process by both maintenance and production supervisors and managers who created the change themselves.

The collaboration between maintenance and production has led to a comprehensive maintenance handbook and SOPs which means that overall the maintenance at Jeffboat has made significant and measurable strides forward and has become significantly more productive and preventative instead of reactive which means greater profitability for the company as equipment downtime decreases.

All change is ongoing and Jeffboat has begun to lay the foundation to move it towards the elusive goal of excellence as it introduces new software and continues to refine it process and procedures.

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This quote from Terry Wireman best sums up the new attitude that is developing at Jeffboat:

Yesterday’s excellence is today’s standard and tomorrow’s mediocrity.

Resistance to CHANGE in the maintenance business – part 1

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This is a two part success story about how an iconic American ship builder chose to take the courageous step into CHANGE.  This first part lays the foundation of why a ship builder would need to change, plus gives insight into the challenges associated with such a decision.  Part two will give more details on that change process experienced by the ship builder, and help relate their success to how other maintenance or engineering professionals can achieve the same success.

But first the ship building icon…

After many years in business, the maintenance management team realized they needed to change.  Why?  Because, although the ships were still being built as strong and true as ever, the maintenance process they were using to maintain the manufacturing infrastructure was sinking, so to speak.

Fast forward to the current day, and we know now that all it took for this to be a success story was some flexible thinking among it’s dedicated staff, and a little help from their friends at TRO Maintenance Solutions.

So why does it take so much courage to commit to change?  Well the answer is simple.  All of us have tried change something in the past.  Usually the first thing we encounter is resistance.  Whether that resistance comes from within us, or around us, it is the number one killer of change.

When implementing a maintenance management strategy, a critical component to most certainly deal with every time is the inevitable resistance to change.  Whether it is the introduction of new software or a complete overhaul of the maintenance function, the process of change usually represents the involvement of disruptive technology.  A “thought-path” of least resistance might tell us that most changes are really just improvements on something old and, thus, the old paradigms can be used as a starting point.  However, there are often changes that organizations need to make (whether they do or not is another story) that serve to disrupt the dominant paradigm, rather than sustaining it.  These types of shifts usually involve disruptive technologies and make the old things less important or obsolete.  The problem with these disruptive changes is that people will still attempt to apply the old paradigms to the new realities.  This is a mistake, which leads to resistance. When this mistake is being made, the person feeling feeling and thus spreading the resistance are, in a sense, trying to understand the car as nothing more than a carriage without horses.

In part 2 of this story, we will learn how the following elements played out at the ship building business in manner that resulted in a very successful change for the better:

  • Disruptive Change
  • How to change mindset – moving from the horseless carriage to the car
    • Model for Sustainable Improvement
  • Using the Flexible Thinker®
  • Implementing the learning strategy
  • Lessons learned

Not Just for Maintenance: How CMMS Benefits Other Functions, Part I

It’s true that CMMS is typically designed for maintenance operations. With the advancement of cloud-based CMMS/EAM today, however, well-designed platforms have become an essential system for other departments within, and outside of, the organization. A Spend Matters interview with Michael Croasdale, senior project manager at Source One Management Services, relays that MRO service providers should be lock-step in line with client companies, to the degree that they’re sharing “specific data to benchmark pricing, [ensuring] service levels exceed industry standard and [helping] to institute industry best practices.” One way to maintain this alignment, of course, is through supplier access to the client’s CMMS. Internally, functions such as Human Resources, EH&S, QA/QC, Engineering, Operations, Supply Chain, and Finance also stand to benefit from regular usage of CMMS. As Part I of this series, we’ll look at how Engineering and Quality can experience improvements in their respective business processes through their CMMS roles and maintenance collaboration.

The Scenario

Let’s set the scene: while performing calibrations recently, your Quality Manager found unsatisfactory deviations in feed rates from a volumetric feeder, according to the Asset Trend Analysis generated by your CMMS. An automatic e-mail notification is generated by the CMMS, based on the equipment’s condition, to an Engineer to troubleshoot the issue.

The Action

volumetric feeder

By including your Quality and Engineering teams as roles within your CMMS, QA can automatically monitor and trend equipment data while Engineering can define the PMs to address deviations.

Your Engineer then creates a PM work order, defining the appropriate tasks or steps in the correct order and references the necessary documentation, associating parts, estimated hours, and assigning the PM based on skill qualification. She checks the PM procedures against Standard Operating Procedures (SOP), but finds a PM task is incorrect when returning the equipment back to service, however. The PM procedure is then revised with added verification steps, including a series of work order status approvals, and uploaded “visual aids” when setting load cells.

The assigned PM work order is routed through your Maintenance Planner for actual Technician assignment, which is confirmed after checking your CMMS’ PM Planner to avoid scheduling conflicts and unnecessary overtime. The assigned Tech receives an automatic e-mail notification of the PM work order, and also sees the new PM listed on his CMMS Dashboard. He performs the work as requested, following the outlined steps, and indicates the material used and records his labor through the CMMS’ mobile app labor timer on his iPhone. The Tech adds a few comments about the feeder and his signature to complete the work order.

The Resolution

Your Maintenance Supervisor receives an automatic e-mail notifying her of the completed work order, which requires her signature approval. After reviewing the work, the Supervisor is satisfied and signs off on the work order. The Quality Manager receives notification of this approved, completed work order via an automatic e-mail. He can go about other tasks, as he knows that the feeder issue has been addressed successfully.

The Catch

But what if your Maintenance Supervisor isn’t satisfied with the Tech’s work or the current status of the feeder? She can reject the work order, re-routing it back to the Maintenance Planner and the Tech. The work order can be re-opened for continued work by the same Tech or re-assigned by the Planner as needed.

This is just one sample CMMS business process workflow out of many different variations that may include multi-layered approval processes, routing, and notification setups. But by incorporating your Quality and Engineering teams into an advanced CMMS, you can enable better communication, increased productivity, and improved efficiency across your enterprise.

Famous Operations: What can we learn?

Facility Maintenance

Let’s face it: Not every facility is the same. While the concept of preventive maintenance may seem pretty cut-and-dried for the layman, in reality, it can be pretty complex and open to interpretation based upon the type of facility you are in charge of. With that in mind, sometimes, it is a good idea to tour other factories and buildings to get a sense of what other companies are doing and maybe take a few of their tricks back to your department. You never know: You may just learn a thing or two!

All around the globe, factories and warehouses are brimming with reliability professionals, all after the same goal: keeping their business up and running and trying to make their department a profit center instead of a resource drain. Companies can live and die based on their preventative and proactive maintenance plans; production errors, too much downtime, and workplace injuries can be more disastrous to a company than bad PR or a poor sales quarter.

Fortunately, there are industry leaders to look at and study worldwide to see what their maintenance managers are doing to help keep things on track. For instance, food facilities have to put an extra focus on handling and preparation procedures as well as food safety protocols, whereas a chemical manufacturer may emphasize work safety and spill prevention.

In reality, all facilities need to worry about core issues: reducing downtime, keeping grounds safe for workers and customers, increasing production, properly managing assets, and efficiently managing machine or equipment maintenance.

Hershey is a great example of a large company that you can learn a thing or two from in terms of managing a facility. One of the largest chocolate providers in the world, Hershey produces a large array of edible goods, each requiring its own set of custom molds and production processes. Chocolate goes through heating and cooling steps to ensure that your candy bar arrives not only delicious but with a certain consistency and appearance as well. Because of this, keeping the assembly line flowing is pivotal; any shutdown can result in ruined batches of candy and a significant loss of profits.

Cross-contamination is another concern for food manufacturers. Chocolate producers, such as Cadbury, whose main production facility lies in Bournville, England, must be careful to ensure that plain chocolate products do not accidentally take on peanut dust during manufacture, as consumers with nut allergies could be negatively affected. Strict quality standards must be in place to ensure that this delicious but hazardous breach does not occur!

Boeing may not be in the food business, but they can certainly teach us a thing or two about the importance of eliminating downtime or, at the very least, responding to emergencies rapidly. Across the globe, thousands of airplanes are preparing to take off at any moment. Some carry passengers, while others carry cargo, but at the end of the day, any delay in operation can cost a business thousands of dollars per minute. With that in mind, Boeing not only needs to produce quality parts and machinery but respond rapidly when a vendor needs an emergency part to get their plane up and running again. Having a supply network in place to handle incidents such as this is crucial to a company like Boeing and possibly to your own business as well.

Meanwhile, Dow Chemical is a producer of many household products that we use in the home and office everyday. By the very nature of their business, their employees must deal with potentially hazardous chemicals night and day (the word is even in their name, folks). When spills happen, it isn’t just a matter of lost profit, but it can be a safety hazard as well. Having procedures in place and training employees on proper materials handling and cleanup is of utmost importance to a company like Dow. Managing safety gear and keeping up to date with the latest compliance standards are equally important, and you can bet your last dollar that Dow Chemical maintenance pros have a top-notch system in place to keep track of these things.

So next time you are visiting a new city or are away on travel, consider taking a tour of a local factory or manufacturer. Let the company know you are “in the biz” and maybe they will give you a behind-the-scenes peek at how they keep their organization in tip-top shape. Maybe you can bring something back to your own facility to make your maintenance processes even better!

Taking on Root Cause Analysis with Preventive Maintenance Software

Preventive Maintenance Software Analysis

Whenever an organization has a major failure of any sort, the top priority is to recover from the immediate damage or problems. From there, the next step is to keep it from ever happening again. Root cause analysis is a vital corrective step, allowing you to identify where losses are taking place and how they can be mitigated to improve equipment reliability and performance.

Root cause analysis is a maintenance troubleshooting method that helps organizations identify and control the systemic causes of a maintenance problem. When you experience a problem, you have to start by asking why the problem occurred. You repeat this process until you uncover the underlying cause. Toyota made the “5 Whys” method of root cause analysis famous. This method involves asking, “Why did this happen?” repeatedly until the cause is determined. Then you can come up with a long-term corrective action that will fix the underlying issue.

It’s important to go beyond the lowest level root cause because you could experience similar breakdowns again in the future. A string of failures usually leads to the problem, so it’s necessary to find a solution at each level of a root cause analysis.

Data is the Key

In order to conduct an effective root cause analysis, data is vital. Indeed, the more data that is available from an unbiased source, the better the chances of identifying the appropriate root cause of any failure. Unfortunately, finding an unbiased source of data can be problematic, as all people are by definition biased from their experiences and perspective.

In the context of asset failure, this is where preventive maintenance software becomes invaluable. All the relevant data for a given asset or class of assets is an ad hoc report away. If it has been utilized properly, the preventive maintenance software will contain a complete history of the asset, as well as detail the maintenance that should have been completed on the asset, according to both industry standards and/or manufacturer suggestions. The information contained in a CMMS system can be leveraged to carry out a root cause analysis. The solution that results can then form part of the equipment knowledge base.

Providing a Platform for Informed Decision Making

The end goal of any root cause analysis is to identify the changes that need to be made. These changes generally flow into one or more of the following categories: people, processes, and technology.

  • People: It is possible that the appropriate processes were established to prevent this type of failure, and that the technology was correctly identifying steps to prevent the failure, but that one or more individuals did not follow through on the correct actions.
  • Processes: Conversely, the data provided from the preventive maintenance software could point out a flaw in the processes associated with preventive maintenance. For example, the software could exclude the maintenance profiles for certain asset classes, or maintenance technicians may be instructed to only follow the maintenance processes identified by the software instead of also applying their expertise.
  • Technology: While any CMMS software is only as good as the data entered into it, it is also possible that the preventive maintenance software was not functioning properly. Perhaps integration across the various systems was incorrectly applied, or your organization has simply outgrown the software.

The effectiveness of root cause analysis largely depends on the amount of time spent preparing for it by carrying out a thorough investigation, collecting sufficient evidence, identifying the correct team members, and properly planning a root cause analysis meeting with the right people involved. It is of utmost importance to gather and analyze all relevant data in order to determine which of these factors played a part in the failure.

Perform Root Cause Analysis with the Help of Preventive Maintenance Software

If you are looking to implement maintenance software in your organization, DPSI can help. We have been in the industry for nearly 30 years and have over 50,000 satisfied users in 50 countries.

CMMS 101: 12 Maintenance Software Terms You Should Know

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This article was written by Hippo CMMS and appeared on their blog. We are sharing it because we think the content can benefit people new to computerized maintenance management systems and more experienced users.
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If you are new to the computerized maintenance management software (CMMS) world, you’re likely being inundated with acronyms and terms that are unfamiliar to you. To clear the confusion, we’ve developed a CMMS software cheat sheet outlining 12 common maintenance software terms that are likely to appear during your software search. We hope this list gives you a broader understanding of what’s to come as you get more involved with your CMMS software.


Term #1: CMMS, Computerized Maintenance Management System

CMMS is a database that streamlines and tracks all aspects of an organization’s maintenance operations.  As operations become larger and more complex, the need for a centralized database and access to key information increases. CMMS software assists maintenance managers and workers to perform their day-to-day jobs more effectively by providing real-time data on machine and equipment downtime, inventory levels, upcoming scheduled and preventive maintenance, work order status and more.


Term #2: EAM, Enterprise Asset Management

Although the terms CMMS and facility management are commonly used in place of EAM, enterprise asset management is a much broader term.  It refers to software that enables managers to view and control a company’s assets holistically, while optimizing the efficiencies of the entire operation, not just maintenance and facilities management.


Term #3: CAFM, Computer Aided Facility Management

This is software designed to help facility managers optimized the utilization of space and facilities, plan preventive maintenance, better manage reactive maintenance, and improve facility’s management processes. CAFM is a term used more outside of North America.


Term #4: FMS, Facility Management Software Systems

North Americans often use Facility Management Software (FMS) as opposed to CAFM. Both of these terms, however, describe an almost identical system. Facility management software systems come equipped with maintenance management, space management, utilities tracking, inventory management and other tools.


Term #5: MMS, Maintenance Management System

Maintenance management systems refer to manual methods for tracking maintenance operations as opposed to computerized methods. 20 years ago when CMMS was not as common, MMS was a frequently used term. Its use is declining with more companies adopting maintenance management software.


Term #6: PM, Planned Maintenance

Planned maintenance is pretty straight forward. It refers to maintenance activities that have been planned or scheduled in advance. Most often planned maintenance involves routine preventive maintenance tasks or inspections.


Term #7: PPM, Planned Preventive Maintenance

This is just another term for preventive maintenance or planned maintenance. Some call it PPM, so we thought we’d include it in the list. Planned preventive maintenance refers to regular and routine inspection, detection and correction of equipment and facilities in order to prevent breakdown and failure and extend asset life.


Term #8: PdM, Predictive Maintenance

CMMS can help you predict when maintenance will be required. Predictive maintenance forecasts when equipment failure will occur, and allows you to intervene by taking preventive measures. Having a predictive maintenance strategy allows companies to save on maintenance costs, cut costs on parts and supplies and reduce equipment downtime.


Term #9: KPI, Key Performance Indicator

Key performance indicators are metrics used by managers to help them evaluate the performance within the company. CMMS software, if configured and used properly can allow managers and other users to view real-time KPIs on dashboards and reports. Some of these include equipment downtime, labor utilization, work orders completed on time, maintenance costs, and a few more complicated ones listed below.


Term #10: MTBF, Mean time between failures

This is a metric that shows the projected time between failures of equipment or a machine. For example, if a machine broke down after 200 hrs., and the next at 250 hrs., and then at 300 hrs., the MTBF is 250 hrs. Knowing the mean time between failures will help you predict future maintenance. Basically, the higher the MTBF, the better!


Term #11: MTBR, Mean time between repairs

This is very similar to MTBF and often causes some confusion. The MBTR calculation seems to be counting the necessary instances of repairs during a period of time and dividing the latter number by the former. Mean time between repairs differs from MTBF in that MTBF typically counts only how long a machine operates before failure, whereas MTBR includes the time spent on repair, which can have a significant effect on the results.


Term #12: MTTR, Mean time to repair

As you get deeper into your CMMS software you can extract metrics like Mean Time to Repair. It represents the average time to repair equipment. To calculate MTTR take the total unplanned or corrective maintenance time of failures and divide it by the total number of corrective or unplanned maintenance work orders. As you start extracting MTTR you should be aiming to achieve lower figures.


Master these 12 common terms and you’ll be well on your way to finding the perfect maintenance software for your organization. For more information on CMMS software and successful implementation strategies, be sure to check out our CMMS Expert Series or contact a Software Specialist.

Asset Criticality and Risk Ranking – Recorded Webinar

Wouldn’t it be useful to know precisely how much time and resource should be applied to each of your assets?  With Asset Criticality, organizations are able to rate assets to determine how critical each piece of equipment is to areas such as safety, product quality, customer issues, environmental issues, and production.

During this 40 minute recorded session, guest speaker Terry Harris from Reliable Process Solutions LLC provides an overview of Asset Criticality and Risk Ranking and discusses how to:

  1. Derive the criticality rating for each piece of equipment
  2. Understand which equipment is important and critical to the process
  3. Assign resources and time based on equipment criticality value

EAM and GIS: Connecting the dots

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The role of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) has changed profoundly—from basic mapping applications to becoming an integral part of enterprise decision making. Why? Because these systems have evolved to the point where they can be combined with other data to help identify patterns—where customers are buying, where your organization is spending, where waste is occurring, how to deploy personnel, where coverage areas exist, and how to prioritize issues.

An enterprise asset management (EAM) system combined with GIS greatly improves maintenance efficiency by helping you easily identify and pinpoint widely dispersed assets for preventive maintenance and regular inspections, and by consolidating field work assignments based on job groupings in a selected geographic area. The ability to access assets right on a map–creating work orders and viewing asset history from the map objects—is a real time saver, and provides a big-picture view of emerging patterns.

Discover how Infor EAM enables your customer service representatives, field service planners, schedulers, and field technicians to quickly and efficiently find information, keep better records, create work orders, plan routes, and address issues.

To learn more about Infor EAM GIS, read the brochure.

Recorded Webinar: Facility Management

Webinar: Facility Management

Missed our webinar on Facility Management? No worries, we have a recording here for you.
Learn how easy it is to manage space allocation, plan and execute moves, generate in-depth reports, satisfy emergency preparation requirements, and analyze costs associated with renovations, department charge backs and personnel changes.