In the world of business the struggle to survive, the struggle to remain relevant, the struggle to have a competitive advantage are real. To fight this struggle companies have to design, engineer and implement various programs, strategies and process in to stay competitive and reduce operational costs. Process improvement tools such as statistical process control lean operation, manufacturing kaizen, six-sigma are all very useful approaches.
In the industrial sector the major function that companies are looking at in order to reduce costs and stay competitive is the maintenance function.
What exactly is the maintenance function?
There are plenty of definitions of maintenance is, here are a few that stand out:
“Ensuring a unit is fit for purpose, with maximum availability at minimum costs”.
“Combination of all technical, administrative and managerial action during life cycle of an item intended to retain it or restore it to a state in which it can perform the required function” –European standards Committee.
Cost reduction in maintenance
Maintenance, like any function in a company is rather costly. Maintenance costs have a direct impact to keep careful records on them. Since there costs are linked with the company profit margins, management puts high emphasise on the cost reduction of the maintenance. Cost reduction in maintenance does not necessarily mean a reduction in service or in the quality of service, if executed correctly.
When it comes to reducing maintenance costs some companies tend to make a number of mistakes in their approach. Most organisation focus directly on cutting maintenance cost, as a result maintenance costs go down temporarily, only to increase much more than the initial savings. In addition reliability goes down making way for losses that may be substantial. The root of problem is short-sightedness.
To avoid making such mistake, management needs to have a higher...