Archive | March, 2006


3:39 am
March 2, 2006
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Creating Culture Change – A Pathway To Improved Reliability

improving_maintenance_and_reliability_through_cullture_changePart I of this four-part series introduced the concept that “culture” actually can be the root cause of failure of change programs. This month, the author discusses the elements that comprise “culture.”

There are four elements that comprise what we refer to as “culture.” They are: organizational values, role models, rites and rituals and cultural infrastructure. All of them work in conjunction with each another to make up that rather elusive thing we call “organizational culture.” When people talk about making a “cultural change,” they mean that they wish to alter the value system, displace people who are emulated (but not in line with the new values), change the rites and rituals and reframe the cultural infrastructure. Think about the implication of this change effort. It certainly is a major step for any firm to take. That’s why it is so difficult to implement–and why it is so difficult to make stick over the long-term.

Element # 1: Organizational values
Organizational values are the beliefs and assumptions that an organization believes to be true and uses as a set of guiding principles for managing its everyday business. They are what collectively drive decision-making within a company. For instance, an organizational value may be that production is the only thing of importance and, when things break, rapid response is needed in order to return them to service. Another example of an organizational value is that equipment should never fail where the failure has not been anticipated through proactive maintenance work initiatives. Although these two examples are very different, in each case, the value described drives the collective decision-making process for the organization.

What are your organization’s values? Thinking about and identifying them may not be as easy as you think; the true values of a company are not always written down. Instead, they reflect how the employees of the company collectively behave, how they conduct their business and what they believe the true measures of success are. Organizational values for our discussion can be defined as:

. . . a company’s basic, collectively understood, universally applied and wholly accepted set of beliefs about how to behave within the context of the business. . . They also describe what achieving success feels like. These values are internalized by everyone in the company. Thus, they are the standard for accepted behavior. When faced with a problem, those within an organization will invariably make a decision that reflects the organizational values of that business. These decisions often are not made consciously. That’s because organizational values are internalized and taken for granted.When you make a decision supported by the values, you feel comfortable.When your decison is not supported by those values, you sense something is not right with your world.

Element #2: Role models
Role models are people within the company who perform in a fashion that the organization can and wants to emulate. They are successful individuals who stand out in the organization by performing in line with the corporate value system.

Role models show people that if they wish to be successful, they need to follow the values set up for the organization. These role models are then copied by those who work within the business because they show how to perform within the culture. In addition, the role models are used as examples for newcomers to show them how they should behave if they wish to succeed. For emphasis, consider these three key components of a role model:

  • Top of the organization.Most people who are used as role models are at or near the top of the organization’s hierarchy. These are the people we view as the most successful. They are the managers of our departments, the leaders– the ones who set the direction for the business. The key word here is successful. Because those at the top are perceived as successful, we tend to use them as role models. There is another reason why we often choose our leaders as role models. They set the expectations of what we are to accomplish at work. In most cases, these expectations are in line with their expectations for themselves. As a result,we emulate and assume their style because we are all working towards the same end. In addition, failure to achieve these expectations usually has severe negative outcomes. Therefore, modeling the manager to achieve the desired results makes sense.
  • Successful within the organization’s culture. The second component is that role models are not merely successful–they are successful within the existing culture. This is very important. Since role models are those who we emulate and since they have shown that they can be successful in the existing culture, the existing culture is continuously reinforced.
  • A style we can identify with and adopt. Even though some people are successful within the culture, there still may be reasons why we would not choose them as our role models. If we truly want to use people as role models, we need not only to view them as successful, but also to feel comfortable adopting their style of management.

Suppose you are the type of person who firmly believes that all people within the workforce have unique value and should be treated with dignity and respect. Further suppose that your manager (who is a successful part of the organization) has achieved this position by acting and behaving in exactly the opposite fashion. Could you accept this person as a role model? Your answer probably would be “no.”

Although you want to behave in a manner that will provide you with a successful career, the behavior of your manager could never fit your personal beliefs and manner of conducting business.

The role model that is in conflict with our personal value system is worth further discussion. This type of person is the most difficult to work with.His/her beliefs and actions are so opposed to our own that it is virtually impossible to adopt his or her style of management or behavior without violating who we are.

There are alternatives when you are confronted with this type of situation. You can leave the organization and seek work elsewhere. You can attempt to transfer to another department. Or, you can try to stick it out and survive, hoping that the individual will leave before you do.

Not everyone is a positive role model.We often are presented with “good bad examples.” These are people who we can look at and say “here is someone who I do not wish to act like.” If you examine why you feel this way and adopt behaviors that are opposite and more in line with how you feel you should behave, then these individuals will have done you a great service. They will have shown you a model that you will choose to reject for a more positive (and opposite) one when you become a role model later on in your career.

Element #3: Rites and rituals
Rites and rituals are the work processes that go on from day to day within a company. They are so ingrained in how people conduct business that they are not actually visible to those within the organization. Rituals are “how things are done around here.” Rites are a higher level of rituals. They are the events that reinforce the behavior demonstrated in the rituals.

A ritual is a rule or set of rules that guide our day-to-day work behavior. Rituals are taken for granted because they are an integral part of what our jobs are and how we do them. As they are repeated daily, rituals become an accepted part of how business is conducted; over time, they become invisible to those who follow them. Yet, they are extremely important, not only because they define what we do and how we do it, but because they represent our culture and the value system in place in our plant. Furthermore, rituals are taught to new employees so that they understand “how the work gets done around here.” Rituals guide how people communicate and interact.

Because rituals are so ingrained in our work, outsiders might say they are blindly followed –even if they make little or no sense.Moreover, they often are fiercely defended, simply because “that’s how things are done.”This explains, to some degree, why new programs or processes that conflict with plant rituals encounter strong resistance when they are implemented. Each of us has had this experience.

The first thing we are given on our first day of work is training in how the work is conducted–the rituals of the job or department and, more importantly, the culture in which we now reside. As a new employee, this training is highly significant because we are being told not only how to act, but also what is needed for us to be successful.

Many years ago, I took on my first supervisory role as a foreman at my plant. Before the foreman that I was replacing moved over to another area, we spent an entire week together. I learned how to assign work to the workforce, how to interact with production, how to order materials and many other tasks.

At the time, our plant was totally reactive in the way we conducted maintenance. When things broke down, our most important task was to repair them as quickly as possible and return them to service.

Still, I was surprised to learn, after lunch on Friday, that the entire crew had not been assigned additional work, but, instead, remained at their staging area. When I questioned this policy, the foreman who I was replacing told me the crew was waiting for things to break so that they could rapidly respond to the problem(s), make the needed repair(s) and avoid weekend overtime.

Being somewhat naïve, I asked why crew memebers couldn’t be assigned jobs that could easily be interrupted. That way, I reasoned,we could get some work accomplished while at the same time still be available to respond to plant emergencies.

I was told, in no uncertain terms, not to “rock the boat” because “this was how things are done around here.”

This was the ritual followed by each foreman. The culture was not about to let me change it! In our context, therefore, a ritual is an invisible day-to-day work practice that is accepted as how work is performed within the organization’s culture. The ritual provides everyone with a foundation for how work is handled.

Processes outside of the accepted rituals are considered alien.An organization will feel extreme discomfort when new rituals outside the accepted norm are introduced, even though it may not know exactly why.

When I suggested an alternate solution to waiting for things to break, I was reprimanded, even though the outcome would have been the same. We still could have responded to production’s emergency needs.

Rites are company ceremonies or events that reinforces our rituals. In a sense, they provide a stage for those involved to dramatize the culture and organizational values to those in attendance. Rituals and rites go hand in hand because, without accepted rituals, rites do not exist.

Rites can cover a wide spectrum of an organization’s events. They include performance reviews, training, conferences, service awards and departmental and group meetings, even pats on the back for jobs well done. Let’s look at a simple example.

Consider the foreman who kept his crew in their staging area on Friday afternoon waiting to respond to the emergency needs of production. Several rites were associated with this single ritual.

The first ritual was the “pat on the back.” When production called, maintenance was available to make the quick fix. If the repairs were successful, the foreman would have received the “pat” for doing a good job–a rite positively reinforcing a plant ritual. This sort of success would eventually translate into another rite–a positive performance review, a better salary and a chance for promotion.

Conversely, if the ritual were not followed, the associated rite would have a severe negative connotation. In our scenario, production would complain about the foreman’s performance, resulting in other potential problems for the foreman who was out of compliance.My idea about having the crews work on interruptible jobs on Friday afternoons not only violated a maintenance ritual, it also seriously threatened an established set of rites for the foremen–the pat on the back and others of more significance.

Element #4: Cultural infrastructure
Cultural infrastructure is the fourth part of the organizational culture model. This is the informal set of processes that work behind the scenes to pass information, spread gossip and influence behavior of those within the company. The various components of an organization’s structure can be represented as blocks on an organization chart. Although each of these these blocks represents a specific function within the company, none of them can stand alone. They need the connecting lines that tie them together, providing a linkage for all of the individual parts. This linkage is the cultural infrastructure. For our discussion,we will focus on people and communications as the key elements of the cultural infrastructure. These components are the glue that binds together the organizational culture and promotes sustainability of the firm. Thus, our definition of cultural infrastructure is as follows:

. . . the hidden hierarchy of people and communication processes that binds the organization to the culture and sustains it over time. . .

components_of_cultural_infrastructureThe cultural infrastructure includes:

  • Story Tellers–promoting the culture through war stories
  • Keepers of the Faith–mentors and protectors of the culture
  • Whisperers–passers of information behind the scenes
  • Gossips–the hidden day-to-day communication system
  • Spies–passers of sensitive information to those who may or may not need to know
  • Symbols–mechanisms for conveying what and who is important
  • Language–terminology that describes what is done and often how

Each of the cultural infrastructure components listed here can be used to promote cultural change or, conversely, to disrupt it. Table I identifies each component, providing a brief indication of what and how you need to use them to successfully support your change initiatives.

Changing the cultural infrastructure is not an easy task. Great care and patience must be taken if you are going to make the attempt. Cultural infrastructure is a hidden force that, if not dealt with,will most assuredly work to undermine whatever changes you are attempting to implement.

Cultural change and reliability
Fig. 1 describes a reactive repair-based work scenario. First, something breaks down (block 1); the problem is then identified; a maintenance crew dashes in, makes the save and order is restored (block 2).As a result, the crew receives praise from production for a job well done (block 3). The praise is most often immediate and the reactive behavior is, therefore, immediately reinforced.Maintenance is now ready for the next emergency (block 4).

reactive_repair-based_work_scenarioFrom Fig.1, you can see that the organizational values dictate the response from the maintenance organization. In this example,it is “drop what you are doing and fix the equipment that has broken down.”

In many cases this type of response is required. All too often, however, the quick fix or “emergency job” is not really an emergency at all–but rather just someone’s desire to get their job worked ahead of others. Nevertheless, when the call comes in, maintenance responds and is summarily rewarded.

This response and the related reward are the rituals and their reinforcing rites at work.Over time the rapid responders are rewarded for their efforts and become the role models for the organization.

What you see at work here is the perpetuation of the reactive maintenance model. Since we wish to change the culture to one focused on reliability,we need to alter the culture.To accomplish this,we need to change the four elements of culture as follows:

1. The organizational values must be altered. If the values support a reactive behavior it is impossible to change the culture. This is the role of the leadership team.

2. Once the values have been altered, work processes, structure, communication and other basic operational processes must be changed. The rapid response can no longer be tolerated unless it truly is necessary.Additionally, a new reward structure must be put in place to provide those you wish to change with reinforcement for the new set of behaviors you wish them to learn. This is the way you can modify your rituals and their supporting rites.

3. The role models of the reactive process need to adopt the new reliability process or they need to be removed from role-model positions. It is critical that you have the people in place to model the new behavior as it is being implemented.This will work on two levels. First, the organization will see that as work takes place there are people in place showing them the new way “things are going to be done around here.” Second, it proves to the organization that you are serious about the change.

4. Finally, you need to pay careful attention to the key members of the cultural infrastructure. Remember that these individuals are the behindthe- scenes communication network. You need their support. This often can be accomplished by including them in the effort. Coming next month This series continues next month by examining the Eight Elements of Change, the next level at which you need to work to deliver a successful change process. MT

Steve Thomas has more than 35 years of experience in the petrochemical industry, working in the areas of maintenance and reliability. He holds a B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering from Drexel University and M.S. degrees in Systems Engineering and Organizational Dynamics from The University of Pennsylvania.His two books, Successfully Managing Change in Organizations: A Users Guide, and Improving Maintenance and Reliability Through Cultural Change, published by Industrial Press, Inc., reflect his vast knowledge of successful, realworld cultural change and change management techniques.

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3:36 am
March 2, 2006
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Return On Net Assets


Terry Wireman, C.P.M.M. Editorial Director

In the past few columns, we’ve dealt with the expense side of maintenance and reliability and how they affect the capacity of a plant. In this column, we take this one step further and show how it is important to corporate officers. In its recent “Best Plants” competition, Industry Week magazine used a series of indicators to measure plant performance. One of these was Return on Assets (ROA). Simply stated,ROA looks at the profits generated compared to the valuation of a plant assets. If a plant performs efficiently,with little waste in its processes, it generates a higher profit with its asset base.Another plant with identical assets may be less efficiently operated and would show a lower profit for the same asset base.

ROA is being used to scrutinize plants more frequently and is developing into a benchmarking standard. How, though, does the maintenance and reliability (M&R) function impact ROA?

Considering that the formula for ROA is basically profits divided by asset valuation, the M&R function impacts both the numerator and the denominator of the calculation. The asset valuation is determined not just by the physical presence of the asset, but by its contribution to profits. If assets are poorly maintained, they cannot reach design production rates. Hence, to reach the production commitments,more assets are required, increasing the size of the denominator in the ROA calculation.

As for the numerator, profits generated by a company are affected by many factors. Most relate to turning out a product with minimal waste, on time and with the highest quality. The M&R function impacts profits by reducing downtime, maintaining expenses at budgeted levels and removing waste from production. For example, consider the following:

  • Is unplanned downtime a waste?
  • Are product defects related to poor equipment condition a waste?
  • Is WIP to compensate for unreliable equipment a waste?
  • Is working extra shifts to compensate for breakdowns a waste?

The list could go on and on. But, the real question is: What is the impact on profits for each area of waste?

This scenario highlights the real M&R dilemma–how to communicate the impact that maintenance and reliability functions in a plant have on the indicators that are important to company executives and investors. Intuitively, M&R professionals know there is significant impact on the ROA calculation. Subliminally, company executives and investors know the linkage is there, but they fail to see the direct correlation.

As previously discussed, if M&R professionals can’t articulate their business into indicators and financial terms that company executives and investors understand, they will always be counted on the expense slide of the ledger, with a focus on reductions. The only solution is for M&R professionals to educate themselves so they can translate what they do into terms that company executives and investors can clearly understand–and appreciate.

Only then will companies be able to unlock the true secret of competitiveness.Until that time, they will continue to focus primarily on cost reduction. How anemic will industry become before the problem is corrected? MT

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3:31 am
March 2, 2006
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Energy Savings By The Numbers

The Royal Purple plant in Porter, TX, produces synthetic lubricants that are known the world over for their friction-reducing film strength and performance-enhancing properties. The growing popularity of Royal Purple products has resulted in significantly increased production demands. Coincidentally, as that demand has grown, so have energy costs. Thus, Royal Purple management recently requested an audit of pump energy consumption at its production facility.

Two types of pumps are generally used for process services at Royal Purple: internal gear pumps and air-operated diaphragm pumps. Pump duties include unloading raw materials, transfer of materials, product recirculation and unloading of finished products. The liquid viscosities vary greatly and range from very fluid to very viscous (from 5 and 600,000 ssu).

Dealing with a double whammy
The original design for the Royal Purple plant met generally accepted criteria for energy efficiency at the anticipated production levels during the initial plant planning and engineering phases.Unfortunately, the impact of increased production levels, coupled with escalating electrical energy costs, later turned into a true double whammy for the plant.

Not only did the cost per kilowatt-hour increase significantly, but the usage patterns of the pumps and compressors often spiked electricity usage, triggering a very substantial electrical demand charge. A thorough accounting analysis of the electrical charges also revealed that with fees and surcharges factored in, the actual cost per kilowatt-hour was much higher than the more widely quoted base kilowatt-hour charge.

The purpose of the requested energy audit was, first, to understand the situation (i.e. how much energy each pump was consuming), and, secondly, to use this information to make improvements where economically justified, as well as to provide a basis for making more energy-conscious pump selections in the future.

The audit
The first step was to collect the operating conditions of flow, pressure and viscosity. This data was then used to estimate energy consumption at the operating point for each pump.Manufacturer’s selection guides downloaded from the Internet were used to estimate power consumption for the operating conditions.

For the internal gear pumps, power consumption was expressed in terms of BHP or brake horsepower. Brake horsepower is the power required by the pump–it does not take into account motor losses. For the plant’s air-operated diaphragms pumps, power was estimated by taking the CFM required at the operating point, then converting the CFM to BHP using a conversion factor of 4 CFM per horsepower.

pump-energy-comparisonAnnual energy costs for a pump may be calculated by the following formula:

Brake Horsepower x ([.746 HP] / [KW]) x ([$KW] / [HR]) x Annual Operating Hrs.

This formula is useful for making comparisons between pumps. Actual electrical costs will be modestly higher taking into account motor and system losses.With this data, a table and chart can be constructed as in Table I and Fig. 1. Reviewing them leads to some interesting observations:

  1. The air-operated diaphragm pumps take four to almost six times the energy of the internal gear pumps on the services surveyed.
  2. Pumping more viscous liquids widens the energy premium for air-operated diaphragm pumps.
  3. Larger pumps and flows have proportionately greater impact on energy consumption and costs.
  4. Energy costs are directly affected by the number of operating hours.

The bottom line
The energy consumption difference between air-operated diaphragm pumps on the surveyed services is clearly substantial.With that said, many air-operated diaphragm pumps are used for intermittent duty services, only few hours per week, and for these applications, the energy cost impact may be relatively small. Also, if air-operated diaphragm pumps are of a very small size, there may not be enough total energy consumption involved to really matter.

What made such an unwelcome impact on the electric bill for Royal Purple was the fact that many of the company’s pumps are of significant size and many of them are being operated for several thousand hours per year. Some, in fact, are operated continuously at low cycle-rates for recirculation. This is what has caused electricity costs to really add up for the production plant.

But, the electrical cost, while important, is only one of several cost factors to consider in pump selection. For example, an air-operated diaphragm pump can cost approximately $1400 and an electric-motor-driven gear pump for the same service can cost in the neighborhood of $5000. (Add the wire, variable speed drive, pressure transmitter and labor and the total cost jumps to approximately $8,000.) This is why it is so important to take all the factors into consideration. Royal Purple has had close to zero maintenance on its gear pumps, while its air-operated diaphragm pumps have required more maintenance. The company recognizes that growth requires change to operate and maintain this quality focused facility. As is heard around the plant,”we like to think that none of us are as smart as all of us.”

Royal Purple is using the information from this energy audit in two ways. First, it wants to identify existing applications, where the return on investments are attractive enough to justify replacing air-operated diaphragm pumps with internal gear pumps. Secondly, it wants to make sure that any new pumps will be evaluated for energy consumption based on the actual or projected operating conditions.

Granted, energy consumption may not have been primary criteria for pump selection in the past, but by the numbers at today’s rates, it has become an important consideration. Royal Purple and many growing manufacturers today can be more costeffective by partnering with good suppliers to look at the cost to operate their equipment, the associated requirements and projected expansion(s) along with their equipment cost. MT

Pump industry veteran Kevin Delaney is product manager withTuthill Pump Group in Alsip, IL. Telephone: (708) 293-3129; e-mail: He will be a featured speaker on the topic of this energy audit in the Energy Track at the Maintenance and Reliability Technology Summit (MARTS), during the week of April 17, in Rosemont, IL. For more information, log on to or visit www.MTonline. com Bob Matthews is maintenance manager of Royal Purple’s production facilities in Porter, TX.

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3:17 am
March 2, 2006
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The Elusive Weekly Maintenance Schedule

Is your organization (like so many others) missing out on the substantial benefits that resource-leveled weekly reports can provide to a company? You might want to rethink your strategy.

Scheduling has several variations: long-range planning (LRP), shutdown/turnaround/outage scheduling, rolling schedules, weekly schedules and daily plans. All of these are important, but, the weekly schedule process is by far the most significant. It also is the most underutilized tool for work force efficiency.

Most companies assume that their “scheduling tool add-on”would make weekly scheduling easy. They soon discover that what they bought is simply an interface tool to a scheduling product. A further complication is that the interface does not transfer all the needed information across at the right level of detail. Upon discovering these problems, too many users say “this is too hard to use” and give up on one of the most important benefits of a Computerized Maintenance Management System (CMMS)–increased labor productivity.

Where is the problem? The problem could be the software, a lack of perceived benefit for the process, or a training issue. In most cases, it’s simply a software design issue–or lack of design. CMMS vendors have historically relied on a third-party interface to facilitate the scheduling function. They also seem to treat all scheduling requirements the same. This generic approach has given the users a clumsy interface that, at best, only “sort of works.” The result is that very few companies take the time to create a weekly schedule, and even fewer understand how important such a schedule can be to their success.

0306_reeve_img1A resource-leveled weekly schedule adds even more value. This advanced technique requires several processes to already be in place. For example, if the backlog isn’t planned, it will be very difficult to create a schedule. Too often, this critical process is overlooked and a company will stumble when it comes to actual implementation. The typical CMMS software and training regimen has a work order screen for entering schedule dates and work priority fields, plus an ability to print a report that lists work for the week. However, it often overlooks both resource leveling and compliance analysis. In other words, during implementations, the process of deciding what is the most critical work for the best use of limited resources is overlooked. There are several points to consider when determining if your company should develop weekly schedules:

  1. You should not have to hire additional staff to generate and operate a weekly schedule.
  2. You should not have to migrate this data outside the CMMS when the majority of the information needed for processing is already in the CMMS.
  3. Resource leveling is viewed as a scheduling process that should be a part of the CMMS product.
  4. There are few to no logic ties (work dependencies) that require critical path analysis.

Interestingly, for any given site, more manhours (across a one-year time span) are spent developing and maintaining daily/weekly schedules than are committed to shutdown/ turnaround scheduling. The everyday planner/ scheduler not only represents the largest need for this capability, he/she also uses the CMMS more than any other employee.

Weekly scheduling – what and why?
A weekly schedule is an excellent management tool since every employee can easily relate to “what needs to get done this week.” More importantly, this design promotes proactive maintenance, which is more cost-efficient than traditional reactive maintenance practices.

One week also is an ideal amount of time for forecasting a set of work that all departments can support. For example, warehouse and operations employees can be more easily convinced that the specific jobs on the schedule actually will be completed.

Management’s goal should be to present a believable schedule that maximizes the use of craft labor without incurring overtime–and that effectively reduces backlog.Working with a schedule that accurately forecasts work activities enhances worker productivity, builds teamwork and keeps the staff focused on a common goal.

0306_reeve_img2Resource leveling
A resource-leveled weekly schedule provides a logical way to balance required work versus available man-hours.Once a week, the resource pool is assessed for available man-hours. This information is then compared to the backlog of work. This may be a manual process or it may utilize a resource-leveling program. A preliminary schedule is then taken to the weekly schedule meeting where attendees can refine it.

Without resource leveling, the process becomes subjective and open to error. That, unfortunately, is common practice for many sites.

The weekly schedule meeting
If the management team waits until the meeting to select the work, it is already too late to gain maximum value from the meeting. The weekly schedule meeting is the time to refine the schedule–not build it. That said, the meeting should be flexible. This is the time to confirm whether the scheduled work is actually what should be done.Work can be added or subtracted, based on parameters not known to the CMMS. All affected departments should be present to provide input and gain consensus. Good communication between maintenance and operations will improve schedule accuracy.

An example of an appropriate change at the weekly schedule meeting might be selecting related work based on the craft traveling to a remote location. This “force selection,” is called opportunistic scheduling, and it is an acceptable practice. Resource leveling would be performed a second time to incorporate these changes, followed by re-issuance of the schedule. Since the resource pool is fixed, some work may drop off.

When a user site initiates resource-leveled scheduling, it’s typical to discover inaccuracies in the maintenance backlog. This is because the automated selection of work depends on accurate data.

0306_reeve_img3The process
Simply implementing a fundamental planning and scheduling system should help improve productivity. Before each work day, the maintenance supervisor will create his daily schedule– from the weekly schedule. The work is linked to the worker in the daily schedule. Each day, progress is provided on work performed and the CMMS is updated. Examples of progress could be: work was started, completed or placed on hold.

The daily schedule should be created from the weekly schedule.However, the typical daily schedule includes reactive maintenance not shown on the weekly schedule.

If the maintenance organization is only issuing a daily schedule, this does not eliminate the need for a weekly schedule. If a company relies only on a daily schedule, it leads to increased reactive maintenance.

Schedule compliance
Once a schedule is issued, every attempt should be made to make sure these activities occur. Sometimes unforeseen events prevent the start of work. Possible “reason codes” might be:

  • Operations would not let maintenance take the equipment down
  • Parts not available (even though the job was planned)
  • Management said “not to perform”
  • Ran out of time or craft availability
  • Unexpected repair situation discovered causing job delay

0306_reeve_img4This information should be recorded in the database under a compliance tracking table – recorded by the week number and work order record. The goal is to make a schedule that is >80% accurate each week.

Resource pool
To increase the efficiency of producing a weekly schedule, a CMMS should provide easy entry screens for:

1.Worker labor information–including the labor identifier, craft code and the assigned calendar/shift code.
2. Yes/No worker availability
–is this craft person an available worker? A worker, such as a leading hand may be in a craft, but not normally assigned to work activities. (A leading hand may be the most senior person in the craft for larger maintenance organizations.)
3.Yes/No craft availability
–an entire craft code may be marked as “no resource leveling necessary.”
4. Calendar/shift definition
–able to match any possible rotating shift combination and company holiday schedule.
5. Planned worker absences for next week– data stored as non-available time per worker.
6. Efficiency factor by craft
–which relates to the “percentage of time expected to be available to work on the schedule each week.”This factor allows for an expected amount of reactive maintenance and is critical in creating an accurate resource pool.

Given the above tools, it is easy to maintain a resource pool. The working level normally stays on the same shift, although rotating, for years at a time. The only variable is when someone says something like, “I have jury duty next Wednesday and Thursday.”

In the end, resource-pool management is not an exact science.We are just trying to get close. Typically you can find a staff member in the maintenance group who already maintains this information. The challenge is to get this data into the CMMS.

The maintenance backlog The accuracy of the maintenance backlog is a critical part of the process. If it is not accurate, then one might wonder how any analytical decisions should be made from the CMMS–including KPI measurements. The minimum amount of information needed within the maintenance backlog for this process to work is:

  • A valid work order record assigned to a supervisor or an area with a clearly defined scope.
  • The work order is in “ready” status, meaning it has been planned and is ready to work with no material or operational constraints, i.e. “requires major system shutdown.”
  • Estimated man-hours by craft and (minimum) number of personnel needed to perform this job are entered.
  • Any long-lead material items required for this work are on-site, and linked to this work order.
  • The work order has a valid work type, such as repair activity, preventive maintenance, major maintenance or design work.
  • The work order has an assigned priority; ideally, that’s a calculated priority based on asset criticality. There are many more steps to properly planning a work order. But, from a resourceleveling viewpoint, these form the minimum criteria.

Manual vs automatic resource leveling Resource leveling balances the resource demand (backlog) with the resource pool (worker availability). It can be done using paper and pencil (manually) or with software (automatically).

Either approach involves a comparison of required work hours to available hours. If done automatically, however, you save a substantial amount of time. This factor is even more significant when the schedule has to be regenerated during the course of a scheduling meeting.

Subjective selection: ineffective Without resource leveling, the staff is basically guessing how many jobs can be completed each week. Maintenance supervisors will routinely guess at a “safe” number they want to work on, or select priority work that might have come up in the last two day–because this is what they (and management) remember as being important.

This type of subjective selection technique often leads to a less-than-desired backlog reduction rate. That’s because there is no way the human mind can evaluate an entire backlog of work that takes into consideration multi-craft work orders, craft estimates, work priorities and worker/craft availability.

What if you have no job planners? Keep in mind that not all company sites are the same.

Some are involved in manufacturing, some in heavy industry and some in utilities–these typically have detailed job plans and work packages. On the other hand, some facility maintenance organizations may not have job planners to keep up with a weekly schedule.

With or without a planner, it’s usually possible to find someone to create a rough estimate and enter it into the CMMS.Here are the questions to be asked and answered in this situation:

  1. What is the repair problem? (Enter the problem description and work type.)
  2. What should be the priority of this work?
  3. What craft is required to perform this work? Can this be done with just one craft, or does it require two? Number of personnel? Estimated man-hours?
  4. Are there any long-lead type material requirements? (Yes/No)

Typical facility maintenance takes only five to 10 minutes to enter the above information. Once entered, the status can be changed to “ready.” This type of interaction helps the maintenance department quickly develop an accurate, useable “planned backlog.”

Depending on the situation, it may take several “more-than-40-hour weeks” to catch up on backlog planning. The maintenance staff should not be afraid of job planning. The worst situation is to not have any planned estimates entered on the work order, thus leaving it up to the worker to define all requirements up front –as well as do the work.

Communication The subject of communication between operations and maintenance often raises strong opinions. Some companies simply say, “enter a job priority for all new work and apply

The time it takes How much time is involved to create an effective weekly schedule? The answer depends on the amount of typing and screen manipulations a person must perform to set up this type of schedule each week.

0306_reeve_img5For example, the person creating the schedule may be creating a list of work and downloading this information to other software programs for further editing and/or data sorting. They also may be pushing the data to a P3 or Microsoft Project (MSP) tool. Those who track the process of pushing this data from and back to the scheduling tool usually find that a substantial amount of effort is involved.

Typically, the data moved outside the CMMS is quickly out of sync with reality due to constant updates of the CMMS data from the insertion of new work and changing priorities based on short-term emergencies. What if work priorities or calendar data is entered on the schedule side – and not updated on the CMMS? Is it necessary to maintain work level calendars in two systems? What if the resource leveling algorithm in the scheduling tool doesn’t use the “order of fire” concept? Where do you run weekly schedule compliance?

Where do you stand? How does your company compare to the general CMMS user community?

Table I is based on some informal surveys in the field. Looking at these numbers, it would appear that very few sites are generating a resource-leveled weekly schedule.

The reason for this low adoption rate is simple. Most software vendors don’t make the development of resource-leveling software a priority. Likewise, because a useable tool has been unavailable, users have not learned the value of this process.

What now? Companies have learned that with a readilyavailable CMMS “add-in” and adjustments in a few crucial processes, they can gain substantial economic efficiencies. A surprising, but very significant bonus is that their respective companies soon become far better places to work. Shared goals built on inter-departmental cooperation have quickly lowered conflict and increased job satisfaction.

If your organization is one of the estimated 53 companies world-wide that regularly generate a resource-leveled weekly report, be proud. If not, it’s probably time to evaluate how you can join this elite group.

Start by comparing your current practices with those discussed in this article. If you believe you have opportunities for improvement, take action. Change what you can with your current skills and tools, then ask for any necessary outside support to help you make it all the way. MT

John Reeve has spent the past 18 years helping clients solve real-world CMMS problems. As a senior consultant for Synterprise Global Consulting, he deals with “once in a lifetime” issues several times each year. He can be reached at

Additional Concepts & Definitions

A. Weekly schedules do not assign worker names to work orders. That is done with the daily schedule. The weekly schedule primarily states “this is the set of work which maintenance needs to work on this coming week.”

B. Weekly schedule compliance is a best practice–and should also be a KPI (>80%)

  • There needs to be a separate table, other than the work order table, in which to store these records by scheduled week.
  • This table also allows for “reason codes” as to why the work was not started.

C. PM work

  • The CMMS product automatically generates these records as PM work orders.
  • They have a work type of “PM,” a status of “ready” and a target start date. If this target date falls within the upcoming weekly schedule range, it will be scheduled.
  • Some sites may have a dedicated PM crew.
  • The processing order (“order of fire”) for the resource-leveling program involving PM work would be selected by the client.

D. “Order of fire”

  • This is a unique concept that defines the order of backlog processing. A primitive answer would be to simply “take the highest priority.” The “order of fire” concept directs the planner/scheduler to develop statements that control the exact order of evaluation.
  • Examples:
    • i. Emergency maintenance or “fix-itnow” (FIN) work-types
    • ii. “Carry-over work”
    • iii. PM work with dates in range
    • iv. Scheduled modifications that require internal maintenance resources
    • v. All other maintenance work, ranked by calculated priority in descending order and by report date

E. Opportunistic scheduling as a best practice

  • When reviewing a job on the weekly schedule, it is proper to also consider including related work, especially if the work is at a remote location.
  • The weekly schedule meeting should allow for this process to work quickly and efficiently. An effective technique is for the planner/scheduler to project the computergenerated report on a screen. While reviewing a work order record, the planner should then hyperlink to that work location (or asset field) and bring up other related work. The attendees would then say, for example, “select the first and third records and add them to the schedule.” By working as a team the group can very quickly make decisions that will be honored by everyone involved in making them

F. Major maintenance; modifications; capital work; project work

  • Work can come from the long-term plan (LTP). Typically, an external group meets periodically to review the entire LTP. They make decisions on budgets, priority, system availability, shutdown requirements, contractor support and long-lead material items.
  • Complications also can come from:
    • i. Jobs that cannot be done until a particular season
    • ii. Long-lead time material requirements
    • iii. Contractors may not be readily available.
    • iv. Planned operational downtime
  • Multi-craft coordination, where the major maintenance team might say, “the following work is now ready for the weekly schedule.” This should lead to the development of a work order in the CMMS product with the proper work type (i.e. CP) and giving it a scheduled start date. If this start date falls within the upcoming weekly schedule range, it will be processed.
  • Major maintenance may or may not consume on-site labor resources, but it is still beneficial to include this work in the weekly schedule. Adding this information gives improved visibility to all departments and reduces work coordination errors such as tearing up the parking lot twice in the same month.

G. In-progress work (sometimes called carry-over work) considerations

  • Once a job is started, it makes sense to allow that work to be continued, even if it crosses over onto multiple weeks.
  • Any work left unfinished at end of the week must be changed to “in progress” in the CMMS with these notations:
    • i. Remaining man-hours by craft
    • ii. Is the status changed to “hold” or is the unfinished work “available” for the following week?

H. The importance of planners–and job planning

  • Creating a weekly schedule is quite difficult without a planned backlog.
  • Maintenance work should be preplanned to the extent necessary to minimize delays in work performance. Pre-planning doesn’t just minimize downtime, it also optimizes labor efficiency and job safety.
  • Planners provide:
    • i. Consistency of input with regard to craft
      estimates, priority assignment, work-type
      assignment, and proper asset identification.
    • ii. Interpretation of each work request by using clear and obvious wording and a sufficient amount of detail.
    • iii. Links to work associated with future system shutdowns
    • iv. A proactive view of future work, not just short-term reactive maintenance.
    • v. An important service by identifying recurring repair problems and informing engineering.

I. Shutdown/turnaround scheduling typically requires a robust scheduling product. It involves the use of logic ties, critical path and resource analysis. Conversely, weekly scheduling is mostly a collection of work activities with no inter-dependencies.

Prioritization Issues

1. How can you determine if your system of prioritization is NOT working?

  • You are making use of “deadline” priorities. This means you are linking the “allowed time to repair” to a priority value. This approach does not take into account the available resources for any given day or week. There will be violations because you only have so many resources to get the work done.
  • You review your backlog of work and find “high priority” work that is many months old.
  • You review your backlog of work and find that the majority of all work has the same priority.

2. What constitutes a good system of prioritization?

  • Backlog work priorities are periodically reviewed and adjusted, as needed.
  • The work order priority is combined with the asset/location priority. This technique provides a normalized result and is ideal for ranking the work.
  • The higher the number, the higher the priority. With this approach, there are no limits on processing new work (which is now more important than the existing work in the backlog).

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3:09 am
March 2, 2006
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Tracking KPIs Accross Multiple Plants And Business Units

This wraps up a two part article based on a presentation at the 2005 SMRP Conference, in St. Louis, MO.

USG began its implementation of asset care and work management best practices in 2001. The goal of the project, which came to be known as the Reliability Performance Model and the RPM Initiative, was to develop a world-class asset management program utilizing recognized best practices that focused on the areas of equipment reliability and maintenance productivity to improve plant operating efficiencies.

An important part of the project was the early development of 26 Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and expectations to provide information on where the project worked well and where it didn’t. Today, these KPI are still helping the corporation build on its successes and leading it to making process changes where unfavorable trends are emerging. Thus, the RPM Initiative continues to strongly influence the way asset care, maintenance and reliability are managed at USG’s manufacturing facilities.

Part I of this article, published in the February 2006 issue of MAINTENANCE TECHNOLOGY, focused on the first 13 of these KPIs that included:

1. Monthly Maintenance Spending (by dollar)
2. Monthly Maintenance Spending (by %)
3. Monthly Work Mix by Priority
4. Monthly Work Mix by Type (hours)
5. Monthly Work Mix by Type Summary (%)
6. Monthly Work Mix by Expense Class
7. Completed Work Orders per Man Day
8. Priority 1 Equipment Closed Emergency Work Orders
9. Equipment Other than Priority 1 with 4 or More Closed Emergency Work Orders
10. Equipment with Costs Greater than $1,000
11. Failure Codes
12. Job Delays
13. PPM and SAR Completion Times

In this concluding installment, the focus is on the remaining 13 of the 26 KPIs and some of the results that USG has achieved since it began utilizing these metrics. The article picks up here with KPI #14.

Part II

14. Percent of Labor Hours Charged to Standing Work Orders
Standing work orders (SWOs) are used to capture labor hours and minor materials costs for work that is typically not associated with a specific piece of equipment. In some cases that involve specific equipment, a SWO may be used if the time and cost associated with the work is insignificant and if there is no need to capture maintenance history for the equipment.

At USG,SWOs are used to to cover non-specific routine work, such as housekeeping, quick adjustments, safety meetings, etc., as well as small jobs that take no longer than 30 minutes and cost no more than $200 to complete.

By definition, a SWO does not provide any detail or work history and is simply used to cover maintenance labor costs. It’s just a record of time spent working on a small job.

KPI #14 provides the past year’s monthly use of SWOs as a percent of the total hours charged to work orders during the month.

A high percentage (> 5%) of SWOs is not a desirable situation and may indicate that the work order system is not being utilized effectively. If this occurs, the situation is evaluated so that specific work orders are generated to develop accurate equipment histories. Think of SWOs as lost-equipment history.

In addition, work done under a SWO is not scheduled.Consequently, the high use of SWOs negatively impacts weekly schedule compliance. This is yet another reason to minimize the use of SWOs. Benchmark: SWO < 5%.

15. Age of Completed Work Orders
KPI #15 calculates the age of completed work orders as the time the Work Order was requested until the time it was completed. Three groups are defined: less than one week, between eight and 14 days, and greater than two weeks.

This is a leading KPI to show how well the job planning function is taking place. It is good to see the majority of completed work to have aged over two weeks since requested and before being completed so that the planner has time to plan the work. Jobs completed in less than one week of being requested indicate that there is no planning occurring for these jobs.

Benchmark: < 15% of the work orders are completed within one week of being requested.

16. Man Days of Work in the Open Work Order Backlog – Excluding HOLD
As another leading indicator,KPI #16 provides information on the size of the backlog at the end of the month.

Benchmark: 3-5 crew weeks of schedulable work in the backlog.

Too large of a backlog may indicate that additional help is needed to get work done or that the backlog is not being well managed.Too small of a backlog may indicate that not enough meaningful work is being identified or that the crew size is too big for the required work load.

Each USG plant conducts a monthly backlog review to ensure that its backlog is managed.Aged work-order reports are used to look at the less-than-30-day-old, 30- to-90-day-old and over 90- day-old work orders.

Benchmark: Plants target keeping their over-90-day-old work orders at less than 5% of the total estimated hours in the backlog.

17.Man Days ofWork in the Open Work Order Backlog – ON HOLD
KPI #17 indicates how much work is on hold at the end of the month. A large amount of work on hold should prompt an investigation into why (e.g. need design help, purchasing issues, etc.).

Benchmark: There is no exact benchmark for this indicator. Instead, an ON HOLD report is reviewed monthly to make sure work does not sit in the backlog too long for reasons that can be corrected (slow design, poor deliveries, etc.). This review is another part of a plant’s monthly backlog review.

assetmanagement_img318. Monthly Work Order Totals – Work Orders with Feedback
KPI #18 provides the number of completed work orders and the number of work orders completed, but returned without minimum feedback by month for prior 12 months. USG requires that craftspeople provide feedback after completing all jobs. At a minimum, a reason for failure code (RFO) and a delay code are required. KPI #17 is a good auditing tool to make sure that the organization is getting minimum feedback. The challenge is to use the feedback information to make improvements.

Benchmark: Zero (0) work orders submitted without feedback.

19. Total Manpower Utilization
USG requires that the crafts are scheduled for 100% of their time. KPI #18 provides a rolling 12-month trend of the percent of the craftspeople’s time that is actually scheduled.

The purpose of this KPI is to show if the crafts are being fully scheduled, i.e. 100% of available hours charged to work orders.

Benchmark: 100% of craftspeople’s available time is scheduled and charged to a work order.

20.Mechanical Manpower Utilization, Available Hours vs. Hour Charged by Priority
KPI #20 provides the same information as provided in KPI #19, but looks only at the mechanical hours, breaking them out into what work is being done, based on the work order priority.Again, reactive work (emergency, urgent work and break-in work; i.e. priorities 1, 2 and 5) should be minimized.

21. Electrical Manpower Utilization, Available Hours vs. Hours Charged by Priority
Same as KPI #20 above, except KPI #21 covers electrical hours.

22. Work Order Hours Estimated vs. Actual – Mechanical
KPI #22 compares work order estimated hours to actual hours charged by month for the past 12 months for the mechanical craftspeople.

KPI #22 is used to measure how well USG is planning and estimating jobs (over- or under-estimating) or ifjob delays are negatively affecting job completion times (under-estimating) for the mechanical craftspeople.

Benchmark: Estimating accuracy should be within ±10% of the actual hours charged.

23.Work Order Hours Estimated vs. Actual – Electrical
Same as KPI #22 above, except KPI #23 covers electrical hours estimated versus actual.

Benchmark: Estimating accuracy should be within ±10% of the actual hours charged.

24. Weekly Schedule Compliance
KPI #24 calculates the weekly schedule compliance for each week in the month. Schedule compliance is calculated as the percent of all scheduled work orders completed during the week, i.e. number of work orders scheduled and completed divided by the total number of all scheduled work orders * 100%. The cutoff date for the next week’s schedule is the Friday of the prior week.

Benchmark: > 90% weekly schedule compliance.

25. Mechanical Schedule Utilization KPI #25 provides a rolling 12-month
trend of the amount of mechanical work that is proactive (priorities 3, 4 and 6) versus reactive (priorities 1, 2 and 5).

Benchmark: < 10% reactive (priorities 1, 2 and 5).

26. Electrical Schedule Utilization
Same as KPI #25 above, except KPI# 26 covers electrical work

Benchmark: < 10% reactive (priorities 1, 2 and 5).

Managing the process
The adage that if you don’t measure it, you can’t manage it is central to the effective use of USG’s KPIs.However, the corporation is being careful not to just manage the numbers, but focus on managing the process to improve asset care–and, consequently, improve the KPIs. Fig. 1, illustrating the Reliability Performance Model and Metrics, shows how the work management process and KPIs are interconnected.

At a minimum, all plants review their KPIs on a monthly basis and select two or three on which to concentrate. Examples of the effective use of the Reliability Performance Model and the work management process to improve plant performance are:

Initiative 1. . .
In an effort to address the high number of emergency and break-in work, Plant 1 reviews all reactive work orders weekly to ensure the validity and necessity of each.

A small plant team of operating and maintenance personnel communicate the results of the weekly analysis plant-wide to make sure that all employees understand the effect that reactive work has on maintenance productivity and scheduling.

As a result of this team’s focus, its communication effort and the plant-wide understanding of the effect that reactive work has on maintenance productivity, reactive work has been reduced from 20% to less than 15% since the beginning of the plant’s RPM implementation in 2004.

Initiative 2. . .
Plant 2 also is dealing with the issue of a high amount of reactive work. Knowing that proactive asset care is grounded in prevention, Plant 2 is focusing on developing good preventive work to address its high rate of equipment failures.

Each maintenance supervisor and planner has been charged with the objective to develop one PPM task per week, with attention given to the most critical equipment first.

Although it is still early in the implementation of Initiative 2, reactive work at Plant 2 has been reduced by 40% since this initiative was started.

Initiative 3. . .
Plant 3 employs USG’s PPM optimization process on every equipment failure that shuts down the production line.

Plant 3 is the only plant running near the 40% PPM target and has one of the highest FROMPM rates in the company. Its focus on prevention has enabled the plant to reduce total delay by 33% and increase plant output by 8%.

Initiative 4. . .
Plant 4 developed an operator inspection program to improve the planning horizon by driving the age of completed work orders up so that less than 15% of the work is completed within one week of being requested. Just as importantly, this inspection program also has helped to drive down reactive work that was trending below 15% by the end of the 2nd quarter 2005.

Typically, operators tend not to report problems until defects are to the point that production is impacted (line shuts down or off-quality product is produced). If the defects are minor and do not affect production, then the operators tend to just “live with it.”

At Plant 4, a team of production, electrical and mechanical employees develop operator inspection lists to help identify defects before the defects shut the machine down or cause offquality product. Rather than live with a problem, operators now report minor defects that, in the past, had grown into bigger problems.

Since beginning to use the operator inspection program, the amount of work completed within less than a week has dropped by 33%. This should improve the planning horizon and permit better planning.

Problems are found early so that the repairs can be planned and scheduled.

Initiative 5. . .
Plant 5 also uses an operator/ maintenance team approach to reduce reactive work.

The team keeps in close contact with the production department to ensure that the scheduling time is adequate to complete the work, and with the planners to be sure that job plans and parts are available.

In addition, the urgency of each job is accurately communicated during the approval process.

As a result of this team’s focus, reactive work is down to less than 10%; schedule compliance is greater than 90%; only 7% of the work orders are requested and completed in less than one week; there is a low use of standing work orders.

In addition,PPMs are trending in a positive direction.

Initiative 6. . .
Plant 6 saw an increase in its trouble calls covered under standing work orders and wanted to address this issue due to the loss-of-work history. The plant monitored its use of the standing work order for trouble calls and found that the number of calls could be more effectively handled using discrete work orders.

Based on this analysis, Plant 6 chose to do away with all standing work orders and now schedules all work using discrete work orders. Trouble calls are handled using emergency or urgent work orders.

Schedule compliance remains near 90%. Furthermore, the amount of reactive work remains below the company average of 20% and the good work history has improved the plant’s reliability program.

Quarterly KPI review
One additional tool that is used to focus attention on the monthly KPIs and work management process improvements is the company wide publication of quarterly KPI results. This communication is supplied to all manufacturing plants, and just as importantly, to their respective vice presidents of manufacturing through USG’s intranet website.

The quarterly KPI review provides the current quarter results, historic quarterly results and average results by company and implementation phase This communication ensures the added attention of corporate management and instills a competitive atmosphere into the program to help promote plant compliance and process improvement initiatives.

Future challenge – RPM scorecard
Once the RPM Initiative became a companywide program, the RPM Corporate Steering Committee was formed to oversee and monitor the program.

The committee is made up of senior management from manufacturing, finance, IT and purchasing. It meets quarterly to review the initiative’s progress and manage it from a strategic level.

Although the monthly KPIs are aimed at addressing work management program compliance and process improvement on the plant floor, the Corporate Steering Committee routinely asks how well the initiative is going (e.g. are goals being achieved; is money being saved?)

Even though the steering committee understands that the initiative is a long- term improvement program (three to five years) focused on optimizing plant capacity, senior management also needs to see progress and savings–even in the short-term.

While the plant KPIs are tracking local plant compliance in a variety of areas, the RPM Steering Committee has asked to see the overall performance of the initiative across the enterprise, on a plant-by-plant basis.

Members have asked to see a single number that is representative of a plant’s overall performance and compliance. They have asked that a report be developed for each plant that addresses the following two strategic areas:

1. Plant Performance
a. Total maintenance costs
b. Plant productivity
c. Plant efficiency
d. Product cost
2. Program Compliance
a.Work management
b. Reliability
c. Operation of the central storeroom

RPM scorecard – in development
While the final RPM Scorecard that USG is developing may look different, these four areas will be scored:

1. Plant Performance – Cost and Delay
a. Total plant maintenance spending
b.Gross production/net hour (measure of speed)
c.Net production/gross hour (measure of waste, delay, operating efficiency )
d.Maintenance cost/net production
e.Mechanical and electrical delay
2. Work Management Component
a. % Reactive work
b. % Manpower utilization
c. % Standing work orders
d. Age of completed work orders (% < 1 week)
e.Weekly schedule compliance
3. Reliability Component
a. % PPMs
b. % FROM PMs
c. % PPMs not completed
d. Documented reliability savings
4. Storeroom component
a. % Storeroom built
b. % Part relocated
c. % Storeroom items live
d. Inventory accuracy

assetmanagement_img4Scoring of the plant performance portion of the scorecard will compare current year cumulative financial and production results against the base year results. The base year has been specified as the last full year prior to the RPM implementation; it will be used as the plant performance standard in all future scorecard reporting.

Scoring of the work management, reliability and storeroom components will compare current year cumulative KPI results against the targets established in Table I.

Scores for each of the areas will be calculated and then transferred to the plant-specific scorecard. Scores over 100% indicate that the goal is being exceeded. Scores of 100% indicate that the goal is being met. Scores under 100% indicate that the goal is not being met.

The total score will be developed from the four individual area subtotals. The plant performance will be weighted at 40% to reflect its strategic importance, and the other three areas will be weighted at 20% in calculating the total score.

The scorecard will be color-coded for emphasis. Green indicates achieving or exceeding objective (> 85% of goal); yellow indicates progress is being made (75% to 85% of goal); and red indicates an area that is not achieving the goal (< 75% of goal). By color-coding plant results, the scorecard will become an easily-read visual reference of how well a plant is performing.

The RPM scorecard will combine the above elements of plant performance and program compliance into a single easily read format. An example is shown as Table II.

The RPM scorecard will provide the total score as the single number that can be used to indicate how well a plant is doing and enable USG management to compare plants against one another (rack and stack based on the total score).

assetmanagement_img5By racking and stacking plants based on RPM performance, those that are falling behind will be able to elicit the help of more successful sites. Similarly, USG management also will be able to identify the company leaders and use these plants to promote the initiative, celebrate successes and provide personnel to help the lowerperforming plants. The RPM scorecard will become another tool for continuous improvement.

USG’s Reliability Performance Model and RPM Initiative continues to be successful at the 35 plants where it is currently deployed. Based on this success, company-wide implementation of the RPM Model will continue. By 2008, all 56 of USG’s manufacturing facilities will have implemented these work management best practices.

The goal of the RPM Initiative is to develop a world-class enterprisewide asset care program utilizing recognized best practices to focus on the areas of equipment reliability, and maintenance productivity to improve plant operating efficiencies. The overall strategy of the initiative is to set up a strong,well-trained operator/maintenance team organized around the planning functions to provide better utilization and improve the efficiency of the plant’s assets.

The development of standard company- wide KPIs to help plants identify areas that are working well and address areas the need attention has contributed significantly to the success of the RPM Initiative. But, the focus is on managing the process–not managing numbers–to improve asset care.

Continued and regular plant-level reviews and company-wide comparisons of these metrics and an RPM scorecard to report overall progress to upper management are the means by which tracking of KPIs across multiple plants and business units have become such an effective tool in improvements within USG. MT

Jay Padesky is Technical Manager Manufacturing Reliability and Maintenance for the US Gypsum Co. He is a Registered Professional Engineer (Michigan) and a Certified Maintenance and Reliability Professional (CMRP) with over 25 years of experience in various engineering and management positions. Since 2002, he has headed up USG’s RPM Initiative, which is instituting work management, material management and reliability best practices at all 56 USG North American manufacturing locations. Padesky is active in the Society of Maintenance and Reliability Professionals (SMRP), where he is a member of the association’s Best Practices Committee. Padesky holds a Bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Michigan. Dick DeFazio is the president and CEO of Performance Consulting Associates, Inc. (PCA, Inc.), an asset management consulting and engineering firm headquartered in Atlanta, GA, since 1976. He is a Board Certified Management Consultant (CMC) with over 25 years of experience in both the public and private sectors.DeFazio and his team specialize in helping corporations implement Best Practices and World Class Reliability strategies in order to adapt to rapid changes in market trends and technology.

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