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Introducing: The ABCs of Advanced Maintenance


Lately, we’ve been looking at the central role CMMS solutions like ManagerPlus play in optimized maintenance programs like Reliability Centered Maintenance (RCM) and Condition Based Maintenance (CBM). In particular, we have focused on how CMMS functionality can be aligned with the objectives of these advanced forms of maintenance, and can thus serve as a platform for companies to take their maintenance operations to the next level.

So far we haven’t focused as much on why a company would choose to implement an optimized maintenance program in the first place, or provided specific steps on how to use CMMS to achieve these objectives.

That’s why we’re launching a new blog series: The ABCs of Advanced Maintenance. In this series, we will take a look at companies that are setting the standard for excellence in advanced maintenance methodologies, and provide some specific guidelines on how you can achieve similar results with CMMS.

For our first installment, we look at Ensco plc, a multinational oil and gas services company that generated $995,400 in revenue by implementing RCM. By utilizing the same highly organized approach they bring to safety, the company was able to achieve a 63% overall return on investment.

The assessment process

Ensco structured their RCM implementation around seven key questions (this list is adapted from the one found at drillingcontractor.org):

  1. What is the purpose of the system?
  2. How can the system break?
  3. Why do these breaks occur? (failure mode analysis)
  4. How does failure/downtime in this system impact other systems?
  5. What is the broad impact on the company as a whole?
  6. How can failure be prevented?
  7. What is the procedure if a failure does occur?

To find the best answers to these questions, Ensco drew on the expertise of machine operators, maintenance personnel, engineers, and OEM and reliability consultants. Based on their feedback, Ensco identified 72 action items and used them to revise 8 maintenance routines and create 15 new ones.

So how does CMMS fit into the mix? The maintenance history and the centralization of equipment data made possible by CMMS solutions make it much easier to consolidate and analyze the data needed to refine maintenance processes and introduce new ones.

For example, CMMS asset history is an essential resource when approaching questions 2, 3, and 6. Ultimately, experience is the best guide when it comes to failure mode analysis—common causes of failures may be the result of unique environmental factors or operational demands.

This is why there’s no substitute for good maintenance history. A quick look at your records will make it easy to spot trends and determine which parts are being replaced most often on a given piece of equipment. From there, a look at the notes left by the operator at the time of failure can help further narrow the range of possible causes.

Leading CMMS solutions also enable users to attach equipment manuals and other useful files and links directly to the equipment record. This information can help maintenance managers build new preventive checks and tasks based on manufacturer recommendations.

Once this analysis has been performed and processes have been designed accordingly, the next step is to disseminate these new and revised maintenance practices throughout the organization. This is where it becomes vital to have a centralized system for tracking maintenance data.

CMMS systems are designed to standardize these practices so that they are being followed by the entire organization, making it much easier to implement changes quickly and assess their impact over time.

Key takeaway: the success of advanced maintenance strategies like RCM is a function of strong historical data and centralized management. With these two factors in place, companies can achieve major reductions in downtime.

Be sure to check back here regularly for more insight into advanced maintenance practices and how to implement them with CMMS.

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