Maintenance Nuts & Bolts
January 2014


Happy New Year everyone. I hope 2014 is the best ever on all fronts!

The weather is just as unpredictable as some of our maintenance events. Never quite know what to expect even with the best of planning procedures and processes in place.

Hard to believe that NFMT 2014-Baltimore is just around the corner too! If you plan to attend I hope you will stop by our booth #1946 and say hello. Also, there is a 'stump the expert' session on Thursday afternoon that should be great fun and educational.  




Michael Cowley, CPMM 



February's Tip of the Month:  

Equipment History and its Importance

Tip of the Month:

How to Effectively Manage Your Inventory in Multiple Locations

As all of us know it is impossible to properly maintain and repair equipment without parts and supplies. But, for some reason, we continue to attempt managing plants and facilities with reduced spare parts, slower requisition processes, and purchasing departments who think we work for them. We all know we must have a working parts and supply system if we have any dreams of having a well-run maintenance organization so we can support our company's mission and goals. 


This month's topic seems simple but there are actually two parts to it to be effective. The first is: How do you manage inventory? and the second is: How do you manage inventory in multiple locations?  


Let's talk about the first one because it is the basis of how you will set-up any and all parts supply locations which are remote from your main supply room. The key to a successful parts and supply inventory is to have a work order system that communicates, or in the best of all worlds, is part of your maintenance management software. The bottom-line is the Purchase Order System and the Supply Requisition System should be connected to the work order so it will allow all purchases and supply room requests to be tagged back to the individual asset or piece of equipment.  


Having these systems communicating to each other is the only way to have reliable cost data which will enable you to understand the true cost of operating and maintaining your buildings and equipment.


Secondly, once you have a good system established for your main supply room, now you can apply some of the same basics to your multiple supply locations. The most important thing to remember is, you must know where your parts are and how many of each stocked part are waiting to be used.


To accomplish this you need an organized system that controls:

  • what is stocked,
  • what is used, and
  • what is received

The key to this is an organized system which monitors and controls the entire parts movement process. The best way to set-up this type of system for central supply systems and remote or satellite supply is to use RFID or bar-code systems so you know, without a doubt, what is coming in and what is going out of your storage locations.


Remember the key to this, as it is for most of the maintenance management programs, is to have an organized process with measurements in place which will allow you to hold these systems and processes accountable to the performance standards you have established.


Good luck, and remember you must know where every part is used and what asset or piece of equipment it is being used on.