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Maintenance Nuts & Bolts

February 2014
Michael Cowley
As we are all 'off and running' in 2014...I hope some of you will be attending NFMT Baltimore, March 4 - 6 at the convention center.

Yes, they have me presenting again and of course we have a booth at the expo.  In fact, come by our booth #1946, mention you get our newsletter and get a thank you gift. Also, you can talk to me about any maintenance concerns, get my advice, and of course, meet Anne Copeland who will also be there. 


Look forward to seeing you there!


See You Next Month,

Michael Cowley, CPMM

March's Tip of the Month: 

Communicating and Dispatching Work Requests...Are You Being Effective?   

Tip of the Month:  
Equipment History and its Importance 


All of us in the maintenance business, whether it is in manufacturing or in facilities, have computerized maintenance management systems (CMMS) and we use them for managing our work requests, calculating hours worked, and sometimes tabulating our parts and supplies costs. But very few organizations have detailed and comprehensive asset history as a part of their CMMS. The reason this happens...Work orders are not written for all work done each day and in many organizations work orders are written against a building or department and not to individual assets and equipment. Obviously the latter is the easy to way to account for a day's work. But it does not provide the detailed information needed to determine exactly how much labor, parts, and contractor costs are expended to your assets and equipment.


Keeping track of labor hours and parts and supplies is obviously important but you are missing out on one of the most valuable components of your expensive CMMS... the work and repair history of your critical and costly assets. Without the history you have no way of determining how much each asset or system is costing you each year to maintain. This information is critical when it is time to forecast your next year's capital budget or your budget for expense spending for major repair or maintenance. If you don't accurately know what you are spending you will have no idea of when it is time to change your normal course of action and business.


The other major reason to keeping track of our assets history is to determine which ones are 'eating your lunch' when it comes to the amount of labor, parts and supplies, and downtime. If you don't track your asset and equipment history you will not have any clues to what actions need to be taken to correct the problems. If you follow Pareto's rule, 20% of your equipment is using 80% of your maintenance costs and expenses. Without good equipment history you will not be able to see these extra costs through the fog of the day-to-day maintenance firefighting and emergencies.


So to resolve these issues you need the following:

  • A well-running CMMS
  • Work orders written for all work each day
  • Work charged to equipment not to buildings
  • In the facilities business each room is an asset
  • Repair parts and supplies are accounted for on each work order
  • Contractor costs are charged to assets and equipment
  • Completed work is audited to ensure accuracy
  • Scorecards in place to monitor costs on a monthly and yearly basis

In summary, write work orders for all your work and have it charged to assets. And, have a system in place to audit and communicate the data to all in the organization.


As you follow my tips please remember, if you have any questions or if I can be of assistance, please drop me an email (mike@cemaintenancesolutions.com) or give me a call 434.738.8484.



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