Efficient Plant December 2017 - 24

feature | voice from the field

MICHAEL'S TOP 5 TIPS FOR EFFECTIVE RELIABILITY

1

Plan for
everything,
including
failures.

Flint's team performs preventive
maintenance on all electrical-distribution
equipment on the Brown Univ. campus.

in deferred maintenance to just $7 million
total over the past four years."
"We are in the fifth year of the seven-year program to strengthen the preventive-maintenance program," Flint said.
"The formula was that we simply had too
much maintenance and not enough hours,
and this resulted in higher costs for things
like overtime or additional and emergency
contracted services. We also have equipment that is getting older and requires more
maintenance."
After the initial focus on the effective
application of fixed-schedule maintenance,
the goal became to develop a strategy
to help deliver a change in the maintenance-staff culture. The next step involved
applying predictive/condition technologies
that include vibration data collection and
analysis on all critical rotating equipment
and infrared monitoring of major electrical-distribution equipment. In addition,
runtime-based maintenance actions are
being initiated by the building-automation
system with the direct creation of the necessary maintenance work orders.

MEASURING RESULTS
One of the key performance indicators for
the program was measuring planned versus
reactive maintenance activities. When the
program began, the campus operated with

24

| EFFICIENTPLANTMAG.COM

2

Measure for
success-
correct to
improve.

3

Communicate,
communicate,
communicate.

only 25% planned maintenance. Five years
later, 68% of the maintenance is planned.
This was accomplished through a redirection effort that incorporated a variety of
Lean manufacturing techniques. Processes that were wasting critical man-hours
were identified, providing a clear path for
finding reasonable improvements. Some of
these improvements were identified prior
to Flint's arrival thanks to a broad team
of front-line staff, management staff, and
participants from some of the larger campus
departments.
Also, converting to a PM mindset was
crucial in the efforts, but this required a
steady change in the overall culture.
"We focused on making many small
changes rather than big ones," Flint said.
"Soon, change itself became part of the
culture and therefore made it easier to
implement the major changes. Change, in
general, has become something that is just
expected in our culture. Until someone
tells you that you have to begin to do things
differently, you can't understand the impact
this will have on you. We made sure that
all the changes didn't happen at once, but
they happened regularly-so the idea of
change was never a surprise."
For example, the team switched from using a desktop PC to using a mobile maintenance-work-order system. Each technician
now carries a tablet in his/her tool case and
documents all work history and spare-parts
needs remotely. This helps eliminate wasted
time that has been redirected into other PM

4

Review new
installations
for safe
maintainability.

5

Feedback from the
staff performing
all maintenance
activities is a must.

activities.

FINDING INSPIRATION
Flint relies on sage advice from Theodore
Roosevelt: "Far and away, the best prize that
life offers is the chance to work hard at work
worth doing."
"We have a serious goal of working
toward being a best-in-class facility team,"
Flint said. "In my work experience, I've been
involved with organizations that try to think
that way and often they compare themselves
with other companies to try to capture and
implement what is working for others. In
my opinion, this doesn't make you best in
class-it might make you almost as good in
class as the ones you're trying to duplicate.
So you really have to do more than that.
You have to think for yourselves along with
taking advice and using the best practices
that you see others doing."
And how do you know when you get
there?
"In my mind you never get there," Flint
said. "There should always be something
else that you can do better." EP

Michelle Segrest is president of Navigate
Content Inc., and has been a professional
journalist for 28 years. She specializes
in creating content for the industrial
processing industries. If you know of a
maintenance and/or reliability expert who
is making a difference at their facility,

DECEMBER 2017


http://www.EFFICIENTPLANTMAG.COM

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Efficient Plant December 2017

Efficient Plant December 2017 - 1
Efficient Plant December 2017 - Cover1
Efficient Plant December 2017 - Cover2
Efficient Plant December 2017 - 1
Efficient Plant December 2017 - 2
Efficient Plant December 2017 - 3
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