Fleet Maintenance - 54

MANAGEMENT

The "shop
improvement"
conundrum
How can fleets measure
productivity enhancements and
time saved if it doesn't directly
impact the bottom line?

You believe in continuous improvement,
don't you? Of course you do. Since the 1970s
when the first Japanese vehicles came to the
U.S. and Toyota Production System (TPS)
management techniques became known,
manufacturers worldwide learned you must
work on continual improvement to become
a low-cost producer. The alternative tonguein-cheek approach was famously offered by
quality guru and management consultant
W. Edwards Deming: "It is not necessary to
change. Survival is not mandatory."

By Joel Levitt

PRESIDENT, SPRINGFIELD RESOURCES
Springfield Resources (maintenancetraining.com) is a
management consulting firm that services a variety of
clients on a wide range of maintenance issues. Levitt is
the president of the company and has trained more than
17,000 maintenance leaders from more than 3,000 organizations in 38 countries. He is also the creator of LaserFocused Training, a flexible training program that provides
specific, targeted training on your schedule, online to
1-250 people in maintenance management, asset management, and reliability.

54 Fleet Maintenance | July 2019

Let's say you decide to move into the
modern age (about 1970) and buy some pneumatic impact wrenches. These will certainly save time and help techs do a better job,
especially if you do a lot of tire work. How
would you know if they are a good idea? And,
how good of an idea are they? The answer is:
it depends.
Some improvements that can potentially
pay well depend on what happens after the
improvement is implemented.
It depends on what the technician does with
that time. If he or she spends that saved time
shopping for cool new jeans and reading their
Twitter feed, then it wasn't a great idea. If they
do an extra work order or two a week, then it
was a very good idea. It is important to note
that no one is working harder or speeding up,
just wasting less time.

Is it worth it?

There are a couple of ways to figure out if
an idea is good. How good of an idea, again,
depends on how the work would have been
handled. If it was nothing special - no overtime
avoided - then the savings might be the true
wages of the technician (wage plus benefits). If
the work was pulled in from an outside shop,
then the savings is the outside shop rate.

Some improvements
that can potentially
pay well depend on
what happens after
the improvement
is implemented.

ยป In order for a shop to survive,
continous improvements must be made.
iStock

Most organizations chose an average rate
for all time saved. Explain the issue to your
company's financial team and encourage them
to choose a rate that fairly represents the value
of the time saved.
This savings is why UPS locates parts rooms
centrally. The central location saves steps.
Saved steps are saved time. It is also why
well-designed shops follow some common
rules with toolboxes at the head of the vehicle,
air lines at both ends, and bulk oil and antifreeze hoses at the head of the bay. These and
hundreds of other continuous improvements
have become a competitive advantage.

Direct versus indirect savings

Direct savings are savings that make it through
to the books of the company. For instance, if
you change a PM frequency that requires a
parts replacement from monthly to quarterly, the avoided parts (four sets rather than 12
sets) will show up on the books as a reduced
expense.
There are also indirect savings to consider.
If the PM takes an hour, then the fleet will save
eight hours a year. Where will eight hours a
year show up? These kinds of savings are more
of a challenge to calculate because the savings
will be very difficult, if not impossible, to see
in the company's books.
Since small savings of labor are not real,
should we still do those time-savings projects?
It turns out those indirect savings are also
important. Think of the UPS parts rooms being
a few steps closer to the bays. That setup means
more valuable work and less wasted effort.
Constant improvement in processes, products, or techniques is the key to a well-run fleet.
We pursue both kinds of savings. By being
vigilant about reducing the labor, parts, and
overhead of the maintenance operation, we are
contributing to the success of the enterprise.


http://www.maintenancetraining.com

Fleet Maintenance

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Fleet Maintenance

Uptime - How you can make the most out of your shop's ROs
Foundation for success: How do you find and keep technician talent?
Vehicles - Examining the e-systems available for today's fleets
In the Bay - Do techs understand the fundamentals of electrical system diagnosis?
Shop Operations - How to assess replacement parts
Reman, Rebuild, Replace - Reasons fleets should consider reman
Economic Outlook - Uncertainties with today's global economy
Tire Tactics - Factors to help determine the lifecycle of tires
Management - The "shop improvement" conundrum
Fleet Parts & Components
Tools & Equipment
Classifieds
Guest Editorial - Increase shop efficiencies through fluid management
Fleet Maintenance - 1
Fleet Maintenance - 2
Fleet Maintenance - 3
Fleet Maintenance - 4
Fleet Maintenance - 5
Fleet Maintenance - 6
Fleet Maintenance - 7
Fleet Maintenance - Uptime - How you can make the most out of your shop's ROs
Fleet Maintenance - 9
Fleet Maintenance - Foundation for success: How do you find and keep technician talent?
Fleet Maintenance - 11
Fleet Maintenance - 12
Fleet Maintenance - 13
Fleet Maintenance - 14
Fleet Maintenance - 15
Fleet Maintenance - 16
Fleet Maintenance - 17
Fleet Maintenance - Vehicles - Examining the e-systems available for today's fleets
Fleet Maintenance - 19
Fleet Maintenance - 20
Fleet Maintenance - 21
Fleet Maintenance - 22
Fleet Maintenance - 23
Fleet Maintenance - In the Bay - Do techs understand the fundamentals of electrical system diagnosis?
Fleet Maintenance - 25
Fleet Maintenance - 26
Fleet Maintenance - 27
Fleet Maintenance - 28
Fleet Maintenance - 29
Fleet Maintenance - Shop Operations - How to assess replacement parts
Fleet Maintenance - 31
Fleet Maintenance - 32
Fleet Maintenance - 33
Fleet Maintenance - 34
Fleet Maintenance - 35
Fleet Maintenance - Reman, Rebuild, Replace - Reasons fleets should consider reman
Fleet Maintenance - 37
Fleet Maintenance - Economic Outlook - Uncertainties with today's global economy
Fleet Maintenance - 39
Fleet Maintenance - Tire Tactics - Factors to help determine the lifecycle of tires
Fleet Maintenance - 41
Fleet Maintenance - 42
Fleet Maintenance - 43
Fleet Maintenance - 44
Fleet Maintenance - 45
Fleet Maintenance - 46
Fleet Maintenance - 47
Fleet Maintenance - 48
Fleet Maintenance - 49
Fleet Maintenance - 50
Fleet Maintenance - 51
Fleet Maintenance - 52
Fleet Maintenance - 53
Fleet Maintenance - Management - The "shop improvement" conundrum
Fleet Maintenance - Fleet Parts & Components
Fleet Maintenance - 56
Fleet Maintenance - 57
Fleet Maintenance - Tools & Equipment
Fleet Maintenance - 59
Fleet Maintenance - 60
Fleet Maintenance - Classifieds
Fleet Maintenance - Guest Editorial - Increase shop efficiencies through fluid management
Fleet Maintenance - 63
Fleet Maintenance - 64
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