Marshall Institute's Blog

Marshall Institute's Blog

Current Articles | RSS Feed RSS Feed

Advance the Foundation of YOUR Effective Storeroom

Effective and Efficient Processes and Practices

Last month we discussed the processes and practices that are necessary for a storeroom to be effective at a very ‘foundational’ level.  Those specific activities are important as they are the building blocks of a world class MRO inventory process.  From here, we build upon the groundwork just laid and grow to an intermediate level of effectiveness, while continuing to develop processes that lead us to higher performance.

Becoming 'YOUR BEST' Maintenance Supervisor

Tom Furnival

“A real leader or supervisor’s success is not solely measured on their personal ability, but is better measured by the success of the team they lead. This success is based both on the personal and professional growth of the team they lead.” R. Scott Smith.

Before your storeroom can be efficient, it must first be effective

describe the image

Welcome back!  This month, we are going to discuss the initial step of making your maintenance storeroom effective.  We are often contacted by clients who tend to share a common vision and goal, asking “Can you help us make our storeroom more efficient?”  “Of course we can, that’s what we do!”  It’s usually during this first contact with the client that we’ll caution, “First, let’s make sure your storeroom is effective.” 

Introduction to World Class Inventory Management

An Ideal Storeroom

Welcome and thanks for visiting! This is the first edition in a 12-month series of blog entries, designed to discuss and explain high level storeroom performance. It should also help create a compelling case for change at your plant or location.

Maintenance Planning & Scheduling Training: 3-steps to maximize your learning

Planning and Scheduling Training

In return for the ten minutes you will invest in reading this blog post, I promise that you will be able to make all future maintenance planning and scheduling training more meaningful and effective.  Sound like a great deal? 

Why do a Gemba Walk?

Gemba Walk

Many organizations struggle with the problem of constantly functioning in a reactive mode in dealing with process issues. Often, leaders are the last to hear of concerns and wonder how the problem escalated so far and
so fast before being consulted. One very good solution to this problem is a Gemba Walk.

Gemba is a Japanese word meaning “the real place”. In maintenance, we might call it “the workplace” or the place where value is added and the work of the business is done. A Gemba Walk is designed to encourage leaders to leave their day- to- day tasks and walk the workplace. This allows them to observe machinery conditions, ask about the practiced standards, gain knowledge about work status and build relationships with employees. It is a common sense, low cost approach to management. This affords management a reliable, simple, and easy means of supporting the organization and encourages workplace standardization. Employees’ sense of accomplishment and feelings of contribution increase when leadership is visible and takes interest in the concerns of their employees. Although a Gemba Walk is commonly implemented in a production environment, it can also be used wherever work is being done. A Gemba Walk is an excellent method of ensuring potential problems are addressed in the quickest possible time and at the lowest possible level.

SMRP 2014 Conference Review

2014 SMRP Conference

I had the privilege of attending the 2014 SMRP conference (Society of Maintenance and Reliability Professionals) in Orlando a few weeks ago. I always look forward to this annual conference. I enjoy spending time at the Marshall Institute Booth with co-workers. It’s always great catching up with colleagues whom I don’t see too often as we all travel so much. Marshall Institute typically works with 30+ clients at any given time. One of the things I love most about my job is that it never gets old. Each client has their own set of goals and opportunities. We help them identify these opportunities, put a strategic plan together as to how to address these opportunities and help them achieve success through training, consulting, and coaching.

There was a great turnout at SMRP this year. We had a lot of visitors at our Marshall Institute booth. In the 3 days we were in Orlando, we had lots of opportunity to speak with new prospective clients as well as current and former clients. It’s always great to hear from clients that we have worked with in the past and learn that they are still benefiting for our services. There were a good number of attendees whom have completed our Maintenance and Reliability Management (MRM) course through NC State University. MRM is a 3 week course that affords the attendee a diploma in Maintenance and Reliability Management from NCSU and an opportunity to take the CMRP test proctored by Marshall Institute. Many of our graduates are SMRP members and were in attendance at the Orlando conference.

The SMRP conference offered many presentations from some of the leaders in our industry. I attended several sessions and was impressed with both the quality of the speakers; most presentations were attended by 70 -100 enthused practitioners.

Greg Folts (President, Marshall Institute) and Chuck Jarrell (Powerhouse Leader, Campbell Soup Supply Company L.L.C.) presented on The Art of Good Leadership (article published by Plant Services). There were 80+people in attendance and they were all interested in the active question and answer session.

Get CMRP Exam Ready: 5 Tips to eliminate exam nerves

describe the image

Your accumulated experience in the field of maintenance reliability is, hands down, the best preparation you have for the CMRP Exam.  Study alone, without experience, is not enough to ensure a passing score.  Here are some ideas from maintenance reliability experts who took and passed the CMRP.

1. Try to Answer the Question, “How Ready Am I Really?

Assess your current understanding of exam concepts by reviewing the CMRP Exam Body of Knowledge and Certification Guidelines.  Take SMRP’s sample test ( to see how prepared you are.  From there, you can develop a list of gaps to better target your study.  

Process Safety Management Webinar

Greg Folts

On February 13th, 2014 Marshall Institute conducted a 1-hour free webinar on the topic of Process Safety Management (PSM).   The webinar, presented by senior consultant John Ross, covers the elements of PSM as it relates to both companies that handle highly hazardous chemicals and those who do not but would benefit from adopting some key practices and behaviors of PSM.   John emphasizes the importance of PSM as an organization-wide focus.  

How PSM-NEP applies to non-chemical plants

  It is recommend that you read John Ross' article  "Making Sense of Proces Safety" posted by Plant Engineering before reading this blog post. 

Process Safety Management, specifically the National Emphasis Program (PSM-NEP) might be terms and acronyms that don’t make any sense unless you are in a facility that works with or around highly hazardous chemicals (HHCs).  It would be a very big mistake to think that this OSHA initiative doesn’t apply to you.  Many of the activities that maintenance and engineering perform each day are applicable to PSM and Non-PSM plants.  The only real difference would be in the level and degree of documentation required.  Although it wouldn’t be a bad practice to document your activities as if you were under the watchful eyes of OSHA through a PSM program.

There is a significant chance that although your facility is not PSM mandated, you do follow some national or international quality initiative such as ISO or several of the other professional doctrines.  All of which require extensive and ‘auditable’ documentation.

All Posts

Subscribe by Email

Your email:

About Marshall Institute

Marshall Institute is an asset management consulting and training company dedicated to helping companies improve the maintenance contribution to their organizational performance. For over 35 years, Marshall Institute has provided world-class consulting and training services, led by experienced, knowledgeable consultants and training professionals producing tangible, measurable results for our clients.

Social Media


Browse by Tag