World-Class Maintenance: Key Activities

In 2010 I flew 232,000 miles and circumvented the world several times to support clients achieve their reliability goals.  So far in 2011 I’ve worked in North Dakota, Florida, Oregon, Texas, Louisiana, Korea, Malaysia, and Scotland.   My point is not to promote my busy travel schedule but to shed light on some commonalities of mainte

nance, no matter the country or industry. 

I admit there are nuances that make certain operating environments different and sometimes unique, however I have listed some key maintenance activities that are required for any operation to become world-class. This by no means is an exhuastive list, just some key activities.

Planning & Scheduling

The activity of maintenance is a recurring event and therefore should be planned accordingly.  To plan & schedule effectively, Marshall Institute recommends that your Planner/Scheduler should be one of your best people.  In addition, we recommend you select the best people you have to write that job plan/task list, while receiving support from the best technician so we execute the job in the most efficient, effective, and safest way. In essence, your key processes require your best people.

Storeroom Control

We cannot expect to have a world class maintenance operation that isn’t supported by an equally qualified storeroom.  The storeroom operation is the nutrition required for any maintenance body.  Storeroom operations, fully implemented, and functional CMMS systems are the two primary concerns no matter where I travel in the world. Although, solutions may differ, the need is the same.


I touched on supplying your best people to key positions earlier. A key element to supporting your best people is training. Supervisors and leaders must receive formal training to be effective in leading and motivating others. Planner/Schedulers, craftspeople, technicians, engineers, operators must also receive skill-specific training to become subject matter experts. It amazes me how many organizations do not formally train their next generation.  Talk about the ultimate setting people up for failure?

Wherever you live, and whatever industry you work in, maintenance excellence is based on the same key activities. Focus on key systems like planning & scheduling and storeroom control, while developing the skills of your people. Excellence is achievable, and today is a great day to start!

(Below are some pictures from my travels in 2010 and 2011)


Add new comment

Please refrain from adding URLs to unrelated or commercial websites. This site is moderated and comments with inappropriate links are rejected. Thank you for your understanding.
This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
1 + 0 =
Solve this simple math problem and enter the result. E.g. for 1+3, enter 4.