In maintenance we are often looking for a single solution to a very complicated problem. We hope that by implementing better technology, newer equipment, or newer improvement processes we can solve our maintenance issues. On a positive note, more often that not we can probably save our money on the above equipment, technology and processes; however, there is no easy fix. We frequently find that the most complicated problems arise from small, unobserved sources; these are the very elements that we tend to pay too little attention to because they are small or viewed as too basic.
Let's use lubrication as an example. Many organizations do not invest enough thought, skill, process, training, or execution follow-up into the basics of lubrication. If you have ever tried to define how much grease to apply to one bearing grease fitting, you quickly gain an understanding of how unclear the fundamentals can be in a plant. Worse yet, if we fail to define the basics, we risk high variation and lack of standardization in the process.