Maintenance Improvement

Maintenance Improvement Fundamentals - Be the Change

There are some actions which must be taken at any plant if the maintenance contribution is to be improved. Indeed, some of the recommendations which follow should be implemented even in the absence of any corporate or top management directives! That is, they are well within the span of control and the organizational charter of the maintenance department as it currently exists, and ought to be pursued as a natural consequence of the responsibility and authority vested in the organization already.

There are at least six areas needing improvement that are fundamental to improved management and control of the maintenance function in general:

Managing Maintenance Resources Productively

Peter Drucker, "guru" of modern management, says that the task of a business, any business, is to make resources—labor, material, capital—productive. The work of management, he says, is to manage those resources through planning, organizing, integrating, measuring, and controlling activities appropriate to that purpose.

The most significant deficiency associated with the maintenance process at many plants is a "systemic" one: that is, there are insufficient administrative principles, practices, and procedures currently in place for adequate control of maintenance resources.

This is not usually a question of management competence, ability, or oversight, but simply a lack of management systems with which to do the job.

Maintenance improvement must start with good management processes.  Establishing at least the rudiments of good maintenance practices is the foundation of any improvement effort.