Total Process Reliability - TPM

3 Keys to Sustaining TPM / Total Process Reliability

One of the biggest challenges of a change initiative such as Total Productive Maintenance/Total Process Reliability (TPM/TPR) is being able to sustain the gains and improvements. Many companies have tried to implement TPM/TPR multiple times and failed; they achieve some quick wins and short-term improvements, but struggle to really change the culture.  We at Marshall Institute have found that there are several keys to sustaining gains and overall change that lead to long term implementations.  I'll cover 3 of those key elements today.

Total Process Reliability: Going Beyond TPM

What is Total Process Reliability—“TPR” ?

Total Process Reliability (TPR) is an organizational approach to improving operational reliability of major assets; in-turn improving overall equipment effectiveness (OEE), increasing production capacity, reducing costs and growing the effectiveness of the relationship between maintenance and operations. TPR combines the proven tools and techniques of Total Productive Maintenance (TPM) with an effective organizational change model to establish a vigorous and structured improvement process leading to operational excellence. 

True TPR is philosophy adopted and practiced across the organization; it is NOT just a maintenance initiative.

Total Productive Maintenance Implementation: The Importance of Communication

A crucial element to effective adoption and implementation of Total Productive Maintenance (TPM) is clear and honest communication. To support your TPM implementation effort consider one-on-one meetings with your maintenance crew to communicate the importance of TPM elements: operator care, planned maintenance...etc.  

By sitting one-on-one with your crew you can answer questions directly and discuss the importance of the initiative. Just as important as expressing the virtues of TPM is getting a feel for the level of maintenance support and having the opportunity to answer any questions that the crew may have. It will pay huge dividends to face issues upfront and convert possible skeptics into TPM supporters.



Keeping TPM active in your organization (Quick Tip)


Don’t let Total Productive Maintenance become a “flavor of the month”. Communication is key to keeping Total Productive Maintenance active in your organization. Consider promoting it using signs, banners, t-shirts, communication boards, pens, note pads, post-it notes etc. Get creative because you are now a part time marketer as well as a full-time Total Productive Maintenance champion. 

Bonus TPM Tip
Incorporate TPM cleaning and lubrication standards into your document control processes. This will ensure that you are in compliance with FAA, FDA, ISO, etc., guidelines as well as helping TPM become ingrained in your organization’s culture.

Cars as an example of Basic Equipment Care

When we consider the Total Productive Maintenance process, specifically operator care, it is often helpful to use the analogy of how we should maintain our vehicle.  Car MaintenanceThe operator of the vehicle has certain responsibilities that if neglected will result in lower performance and possible catastrophic loss.  Clearly the operator has the responsibility to maintain fluid levels (gas, oil...), proper tire pressure, cleanliness of the vehicle, and report any abnormal noises, warning lights, or performance.  The operator does not need to be a mechanic, but does need to take ownership to ensure the proper service is performed.

Basically, the cost of maintaining equipment is directly correlated to the experience, ownership, and knowledge of the operator.  If you wish to test this theory, hand your car keys to your 17 year old son!! When my son was 17, even with repeated warnings, he didn't learn not to follow the car in front of him so closely. He finally learned the lesson when I got to buy a shiny new hood and bumper for my car. 

Autonomous Maintenance: Make it Visual


Visual controls are a great way to promote autonomous maintenance practices - an essential element ofTotal Productive Maintenance (TPM).

If you haven't done this already consider marking site-windows and pressure gauges so that the optimum operating range is clearly defined. This should 

be done in a way so that even an untrained operator can easily identify the gauge and determine if it is operating within the optimal ranges.

Valves should be marked “normal open” or “normal closed” clearly identifying the position of the valves under normal operating conditions

5 Key Elements to Total Productive Maintenance (Video)

In this short video, Marshall Institute’s President, Greg Folts, talks about the 5 core elements of Total Productive Maintenance (TPM).

The 5 key elements are:

  1. Maintenance Excellence
  2. Basic Equipment Care
  3. Equipment Improvement
  4. Knowledge and Skills
  5. Equipment Design Excellence

If you have any TPM related experiences you would like to share please do so using the comment box below.

Productivity Improvement through Total Productive Maintenance

Productivity is the ratio of output over input. Outputs are the products or services a company produces, while inputs are those resources (energy, labor, equipment, materials) we use to create the outputs.

To improve that ratio, and productivity, you could keep the same level of inputs while increasing outputs or reduce inputs while keeping outputs the same. However, to optimize this ratio, you must increase output while reducing inputs. The opportunity is not to just do the right things, it is doing the right things right! That is productivity improvement.

To achieve optimal productivity requires improving the process of converting input to outputs.  Improve the efficiency and effectiveness of your systems and you will improve productivity.

TPM's Myth of Zero Unplanned Downtime

One of the goals of Total Productive Maintenance is to achieve zero unplanned downtime. While I understand the value of zero targets, in this case I think it serves to alienate some of the seasoned veterans that we desire to include in our reliability improvement efforts.  Our craftsmen intuitively know that preventing all failure is not possible, this disconnect between goal and reality aids the unfortunate leap to the philosophy that their job is simply to repair the failures quickly.  This problem is often compounded by rewarding reactive behaviors.  For example, when I worked in the trades, I quickly learned that the best troubleshooter and fastest repairman got the most recognition, praise, and overtime.

Basic Equipment Care Savings - Capture and Report

A  Basic Equipment Care Workshop (BEC) is a powerful event.  It can literally transform people’s behaviors and way of thinking – turning skeptics into believers.  BEC events usually consist of a cross-functional team whose goal is to improve the reliability of a specific piece of equipment. This is done by identifying and repairing defects, as well as designing and implementing improvements and countermeasures. In addition to reliability improvements, BEC events are great for establishing a “team-based” Teamworkculture and strengthening operator ownership.

Often just by having all of the equipment Operators, Engineers and Maintenance personnel working together in a team environment, defects that cause unscheduled breakdowns or minor stoppages are identified and repaired.  By eliminating possible causes for unscheduled breakdowns and minor stoppages there are monetary savings with improved equipment uptime, production output, product quality, SMED (Single Minute Exchange of Dies) improvements, and standardization of both operations and maintenance tasks.

How do I select a TPM Coordinator?

I am often asked this question by clients who are in the infancy of their TPM implementation.  While there is no cookie cutter pattern for a TPM Coordinator I do believe that there are some characteristics, skills, personality traits that can be very helpful to a successful TPM Coordinator.
I have worked with many companies, organizations, and people who have
 implemented some very good TPM processes over the past 10 years.  I have met many TPM Champions and TPM Coordinators who were essential to these successful implementations.  From my many acquaintances, I have identified a few traits and skills that, at the very least, tend to prove helpful for TPM Coordinators. These are my personal observations and are not derived from any kind of scientific data.

5 Total Productive Maintenance (TPM) Myths

TPM has been around industry for over 25 years, and yet is still an new concept to many organizations. There are many myths and misunderstandings about TPM that circulate industry.

Here are few myths and the correlating truths:

Myth #1 - TPM is all about operator based maintenance

WRONG. While a solid TPM process includes operator care of equipment, it is not the only element. We must combine solid maintenance practices, training development, equipment improvement, and equipment design excellence.  Operator care is critical, but alone will not result in significant reliability improvement.

Myth #2 - TPM can be driven by one passionate champion

While we need a champion, this passion must be developed into a coalition for change.  This is the only way to drive the deep roots required to weather the seasons of the business cycle. In addition we should develop floor level champions that own the process for a specific area of the plant. 

Myth #3 - Many Kaizen workshops strung together will result in sustainable change

Achieve Total Process Reliability Improvement

Columbia Forest Products

 In two weeks Greg Folts, president of Marshall Institute, is presenting a paper with a client of ours, Columbia Forest Products (CFP), Old Fort NC, at the 2010 Maintenance Reliability Technology Summit (MARTS) in Chicago, IL. The paper, also released as an article in Maintenance Technology’s March issue titled 'Total Process Reliability the ‘Columbia Way’, details the recent reliability improvements CFP has achieved. More than just presenting the successes, the article discusses what CFP did, the key factors for their success and the roadblocks they overcame.

For those who are not attending the conference and haven’t already read the article, we have summarized some key points for you here. First, let’s fast forward to the current day and we’ll work our way back to uncover the reasons for their success. 

A TPM webinar for all future gurus

The webinar covers key topics such as the evolution of TPM to Total Process Reliability (TPR) , how to create an effective structure to support successful TPM/TPR implementation, a proven TPM/TPR implementation model, 7 Steps to Basic Equipment Care, 9 steps to PM Optimization and more.
 Click on the image below to start the webinar.