The value of work planning in maintenance
The way work is planned in an industry can vary widely. In some organizations it is a process driven by the culture of the facility. In others, it is a blend of culture and a formal system. In some companies, it is a strictly process-driven function. Some organizations do not feel the need to have a planning organization. Others have tried to implement planning, but they have not been successful for a variety of reasons and subsequently dissolved the planning organization.
Some organizations have maintenance planners in place and functioning within a planning model that is structured and controlled. In this environment, planners “plan their work and work their plan.” Their days are consumed with the fundamentals of producing planned “job packages,” and then working with maintenance and production to schedule the most appropriate date and time to implement those work packages. The planners in these organizations “own the backlog.” They keep the backlog clean through periodic scrubbing to eliminate duplicate work, work that has been accomplished and not reported as complete or work that is no longer desired to be done for one reason or another.
It is recommended that each facility undertake a critical examination of its planning organization, identify any shortfalls and take the steps necessary to realize the intrinsic value that sound maintenance planning can offer. A facility’s bottom line will be improved by this effort in the form of improved efficiency, better use of resources, and increased equipment availability and uptime.
Jim Davis, CMRP; Vice President of Business Development for Performance Consulting Associates