Controlling the demands of equipment and maintenance purchasing

There is no “one size fits all” purchasing process for maintenance organizations—and for good reason. How your team may conduct supplier relations and what spare parts are purchased may well assist in contributing to your company’s competitive advantage.

05/16/2016



There is no “one size fits all” purchasing process for maintenance organizations—and for good reason. How your team may conduct supplier relations and what spare parts are purchased may well assist in contributing to your company’s competitive advantage. Courtesy: Smartware GroupThere is no "one size fits all" purchasing process for maintenance organizations-and for good reason. How your team may conduct supplier relations and what spare parts are purchased may well assist in contributing to your company's competitive advantage. For this reason, and others, the purchasing function is an important one for maintenance professionals. According to FacilitiesNet, this is one of the main responsibilities that maintenance managers grapple with.

"Ample spare parts, rapid purchase-order processing, critical spare parts determination, standardization of suppliers, high-quality parts, consignment of high-use items and rapid checkout of parts," noted Mike Cowley, president of CE Maintenance Solutions. "These are among the most common demands maintenance and engineering managers make on their departments."

A modern computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) is typically well-equipped with a configurable equipment and maintenance purchasing function to help optimize your purchasing and inventory-management processes—whatever that may entail in your organization. In Bigfoot CMMS, the purchasing function covers a variety of areas: work-management controls, purchase-order status and approvals, line-item controls and supplier management. Let's review each section in detail to show how you can improve wrench time, reduce administrative time and save money.

Work-management controls

Streamlining your workflow and inventory-level requirements starts with the parts usage feature available in the Bigfoot CMMS work order function. This feature allows you to control how and when you want to make parts available.

Purchase-order status and approvals

To tackle your unique purchasing cycle, leverage advanced workflows to replicate your existing business processes or even design new workflows to remove existing constraints. With advanced workflows, you can set conditions for approval and user notifications as well as layout how your transactions will be handled throughout each sequence of a purchase order.

To provide significant flexibility, configuration is intertwined throughout the system. Many user-defined fields are made available in all submenu and configuration areas that support each function respectively, including inventory management and purchasing. With so many variables in today's business environment, Bigfoot CMMS provides a means for you to design and manage your own fields to track what is important to you.

Line-item controls

Next up, gain definitive control of line-item details when it comes to processing needs. Each item can be split by a quantity amount, which may need to be addressed by your distinct business processes.

Supplier management

Let's face it, relationships and performance is everything when it comes to establishing confidence in your supply chain.

- This article originally appeared on Smartware Group's blog. Smartware Group is a CFE Media content partner. Edited by Erin Dunne, production coordinator, CFE Media, edunne@cfemedia.com



Top Plant
The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America.
Product of the Year
The Product of the Year program recognizes products newly released in the manufacturing industries.
System Integrator of the Year
Each year, a panel of Control Engineering and Plant Engineering editors and industry expert judges select the System Integrator of the Year Award winners in three categories.
July/Aug
GAMS preview, 2018 Mid-Year Report, EAM and Safety
June 2018
2018 Lubrication Guide, Motor and maintenance management, Control system migration
May 2018
Electrical standards, robots and Lean manufacturing, and how an aluminum packaging plant is helping community growth.
April 2018
2017 Product of the Year winners, retrofitting a press, IMTS and Hannover Messe preview, natural refrigerants, testing steam traps
August 2018
SCADA standardization, capital expenditures, data-driven drilling and execution
June 2018
Machine learning, produced water benefits, programming cavity pumps
April 2018
ROVs, rigs, and the real time; wellsite valve manifolds; AI on a chip; analytics use for pipelines
Spring 2018
Burners for heat-treating furnaces, CHP, dryers, gas humidification, and more
August 2018
Choosing an automation controller, Lean manufacturing
February 2018
Setting internal automation standards

Annual Salary Survey

After two years of economic concerns, manufacturing leaders once again have homed in on the single biggest issue facing their operations:

It's the workers—or more specifically, the lack of workers.

The 2017 Plant Engineering Salary Survey looks at not just what plant managers make, but what they think. As they look across their plants today, plant managers say they don’t have the operational depth to take on the new technologies and new challenges of global manufacturing.

Read more: 2017 Salary Survey

The Maintenance and Reliability Coach's blog
Maintenance and reliability tips and best practices from the maintenance and reliability coaches at Allied Reliability Group.
One Voice for Manufacturing
The One Voice for Manufacturing blog reports on federal public policy issues impacting the manufacturing sector. One Voice is a joint effort by the National Tooling and Machining...
The Maintenance and Reliability Professionals Blog
The Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals an organization devoted...
Machine Safety
Join this ongoing discussion of machine guarding topics, including solutions assessments, regulatory compliance, gap analysis...
Research Analyst Blog
IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., is a leading independent supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry.
Marshall on Maintenance
Maintenance is not optional in manufacturing. It’s a profit center, driving productivity and uptime while reducing overall repair costs.
Lachance on CMMS
The Lachance on CMMS blog is about current maintenance topics. Blogger Paul Lachance is president and chief technology officer for Smartware Group.
Material Handling
This digital report explains how everything from conveyors and robots to automatic picking systems and digital orders have evolved to keep pace with the speed of change in the supply chain.
Electrical Safety Update
This digital report explains how plant engineers need to take greater care when it comes to electrical safety incidents on the plant floor.
IIoT: Machines, Equipment, & Asset Management
Articles in this digital report highlight technologies that enable Industrial Internet of Things, IIoT-related products and strategies.
Randy Steele
Maintenance Manager; California Oils Corp.
Matthew J. Woo, PE, RCDD, LEED AP BD+C
Associate, Electrical Engineering; Wood Harbinger
Randy Oliver
Control Systems Engineer; Robert Bosch Corp.
Data Centers: Impacts of Climate and Cooling Technology
This course focuses on climate analysis, appropriateness of cooling system selection, and combining cooling systems.
Safety First: Arc Flash 101
This course will help identify and reveal electrical hazards and identify the solutions to implementing and maintaining a safe work environment.
Critical Power: Hospital Electrical Systems
This course explains how maintaining power and communication systems through emergency power-generation systems is critical.
click me