Unplanned Downtime

We help stabilise operations by systematically eliminating the repeat offenders.

Transforming reactive maintenance departments into proactive ones requires a structured approach focusing on short-term gains and long-term sustainability. While this approach will differ by site and needs, on most reactive sites it will make sense for one of the first initiatives to focus on eliminating the largest repeat failures.By tackling repeat offenders as a first step, you generate fast financial results and reduce production disruptions. This provides a morale boost to the maintenance team and frees employees to improve the business rather than fire fight, winning the necessary support to continue improving maintenance and initiate other important but slower changes.

An example of results delivered from our unplanned downtime reduction work:

Electrical motors. At a major site, hundreds of electrical motors of various sizes were employed. Although individually generally of small value, these motors’ unplanned downtime was identified by pareto analysis to represent the highest repair cost in the facility. We helped the client to tackle this issue as the top priority, while a parallel team worked on workflow and supply chain issues. To get a handle on the problem, an electrical motor audit was conducted. It identified:

  • Flawed repair/replace approach in terms of total cost of ownership. In some instances, pumps were repaired when the purchase of a brand new one would have been cheaper.
  • Poor load factors that reduced the expected life of motors from 40 years to five years.
  • Inappropriate mechanical setups that resulted in frequent shaft failures.
  • Overall lack of regard for OEM recommendations of preventive maintenance.

After completing the audit, the team ran Ideas Generation Sessions that devised a number of measures to significantly increase the availability of motors and reduce their total cost of ownership. These ideas were fed through the ideas pipeline to ensure their effective implementation.As a result, equipment maintenance was improved at all levels and repair costs reduced through improved management processes, such as competitively tendering repair work through technically pre-qualified repair facilities. Further actions reduced both motor wear and tear and power consumption.The total cost reduction was more than $1.1 million of recurring annual gain.

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