The Mean Time To Repair (MTTR) is one of any manager’s favourite metrics. As the name implies, it represents the mean time required to repair a malfunction. It is a very strong indicator of how the maintenance department and technical operations management function. What can you do if you your MTTR is too high? The answer is not as complicated as you may think… and we are here to help!

How to calculate the MTTR

We’ve previously explained what MTTR is and how to calculate it. What we left out was how you to reduce MTTR within your company. Let’s briefly recall the MTTR formula:


This expression clearly shows that the MTTR is derived from only two variables — the total corrective maintenance time (i.e. the total time spent repairing equipment) and the number of repairs. To reduce MTTR, you will have to evaluate and try to reduce both factors.

How can I reduce my total corrective maintenance time?

The total maintenance time starts from the minute the malfunction is detected and only ends once it is resolved. This brings us onto our first big problem: too much time is spent between the malfunction being discovered and it being reported to a competent technician. If this is the case, implementing a more efficient facility management system could be the solution. If the technician cannot be physically present at the company, look for a partner that can provide remote assistance. You should also consider preparing your employees to do quick checks.

Equally, an excessively high repair time may be a warning sign that certain pieces of equipment should be replaced. If we combine the cost of repairing and losses/loss of productivity incurred during downtime, it’s very likely that replacing equipment will be more economical.

How can I reduce the number of repair actions?

Once again, the secret may lie within your team. If an operator notices that a particular machine or equipment is under-performing, a service technician should be called immediately. Acting quickly can avert a total malfunctioning of the asset and could prevent a complete shutdown of production. In the case of an emergency, the technical operations manager should be available to give a prompt response and to review the protocol with the team.

Almost all equipment requires periodic revisions. In the case of heavy-duty machines, actually replacing some mechanical components regularly (often annually) is highly recommended. What you may not know yet is that you can automate these notifications, ensure that all maintenance is up to date and therefore reduce the number of repair actions using a good CMMS.

In short, reducing the MTTR involves three factors — accelerating malfunction reporting, centralising and organising information and investing in equipment maintenance. Review these three items successfully and we’re pretty sure you’ll be able to reduce your company’s mean time to repair in time for 2019.