The goal of maintenance management is to control the resources, time and costs of a company to ensure the efficiency and adequacy of the maintenance operations and to avoid waste of resources or periods of downtime due to faulty equipment.
Picture the following situations…:
- In a factory all the available technicians are, for some reason, tasked with performing maintenance activities on pieces of equipment that are not essential to production, such as air conditioners or lighting equipment. Meanwhile, an essential production machine is left unattended;
- Several technicians are tasked with repairing a given piece of equipment, where the work of a single technician would have been sufficient to resolve the failure in due time.
Both situations are examples of bad maintenance management. In case 1, the production may need to be halted because of a failure that is left unattended due to poor allocation of technicians; in case 2, assigning the same maintenance task to multiple technicians will result in an unnecessary loss of money for the company.
What does this tell us?
In scenarios like these, we realise that adequate work scheduling and cost control are two main purposes of maintenance management. The manager should have a good understanding of the company’s operations and needs in order to choose which maintenance works need prioritising in order to minimise the negative impact on the company.
Furthermore, managers should always be able to evaluate which options are the most cost-sustainable in both the long and short-term. This may include choosing between buying a more expensive, but more durable, set of equipment, or a cheaper but less durable one (in most cases, the best option is the one that represents the best ratio with regards to value for money with the highest durability)
Another important aspect of a maintenance manager’s job is ensuring full compliance with rules and regulations. If we look back at example 2 above, it is possible that a specific maintenance work task is legally required to be performed by more than one technician for safety reasons. In this case, although assigning a single technician could, in theory, be sufficient and cheaper for the company, the company is at risk of breaking the law and may be at risk of severe consequences. A manager should be on top of these sorts of issues.
Maintenance management also involves the definition of the most adequate maintenance strategies, such as Preventive vs Reactive Maintenance.
That’s because it is! Fortunately, Computerised Maintenance Management Software (CMMS) programs exist to simplify all processes by gathering and storing all necessary information for you. This facilitates communication between maintenance managers and technicians through platforms accessible on multiple devices.
With Infraspeak, for instance, it is possible for managers to monitor operations in real-time, to schedule preventive maintenance cycles, to generate reports, among many other features. All ensuring greater organisation, lower costs and greater quality of life for the maintenance managers.