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A Day in the Life of a Proactive Maintenance Supervisor

Uptime Article Fig 1

A maintenance supervisor should know the work scheduled for their maintenance staff a week prior, and then review the work the afternoon prior, and at the start of his/her shift. The process on the afternoon prior involves reviewing the next day's schedule with the planner/scheduler to ensure the next morning all maintenance technicians are aware of their work for the day; parts are staged, tools are available, and all coordination has been previously completed. If changes need to be made to the planning or scheduling, they can be adjusted at this time.

One hour before the morning shift, a maintenance supervisor ensures nothing has changed before their technicians are ready for work. The maintenance supervisor will receive an update on production or equipment conditions, or any problems that happened overnight from their shift personnel and production/operations supervision. This ensures the work scheduled for the day will go as planned when the technicians arrive at work. Any last minute changes can be made prior to his/her technicians arriving for work.

The goal is to ensure maximum utilization of all resources with little confusion at the start of the day's shift. "In a horse race, if a horse walks when the race begins he/she will end the race last; maintenance technicians are the same." A maintenance supervisor wants his/her technicians to begin their shift out of the gate running, and thus run all day effectively and efficiently.

Maintenance supervisor visits job sites to ensure no problems exist that will cause problems with the execution of the maintenance schedule. (Change the time you execute this function day to day so your staff does not know your schedule.)

The maintenance supervisor makes his/her rounds to ensure all work has started on time and no problems exist. If personnel are at a remote location, a call on the radio or text on the cell at a specific time validates that either everything is on schedule, or "we have a problem."

While the supervisor is making his/her rounds they should be performing QA/QC checks on the work being executed. Is the maintenance tech following a repeatable procedure? Is he/she using the right tool for the job? etc.

If a maintenance tech is working on a critical job, then he/she should call or text at a specific time to update whether everything is OK, or if there is a problem. This is key to the success of a critical job, otherwise maintenance techs get involved in the problem and think they have it resolved, however it continues on until it is too late and production or operations is impacted. It is important to always know in advance of a problem so it can be resolved quickly, possibly with more resources or coordination from production or operations.

Meeting with maintenance planner/scheduler, or both if they are different people.

It is best for this meeting to be held after the maintenance supervisor walks around checking on the work. In this meeting, we are looking forward to ensuring that planning and scheduling is effective.

This meeting is typically held in the morning to discuss or review any work that is required for the following week, new requests from management, projects in each area of responsibility, etc. This may require a visit to a job site which is to be planned and scheduled in the future.

Validating work order close out.

Sometime during the day, the maintenance supervisor should validate that all work from the previous day is accounted for by a work order and ensure the work order codes are accurate before any work order is closed. If a problem exists with the work order codes and information, the maintenance tech or techs should hold a meeting a few minutes before the end of the shift to ensure the codes are corrected and that the maintenance tech knows why they need to be changed.

Afternoon review of job packages for next day.

The planner/scheduler arrives at the supervisor's office for 10-20 minutes to ensure the job plan for tomorrow will be executed without aproblem. This was talked about at the beginning of the article.

Metrics / KPIs or Dashboard for the maintenance team.

As a result of the maintenance team's actions and the planner/scheduler's hard work, the team should know if their work is making a difference. A few Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) should be posted in the shop for all to see. If a KPI is not showing positive results, a maintenance team meeting may be scheduled for the next day. A maintenance supervisor wants the maintenance techs to identify the problem and identify a solution to improve the KPI. This requires patience and leadership.

Uptime Article Fig 2

A few KPI ideas are Mean Time Between Failure of critical assets, systems, etc., Mean Time Between Repair, and Equipment Availability. These should be posted in a line graph so trends can be seen. A correlation analysis should be completed monthly of these KPIs to validate if they impact production/operations KPIs.

This article was based on my experience as a maintenance supervisor and years of helping other maintenance supervisors become successful. If you have questions, comments, or want to receive my Tool Box Training Sessions, please contact me at rsmith@gpallied.com.

Accurate Work Order Close Out
Reference: ISO 14224

Accurate Work Order Close Out is important for the continuous improvement of any organization.

The objective of accurate data collection is to assist management in making the right decisions at the right time.

General Rules:

1. Work Orders should have at the minimum: the correct code (breakdown (1), urgent (2), etc.); the correct equipment number, at the right level; the maintenance person's accurate total work hours charged to this work order; the start time and complete time on the job; comments from the maintenance person as to what work was performed, or any recommendation to changes to maintenance strategy or plan; any parts used whether from the storeroom or not; and the maintenance signature.

Without this information one cannot determine:
• Actual maintenance cost for specific assets.
• Mean Time Between Failure
• Mean Time To Repair
• Mean Time Between Repairs
• Rework
• If a PM Procedure is effective.
• If a specific type repair is effective.
• If a maintenance strategy meets the intent of maintenance.

2. Repair or Corrective Work orders must have everything as stated above, plus component code, failure code, and cause code.

Without this above information one cannot determine:

• Dominant Failure Thread-which component has the most specific failure modes with a specific cause across multiple assets.

Uptime Article Fig 3

• Dominant Failure Pattern-which failure pattern is the most dominant, and what the major causes of failures for this pattern are. This allows one to develop strategies to eliminate unacceptable failures which impact the organization.

Uptime Article Fig 4

3. What should a Work Order have on it for Preventive Maintenance or Predictive Maintenance?

• The method to prevent or predict known
failure modes. (Failure mode-how something fails)

• On a PM procedure, it should have specific steps and specifications on what is to be done to known best practices.

Example: Lubricate Bearing:

Step 1: Clean the grease fitting.
Step 2: Clean the end of the grease gun.
Step 3: Insert 4 grams of lithium grease (two shots).

• Comments on the procedure as to the effectiveness of it or recommended changes required.

If you have questions or would like to receive the Tool Box Series send me an e-mail to rsmith@gpallied.com