Although a Southeast chemical plant was well-staffed, had high equipment productivity and was growing, the operating costs in an increasingly competitive market were reducing profit margins. High production levels were funded by high maintenance costs due to emergency change-outs, poor reliability and less than optimal asset life. Core repair maintenance work was completed by contractors, and plant reliability was more attributable to new equipment than strong reliability practices.
ABB Reliability Consulting was selected to work with plant personnel in improving performance. By combining an internally developed assessment process with ABB's World-Class Reliability® Benchmark and database, the client began identifying improvement opportunities. A multi-year plan was created, with a focus on linking core competencies with documented processes and procedures. In addition, a decision was made to convert those contractors working in critical areas to employee status.