Industrial maintenance is a substantial financial post. The total value of maintenance budgets in Europe has been estimated to be approximately 1500 billion € per year. At the same time, there are indications that about a third of these costs are wasted due to poor planning, overtime costs, inferior use of preventive maintenance and so forth. However, the diversity between different types of industry is substantial.
While the process industry, which is rather vulnerable to disturbances, has a tradition of viewing its maintenance as a strategic resource, the picture is quite different in discrete item manufacturing industry. Historically, manufacturing industry has had a surplus of finished goods and Work-In-Progress buffers between machinery. Therefore, the manufacturing industry has been able to fulfil its production demand despite unreliable production equipment. In the last few decades, the concept of lean production has started to spread within the manufacturing industry as a means to improve competitiveness. Manufacturing companies apply lean tools such as flow oriented production layout, Just-In-Time production and Demand-Flow-Technology. As a consequence, the vulnerability to system disturbances increases and hence, the demand for dependable production equipment increases. Despite this increasing demand on reliable production equipment, few manufacturing companies work with strategic maintenance development. One reason for this may be that the existing methods and concepts for maintenance development are quite resource demanding.
The main objective with this research is to develop a simple and cost effective approach aimed to formulate, implement, and evaluate maintenance strategies for the manufacturing industry. In five case studies the following has been studied: (1) The industry’s view on strategic maintenance development, (2) Formulation of maintenance strategies, (3) Implementation of maintenance strategies, (4) Cost of Poor Maintenance, and (5) Results from strategic maintenance development.
As a result from this research, a process for the formulation of maintenance strategies has been developed. Further, a number of driving forces and obstacles, that influence the implementation of maintenance strategies, have been identified. The concept of Cost of Poor Maintenance has been introduced as a means for evaluating the financial contribution of maintenance. Finally, three years of studies in three companies has shown substantial benefits from strategic maintenance development.
Västerås: Mälardalen University , 2011.