Maintenance Strategies For Asset Intensive Industries – Why Can’t We All Get Along?

It’s a typical quandary in asset-intensive production environments. Maintenance management is tasked with ensuring that production equipment operates at peak efficiency so that production targets can be met. But, production management is sometimes reluctant to turn over equipment for maintenance because the resulting downtime might negatively impact their ability to meet those same targets. Those responsible for maintenance then lament that they can’t access the equipment to perform essential maintenance activities. As those on both sides of the fence know, this conflict can become a vicious circle, resulting in both insufficient maintenance and inadequate or poor quality production throughput.

Across the great divide

Responsible maintenance and production managers know they must coordinate their planning efforts to benefit the entire organization, not just their individual departments. More importantly, they have to frequently communicate and closely collaborate during the actual execution of the production and maintenance schedules to be sure they’re operating at maximum efficiency and that all targets-both production and maintenance-are met. The coordination and planning for these two different, but closely related, activities has typically been manual, time consuming and prone to error. Automated processes, however, can significantly improve the planning, scheduling and execution of both maintenance and production functions.

Most, if not all, asset-intensive production operations function in two primary p