Effective Maintenance Supervision

Effective Maintenance Supervision

 Effective Maintenance Supervision

“Ideas for Effective Maintenance Supervision - Feedback”  By Ricky Smith CMRP CRL (rsmith@peopleandprocesses)
If you read this article, what are you are going to do differently as a result? Please post your comments so we can all learn from each other."  Maintenance Supervision the heart of any maintenance and reliability program. Do not let my words confuse you, Maintenance is act of Maintaining, Reliability is % of time equipment meets the intent of the end users. 

Creating effective maintenance supervisors is one of the most important investments you can make. This article provides “lessons learned” from successful and not so successful maintenance supervisors and will hopefully provide ideas which can take maintenance supervision to the next level.

Many companies invest money and time in areas to improve equipment reliability and maintenance and are disappointed when they do not receive the return on investment they expected. Whatever they did was not sustainable or was not accepted by the maintenance staff. If you were to execute one thing effectively which would provide a serious improvement to equipment reliability it would be to improve the leadership, management, and technical skills of your maintenance supervisor or supervisors.
Let’s identify the traits required of a successful maintenance supervisor.
  1. Live and Breathe Excellence in everything you do; talk it, walk it, and share it 
  2. Be Technically Proficient – a maintenance supervisor does not need to be a maintenance person however they need technical skills on proper maintenance in order to lead a maintenance crew. Ask for help or send me an email, I will help you. 
  3. Seek Self Improvement – Each day improve at least one thing. 
  4. Provides Education and Training for your Maintenance Team - Provide your team 10-20 minutes of Single Point Lessons a week. These are topics which begin to build confidence in them and you. Send me an email and I will provide you access to my library of the single point learning sessions. (crew respect increases by the activity) 
  5. Accept Responsibility for your Actions - Always accept responsibility even if you are wrong. Being humble is a trait of great people throughout history. 
  6. Be respectful of your Staff and others – Treat people like you would like to be treated at all times. This develops a team atmosphere and breeds success. 
  7. Be a leader even if it means you make mistakes sometimes – admit your mistakes but shake them off and never repeat them again. 
  8. Never Accept Credit for Anything - If something works well that you did either do not say anything and smile to yourself or give credit to the right people. 
  9. Know the Proactive Maintenance Process – hold people at all levels accountable to follow it even if it is painful.

A maintenance supervisor must understand how the proactive maintenance domain functions in a proactive state and what leading and lagging KPIs are required to perform their job to optimal level. Listed below are a few examples of the KPIs which should used to manage a proactive maintenance domain along with a few tips for maintenance management and supervision.
Work Identification which includes the following. PM inspections (15-30% Labor hrs.), Results from PM (15-25%), PdM inspections (10-15%), Results from PdM (15-35%) and 5-20% from work request, operator care, commissioning, projects, etc.  Maintenance Planning – 90% of all Work must be planned to some level. The level is determined based on the skill level of your staff. 
At the minimum a planned job must include repeatable procedure, parts required kitted, potential parts identified and reserved by the planner (you may need this part but there is low probability), drawing, specifications, special tools required, etc. The job cannot be scheduled without the complete plan completed and parts kitted. (this is a hard fast rule not to be violated)

Planners do not report to the maintenance supervisor in order to ensure the supervisor cannot influence a planner to move toward reactivity however the supervisor must work as a partner with the planner to ensure solid job plans are prepared and developed. Your role is to be a true partner with the planner and do not ask them to expedite parts or material because of an emergency. That is your job.
  •  % of Planned Work     
  • I highly recommend you purchase the SMRP Metrics which provides the best proactive metrics, definitions, examples along with a few great ideas. Go to the following link to purchase these metrics, http://library.smrp.org/1kohka/1.
Maintenance Scheduling can only be developed when a job is planned and parts are kitted (if parts are required) in order to manage in a proactive environment. Scheduling Maintenance Work is a maintenance planner's area of responsibility and requires input, cooperation and agreement from maintenance and production supervision. 
Proactive work should be scheduled at least one week in advance and cover at least 90% of a maintenance person’s time. The maintenance supervisor ensures the schedule is executed on time with effective results. Daily the planner/scheduler, maintenance supervisor, and production supervisor will need to discuss in a short meeting any changes to the schedule. 
  • Schedule Compliance by day in a week is the best metric for this processMaintenance Work Performed effectively is the total responsibility of the maintenance supervisor and maintenance technician. A Maintenance Supervisor now becomes a coach and not a player. If a change to the plan is required the maintenance supervisor needs to ask why and be sure the decision is technically correct.
  • Rework is the best metric for this area  Work Order Close Out is the responsibility of the maintenance supervisor to ensure the codes and information are correct on all work orders. The supervisor must adhere to strict compliance in this area. Without correct data entry metrics, KPIs, and reports will not be accurate. Metrics should never be used to talk down to someone or the team. Always be positive no matter what you hear from your management. If a metric does not show the results management expects ask the maintenance team their thoughts on the metric and how they would turn the metric around. Implement your crews recommends even if you have to lead them to the answer.

Develop the process and expectation for work order close out and define roles and responsibilities with all involved in this area. The Maintenance Supervisor is the person “Accountable” to ensure work orders are closed out correct by all technicians. A little guidance ensures consistency. 
This was not easy to implement as I found out when I was a maintenance supervisor however good data is key to ensure the data management reviewed is accurate and would assist a maintenance supervisor manage more effectively.Talk about these metrics daily with your crew, never talk negative, always positive. 

Continuous Improvement is a key part of an effective and consistent maintenance program and requires it to be managed and measured. This requires:
  1. An effective PM / PdM Program (MTBF is going up)     
  2. An effective Planning and Scheduling Process (wrench time is going up and more is being completed effectively and efficiently).     
  3. Repeatable Work Procedures with specifications and standards is a must.     
  4. Maintenance Leadership to QA/QC the entire process to ensure people are following the process for proactive maintenance.     
  5. Failure Reporting - # of Failures by Asset Type are key to the success of any organization and even more as a maintenance supervisor. If you do not know where you are, you will never arrive on time. Follow the Guiding Principles listed below for use of KPIs and how to use them effectively.
Example: Ineffective PM Program – PM Labor Hours vs Emergency Labor hours
Your comments and suggestions are appreciated.

To all my friends, The Maintenance Community on Slack is an incredible free space where over 1,500 maintenance and reliability professionals like myself share real life experiences with each other.   
To join us, sign up here: https://upkeep.typeform.com/to/icC8EKPT

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