ATEX Rated Maintenance Management System

What we are trying to solve

We need to ensure that all equipment is managed properly. The planned preventative maintenance schedule, follow-on work orders and the reactive maintenance schedule must be managed, along with any spare parts which are needed to ensure that the systems are as reliable as possible.

The site is subject to regulations, with a number of rated areas. This means that, for example, any equipment that is rated must be flagged as such, and the rating of that equipment recorded.  The basic maintenance process that is will be following is described in the diagram below.

Structure of the organization

There are two divisions: Production and Care & Maintenance. Both of these divisions are different legal entities, and so need to be managed completely separately from a financial perspective. Most of the equipment is associated with the production division, with a much smaller equipment base in the Care & Maintenance division.

The maintenance technicians will be working for a central organisation – a shared services group – and will then be despatched to work on the various equipment as needed. The maintainers will usually (but not exclusively) work in either the production area or in the Care & Maintenance area.

Interface to finance

There will be no interface to any finance system as this is a temporary system until the ERP system is implemented. It will be important to produce financial reporting from the system however, so that the cost of any maintenance tasks can be accounted for, as well as the cost of maintenance for any particular machine. The reporting should be in both PDF and Excel format ( could be XLSX or CSV format )

Hosting

The system should be cloud hosted, in a GDPR compliant datacentre. System uptime should be close to 100%, with availability on a 24×7 basis as the site will be running 24 hours a day.

Work costing

Each technician will have a cost allocated to them – probably a standard cost per hour. This cost should be used to calculate the total cost of labour for any job. The cost of any materials that is consumed from the store or procured via a PO should also be allocated to the work order. Some work will need a subcontractor, which should also be included along with any costs from purchases that don’t have a PO, for example purchase via credit card.

Equipment costing

All work against a piece of equipment should be costed, and automatically rolled up to the overall equipment costs. It will then be possible to easily see the cost of maintenance for any piece of equipment.

Asset structure

A multi-level asset structure is needed whereby the assets are split down to the following:

  • Area
  • Equipment
  • Item

All spare parts are allocated to the asset on the machine. This item will link to a store stock code, which will be a different number. A single stores stock number can map to many asset numbers. Each field in the structure needs to be an alphanumeric field.

Work orders

The heart of the requirement is the Work Order. All work must be controlled by the Work Order, be that a Planned Maintenance task or a reactive maintenance task. No team member will be able to start work without a work order. Costs are all allocated to the work order. The strategic goal for the system will be to ensure that technicians have some kind of electronic device to access their work orders, however in the short term these will be printed out & handed to the technician. The technician will update the work order after the work is complete back at the office.

Planned Maintenance

Each PM job should have a task list, a parts list and also a checklist which documents any specific checks that need to be made – for example a current reading when a motor is running normally. All parts will either need a stores item number, or details of a PO that should be created. The PM will also be categorized, so that it’s easily possible to understand what kind of PM it is – Safety Critical, Critical, Standard etc. These lists should be printed out (or be available via an app on a tablet or phone) so that they can be used at the workplace & the results of the tests be recorded.

The results of any tests should be held individually so that it’s possible to do trend analysis on the figures, rather than being held as a text field which cannot be reported from. These figures should be linked to the machine and allow, in the future, for an automated collection of data.

Scheduling

Each task ( with the exception of reactive, breakdown maintenance tasks ) will be scheduled & will be allocated to one or more technicians. It should be possible to easily see the workload of each technician as well as the overall tasks that are ongoing during any chosen day. Tasks may be “one-off” tasks or repetitive tasks, based on a time rota. Some equipment may have multiple PMs – maybe a simple PM weekly but then a more in-depth PM on a monthly basis. The system should not issue a weekly PM when a monthly PM is being undertaken in this case. It’s sometimes necessary to “borrow” a technician from one division to another if the workload demands. The system must be able to allocate technicians from one division to a work order in the other division.

The scheduling of maintenance tasks needs to be undertaken on a graphical screen, which will show the loading for each technician & will flag up if the technician is approaching 100% loading. Planning should be on an infinite capacity planning basis, so that the scheduler will be able to over/under load any technician as appropriate. There should be a drag & drop capability to move work items from one day to the next & also to easily reassign work orders to other technicians.

Planning

Each scheduled work order needs to be planned, so that the number of people and also the required parts are all allocated to the job. This will allow the system to manage the stock movements, including procurement of parts in an MRP system.

Improvement work

These small projects will have a number of different tasks, which will be managed as work orders. They all need to be held together so that an overall cost can be collated for the improvement work. These costs must be able to be split between labour costs & parts costs. It must be possible to run a report on all improvement projects to identify the costs of the project. These costs should be split down into internal labour, external labour & parts.

Reactive maintenance

Any breakdown that comes in to the departments should be managed through the system. The exact piece of equipment and fault description should be logged. It should also be possible to allocate spare parts to the reactive maintenance job, time that the technician spends and also the cost of any third party that also needs to be brought in, if needed. This will usually be in the form of the cost of a purchase order that’s sent to the third party to perform some work.

Inspections

One of the vitally important areas of work in the business will be inspection PMs. These are work orders that ensure that the equipment is safe to operate. There will be different categories of inspections, with some being rated as “ critical”, and if these are missed then they should be rated as a “near miss”, and investigated appropriately. It should be easy to get a list of the  Critical inspection=s for the week, and understand which have yet to be completed. A report should also be available that details any missed  Critical inspections that have been missed in any defined period of time.

Recording of work done

It must be possible, for all types of work order, to record the exact work that has been completed and any spare parts that have been consumed. Reactive maintenance should, in addition, have fault codes which can be allocated to the job so that later analysis of the various breakdowns is possible.

Stock

There is a large amount of stock associated with the various equipment that will be installed on-site. All of this stock must be managed. Each piece of stock must be linked to one or more pieces of equipment. The stock must be held in a defined location, and the cost of the item as well as a primary & secondary supplier for that item. Lead-time must also be managed.

Any stock withdrawal should be allocated to a piece of equipment. The system should manage the stock levels, so that if any item reaches a defined level, then the system will alert the stock controller that an order needs to be placed for that item. The system must be able to create a report of all items, grouped by supplier, so that the stores controller is able to easily manage the reordering process. This stock management facility also needs to look ahead into the future work orders that are being scheduled to ensure that the required spare parts will be available for the technicians to carry out the work when it’s due. It should be possible to hold phantom stock items, which have a zero stock holding. When a demand is made on these items, the system will then flag up that the item needs to be purchased.

Stock purchased will generally be procured via a purchase order. The stock system should issue a PO for any purchase, and if a purchase is needed for a non-stock item, then a PO will normally be issued for that part too. There may be occasions where a PO will not be issued – the cost of the part in this case also needs to be captured. Any stock item should be replaced with a part that’s an exact replacement. If an equivalent part is to be used, then a formal change management process must be undertaken. No part can be changed for an equivalent without the change management process being completed and documented. This documentation should be attached to the stock part in the store.

All rated stock should be flagged as such, in a way that is easy for the viewer to see that this part needs to be carefully managed.

Consignment stock

There are some items – such as nuts & bolts – which are held on consignment stock. These items are generally of low value, and will not be recorded by the system against any work order.

Stock numbering

Stock will be numbered in an 8 digit alphanumerical sequence.

Stock locations

Each part will be held in its own stores location. There could be multiple warehouses:

  • Main store
  • PDU store

The parts will have their own locations in the warehouse. This will be a structured location scheme in the main store:

  • Aisle number
  • Rack number
  • Shelf number
  • Bin number