More efficient maintenance is key to better industry results

This article was first published in Dagens Industri 31.5.2021 

 

In a maintenance department, only about 30 to 45 percent of the working day is devoted to actual and practical maintenance work. This is shown by several different surveys within heavy industry. With the help of modern processes, developed service culture and digital technology, it is possible to improve maintenance by 10 to 20 percent.

In recent years, the industry has undergone major changes with automation and efficiency. This requires innovation also from maintenance departments. 

– Maintenance is an important key factor in heavy industry. The larger and more complex the production, the more important it is that the workforce, methods, and processes for maintenance are aligned with the development, says Pekka Venäläinen, Regional Manager for Quant Europe. 

Quant is one of the pioneers in maintenance and maintenance development. For over 30 years, the company has improved the production, safety and performance of over 400 production facilities in various industries around the world. 

 

Taking advantage of untapped potential 

In heavy industry, there are great opportunities to streamline the entire execution process of maintenance, according to Pekka Venäläinen. 

– As an example, look at one of the facilities we have worked with. They had a staff of around 100 people, an average labour cost of EUR 40 per hour and an average productivity of just 37 percent in the maintenance department. This means that the plant lost approximately EUR 4.6 million annually in non-productive maintenance work. That time can be spent much better. 

Surveys also show that only a small proportion of the working day in a heavy industry maintenance department, about 30 to 45 percent, is devoted to actual maintenance work, i.e. planning and carrying out maintenance. 

– In other words, there is a great untapped potential here. Through our new service model, Maintenance Execution Partnership, and modern digital technology, we can help our customers build an efficient maintenance culture with improved safety procedures. 

 

Digital tools provide transparency 

Quant’s new service model is part of Quant’s total service offering and has been customized to improve maintenance work in heavy industry. 

– The model is based on partnerships and is an optimal solution for customers who manage the strategic development and management of production assets themselves, but who need support with developing the maintenance execution. We take over the responsibility for the execution of on-site maintenance and develop the processes, people and tools. The customer retains control, says Pekka Venäläinen. 

By using modern digital tools, both maintenance planning and decision-making processes can become fact-based. In this way improvement is made, which in turn leads to significantly more efficient maintenance processes. 

– We have gathered everything in one interface. Employees have the entire work order digitally in their mobile phones and do all the planning, implementation and security checks there.  

This enables them to always have up-to-date and accurate information, and they can identify the right actions at the right time. The digital interface is also transparent to the customer, who can follow Quant’s work directly from the computer or mobile phone. The information displayed can also be customized to suit each customer. 

 

Minimizes set times 

Quant recently launched the Maintenance Execution Partnership in the Nordic region, but the partnership model has been in their South American service portfolio for several years – with great success. Together with customers, Quant’s team has been able to improve the efficiency of maintenance execution by 10-20 percent. 

– The partnership model has generated improvements in both results and quality. We optimize maintenance costs while minimizing set time in production, says Pekka Venäläinen. 



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