IET, Inc.
3539 Glendale Ave
Toledo, Ohio 43614

Case Study 2-01982

Fixing maintenance boosts performance.

IET’s comprehensive review of an equipment maintenance group revealed opportunities to improve productivity almost 25%.

The Customer

Novartis Consumer Health develops and manufactures a wide range of products that enhance the health and well-being of consumers.

The Challenge

Continual pressure to bring down labor costs prompted one facility to examine its maintenance department because its size exceeded that of similar plants within the division. This group of workers performed a range of activities including preventive maintenance, calibration procedures, emergency repairs and special projects, but managers had no reliable data to indicate how the workers spent their time when assigned to the various activities. The customer needed objective evidence to support any changes.

The Solution

IET provided a team of engineers to measure and evaluate the maintenance staff’s work content. Utilizing work sampling techniques, IET’s engineers observed different maintenance crews performing their normal work routines and recorded various work activities as value added, non-value added, or delays. In addition to direct observation, the team analyzed historical work order records to understand what drives the need for maintenance manpower. IET recommended various changes to improve productivity, such as adopting work standards for routine calibration and preventive maintenance procedures, training operators to perform basic cleaning and lubrication tasks, improving the work planning process to reduce unnecessary travel for obtaining/returning parts and tools, and screening work order requests with cost/benefit criteria. Overall, IET concluded that maintenance productivity could be increased almost 25% with minimal expenditures.

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