45 Fifth principle early equipment management

Equipment management concerns the complete equipment life cycle from

concept to disposal. The principle of Early Equipment Management recognizes the importance of the early stages in the reduction of life cycle costs.

This principle is implemented using three TPM for Design (TPM (D)) techniques (see Table 4.1), each of which is directly linked to the improvement plan outputs.

Unless good equipment management skills are nurtured, the designers will not understand how to use shopfloor information, no matter how good it is. Furthermore, if the designers are not skilled enough to recognize operational weaknesses, they will not be able to create effective designs. Most designers have little work experience in equipment operation and maintenance, so they do not think in terms of operability and maintainability. However, they can overcome these weaknesses and build equipment design skills by:

• visiting the factory floor and hearing what the equipment operators and maintenance staff have to say;

• studying equipment that has been improved as a result of autonomous maintenance or quality maintenance activities and listening to project result announcements made by TPM circles;

• getting hands-on experience in cleaning, lubricating and inspecting equipment;

• conducting several P-M analyses based on checklists.

Designers should have their knowledge and skills evaluated in order to identify remaining weaknesses, facilitate self-improvement, and acquire on-the-job training in more advanced skills.

There is an extraordinarily powerful commercial advantage to a company when this vital pillar and principle of TPM can be mobilized and used to maximum effect. Designers, engineers, technologists, procurement, finance, operations and maintenance will then work as essential partners in the drive to improve the company's overall equipment effectiveness by eliminating many of the reasons for poor maintainability, operability and reliability at source (i.e. at the equipment design, engineering and procurement stage).

Table 4.1 TPM (D) links with 9 step TPM improvement plan

Component

Purpose

Link with improvement plan

Design process milestones and organization

Evolution of the design knowledge base

Objective testing

To co-ordinate the parallel activities of commercial, engineering and operations functions

To co-ordinate transfer of lessons learnt and adoption of best practice routines

To select equipment options based on evidence of suitability

Measurement cycle Assessment of loss Prioritization/ targets

Step 8 Best practice evolution

Results from Step 9 problem prevention activities

The infrastructure of core TPM teams supported by key contacts (see Figure 3.13) reflects the importance of TPM (D) both in retrofit on existing assets and for the next generation of equipment. Table 4.1 shows that this vital pillar is also focused through the measurement and problem prevention cycles of the nine-step TPM improvement plan. Chapter 9 is devoted to the subject of TPM for equipment designers, specifiers and planners.

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