Example Flowchart With Legend

EP Editorial Staff | February 21, 2013


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Legend for Equipment Management Program Schematic

This legend explains the maintenance management schematic. It illustrates an effective way to explain the maintenance program to personnel from all departments. As you read the diagram, follow the numerical sequence, noting the captions on the diagram and reading the corresponding explanation in this legend.

1. Operators perform periodic equipment checks to establish whether equipment is running properly. While the design of modern equipment often provides monitoring systems or protected systems with alarms and signals, the additional personal attention of operators often finds the unusual problems that might be missed. Moreover, these checks exhibit the interest of the operator in the equipment, a fact very much appreciated by the maintenance craftsmen. Operators submit reports of equipment condition to operating supervisors.

2. Operations supervisors, in turn, review the operators’ reports as a potential source of future work.

3. Operations supervisors then determine whether new work is required and specify the unit, the problem, and the urgency of the job, and then identify themselves as work requesters using the standard work request procedure.

4. If the work required is an emergency, the operations supervisor could make a verbal request to expedite repair.

5. Upon receipt of work requests, the maintenance supervisor initially classifies the work. If the work requested meets the criteria for being planned, it would be forwarded to the planner. In the case of emergency repairs, the maintenance supervisor would assign work immediately. Work requests for an emergency would be created to facilitate reporting of resource use such as labor and materials by maintenance crew members.

6. The maintenance supervisor would advise the planner of all work that requires planning based on his assessment of the planning criteria. As necessary, he would advise the planner of any special requirements that the work entails.

7. Maintenance planners utilize the information system to determine which PM services are due the following week. The information system identifies PM services due based on fixed time intervals such as weeks or variable intervals like operating hours. Ordinarily, the PM module of the information system is updated once a week, and at that time services due the following week are identified and placed on the preliminary maintenance plan. Some PM services are dynamic and can be carried out while the equipment is running. These PM services are assigned directly to the maintenance supervisor so he can fit them into the week’s work at the first opportunity. Other PM services due are static services, requiring that the equipment be shut down in order to perform the work. These services are handled by the planner. They are fitted into the weekly plan along with major jobs.

 8. The information system should have the capability of forecasting the approximate timing of the replacement of major components, such as engines and drive motors. In addition, the approximate timing of major unique jobs such as overhauls is also forecasted. These forecasted actions are normally displayed week by week so that the planner may query the information system and determine what actions are due the following week. After these are identified, the planner determines the actual condition of the equipment, and, after conferring with maintenance supervisors, may either place the activity on the proposed plan for the following week or defer the work based on current repair history and the actual operating condition of the equipment.

9. After the planner has assembled all of the potential work that would be attempted for the following week, she roughs out a preliminary plan to include major component replacements, unique major jobs such as overhauls, and static PM services. The plan does not become a schedule until it has been presented to operations personnel and they concur that the plan should be carried out.

10. In carrying out the planning steps, planners address the following issues:

            Identify the work required

            Investigate in the field to determine exact needs

            Seek advice from the supervisor who will do the work

            Determine whether any standards apply

            Confirm the job scope

            Make a job plan

            Set up the preliminary work order

            Determine resources that will be needed

            Establish the labor requirements by craft

            Identify materials needed and the sources

            Specify any shop work

            Estimate job cost

            Establish the job priority with operations

            Get the job approved: cost and preliminary timing

            Identify the possible future time for doing the work

            Open the work order, making it an “official” accounting document

            Order materials through purchasing

            Reserve the stocked parts

            Order the shop work

            Await the receipt of materials and completion of shop work

            As materials are ready, confer with operations on job timing

            Develop a preliminary weekly plan

            Review plan internally before the scheduling meeting with operations

Information on the repeated conduct of work, such as the replacement of major components, is used to develop standards for such jobs. These standards include task lists, bills of materials, and tool lists. Timing of component replacements is based on the historic life-span of the components. Many organizations have developed forecasting procedures to help identify the timing of components replacement.

With the advent of more sophisticated condition-monitoring techniques, forecasting has become a dependable source of information for maintenance actions. It simplifies planning by providing proven standards for repetitive tasks. As unique major jobs are being planned, the maintenance engineer is called on to establish the job scope. The job scope specifies the work necessary to restore the equipment to an as-designed condition. The maintenance engineer prescribes steps that will ensure the reliability of equipment and the application of techniques that ensure its maintainability. With the requirement for using more sophisticated condition-monitoring techniques to secure the increased reliability, this role is more important than ever. Predictive techniques must be used expertly. In addition, maintenance engineers will be scrutinizing the entire program. They will verify the application of PM techniques, the use of modern technology, and the effectiveness of information use. The maintenance engineer can contribute significantly to the successful implementation of new technologies required for equipment management programs.

11. Planners reserve stock materials required for major jobs to be carried out for the following week. In addition, they instruct the purchasing agent to procure direct charge materials. Planners use the information system’s purchase order tracking system to monitor the status of these purchase orders. They also order the shop support, confer with the shop planner, and provide sub–work orders as required. They monitor shop work progress using the information system’s work order status report.

12. The cost of materials is debited to the appropriate work orders so the total cost of each job along with the cost of labor can be established. When the work is completed, the total cost of each job can be determined.

13. As materials and shop work become available, the planner assembles a preliminary plan of all candidate work orders and discusses them internally with maintenance supervisors to ensure that all are feasible and ready to go. See A.

14. The preliminary maintenance plan for the following week is reviewed by maintenance supervisors to determine whether it is feasible and complete or if certain jobs might be deferred or canceled.

15. The approved maintenance plan is then presented to operations by the maintenance supervisor at the weekly operations–maintenance scheduling meeting. It is important that the supervisor present the plan to operations because he is ultimately responsible for carrying out. The planner provides a supporting role during the scheduling meeting in the event that job priorities must be changed or resources rearranged to be able to carry out the schedule effectively. The weekly scheduling meeting with operations is the opportunity for maintenance to present its plan for accomplishing major jobs and key static PM services for the following week. Based on the production plan, operations will consider the needs for equipment and the “mix” they must have against the requirement to perform maintenance at the recommended times. Similarly, the shutdown of fixed equipment, lines, or areas is considered. Necessary negotiations are carried out by the principals with the coordinating planner acting as an advisor. Scheduling meetings should be chaired by the decision makers who will be responsible for making equipment available and accomplishing the work. Given the accountability demanded of all departments, purchasing agents and warehouse supervisors should attend scheduling meetings to ensure that their responsibilities are being met. The scheduling meeting should conclude with an approved schedule. Thereafter, operations should make equipment available according to the schedule, and maintenance would make its resources available to perform the work. The objective is to accomplish the work with the least interruption to operations and the best use of maintenance resources.

During the week when scheduled jobs are being done, daily coordination meetings between operations and maintenance are held to make adjustments in the schedule in the event of any delays.

Many plant managers use the weekly scheduling meeting as an opportunity to assess progress against their overall improvement goals such as

            PM program compliance

            Reduction in backlog

            Compliance with last week’s schedule

            Reduction in overtime

            Reduction in emergency repairs

            On-site parts delivery performance by the warehouse

16. As a result of the negotiations carried out between maintenance and operations during a scheduling meeting, the plan may be modified to better meet the needs of operations and to utilize maintenance resources more effectively. The scheduling meeting is followed by daily coordination meetings between operations and maintenance to adjust the schedule in the event of delays. See B.

17. The approved schedule is now distributed to all interested parties.

18. Maintenance supervisors are now assigned the work specified on the approved schedule. This step suggests that each supervisor has the opportunity to coordinate directly with purchasing, shops, or the warehouse for on-site material delivery. In addition, transportation and service departments should help coordinate their support. The supporting planner might be asked to assist in coordinating for the supervisor who will be on the jobsite controlling the work. Supervisors assign work on the schedule to individual maintenance personnel. They provide appropriate work orders and necessary instructions for carrying out the work. In addition, operating supervisors are advised when they should make equipment available so that maintenance work can be carried out.

19. Using the weekly schedule as a guide, maintenance supervisors give work assignments to maintenance crew members on a day-to-day basis. As necessary, supervisors consult the information system to determine whether there are any pending small jobs on the same equipment scheduled for shutdown and whether these smaller jobs might be fitted in.

20. Maintenance crew members perform PM services on planned jobs, respond to emergencies, perform unscheduled repairs, and carry out routine services.

21. Craftsman and operators confer during the inspection of equipment by maintenance crew members. Operators can explain unusual equipment behavior while craftsmen can show operators simple, helpful checks or adjustments. With mobile equipment, operators are often not present. Therefore, comments are provided based on operator check sheets. As a result of personal inspection, operator input, and results of the operator’s checks, the craftsman can make an accurate, complete list of equipment deficiencies and their relative seriousness. These deficiencies should be identified to the equipment component level. Generally, there are three types of deficiencies:

Emergency repairs. Deficiencies found just in time to avert an injury, equipment failure, or serious loss of product or production time are usually emergency repairs. These jobs should be acted on as soon as possible and, in most instances, key people advised in the event that other actions, like the use of alternate equipment, are necessary.

Unscheduled minor repairs. The most numerous deficiencies found are those smaller repairs that do not have to be done immediately. These are unscheduled jobs. But because they can develop into more serious problems, they must be recorded and fitted in at the first opportunity. (Maintenance supervisors should instruct craftsmen to always finish the whole PM service before making any lengthy repairs. This procedure should be followed because the PM service must be performed within a specific time limit. If too many small, incidental repairs are made ‘as you go,’ there is a good chance that the total service might not be completed. Thus, there is a danger that problems not found are more serious than those repaired. Conversely, it is a good idea to add a few minutes to the specified time to make simple adjustments that require only tools or limited materials just to save a return trip.)

Major repairs. A limited number of deficiencies will indicate a need to make significant repairs. These are potentially planned jobs. But if PM services are conducted faithfully, these jobs will always be found far enough in advance to be able to plan the work. Craftsmen should make a special effort to establish the exact nature of the problem so it can be accurately described to the maintenance supervisor and, in turn, to the planner.

Craftsmen should advise production supervisors directly on the deficiencies they have found and how serious they are. This thoughtful act not only does the operations supervisor a great favor in giving her a current condition report, but it lets her know that the PM program is alive and well.

Moreover, when she learns that each deficiency found will be taken care of, she sees a solid partnership developing with maintenance people. She is also delighted to know that her operators have contributed with their checks. This action spreads good will and cooperation.

22. Go to #5. Craftsmen get together with the maintenance supervisor and together they decide on the actions to be taken on the deficiencies reported. Craftsmen supply firsthand information on actual equipment condition, and supervisors provide knowledge of the bigger picture of what to do, when to do it, and how. Specific decisions are now made on each type of deficiency relative to equipment condition, the urgency of corrective actions, the current plant situation, and the availability of maintenance resources. First, the emergency repairs are acted on. Generally, verbal orders are used to assign work to available craftsmen with followup work orders after the repairs are attended to. Next, those deficiencies requiring planning (#6) are discussed with the planner. In this instance, the prudent maintenance organization will already have provided sensible criteria of what work is to be planned. Thus, the planner, supervisor, and craftsman are in full accord. The craftsman performing the PM services should enter all of the unscheduled new jobs into the work order system. Remember that the craftsmen performing the work are the best source of information. Always use them.

23. As maintenance services are performed, craftsmen may also be called on while near or on the equipment, as with mobile equipment, to provide informal help. Generally, supervisors should have provided criteria to the craftsmen to determine whether any of the informal repairs made should be entered into repair history.

24. In the process of doing work, maintenance crew members may require additional stock materials. See C.

25. Upon completion of work, maintenance crew members report the labor used. This data is subsequently verified by the maintenance supervisor. Labor and material data recorded on work orders, along with other information such as failure codes, is processed by the information system to provide information reports for managing maintenance, such as labor utilization, cost reports, repair history, work order status, and backlog.




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