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Developing Performance Indicators for Managing Maintenance is designed to provide the key details on how to measure and improve one of the most important functions in an organization today: Equipment or Asset Maintenance Management.
Developing Performance Indicators for Managing Maintenance
(Total Productive Maintenance)

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   by Terry Wireman
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Industrial Press Inc.
Provides the key details on how to measure and improve equipment and asset management. SALE! Use Promotion Code TNET11 on book link to save 25% and shipping.
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Total Productive Maintenance

This chapter examines one of the most misunderstood and misapplied concepts in modern organizations. Total productive maintenance is not as much a maintenance initiative or improvement program as it is a strategic operational philosophy.


Total productive maintenance (TPM) involves everyone in the organization, from operators to top management, in equipment improvement.


Equipment improvement does not just mean incremental improvements, but also optimum utilization of the equipment. The goal is to eliminate all equipment losses. There are many theories on exact number of equipment losses, but the basic six to eliminate are:



Set up and adjustment losses

Idling and minor stoppage losses

Start up and shutdown losses

Reduced speed or capacity losses

Quality defects or rework


The goal is to eliminate all of these losses from the equipment operation, thus insuring maximum overall equipment efficiency. Eliminating these losses is beyond the ability of any one department. Therefore, TPM is an operational philosophy. All departments that impact the utilization of the equipment in some manner are involved; all must be part of the TPM program. Figure 11.1 illustrates the TPM philosophy.



As shown by the graphic, all departments must focus on how they impact the equipment. The diagram is the same as the one used to illustrate the Total Quality Management (TQM) process, except that instead of focusing on the product, TPM focuses on the equipment. In fact, companies that were successful with TQM are usually successful with the TPM process. However, those companies who typically had difficulties with TQM also have difficulty with TPM.


Currently, one of the biggest problems facing TPM is one that created problems for Total Quality Management as well: downsizing. Downsizing undermines employee motivation, which is a critical success factor for TPM implementation and continuance. If there are not sufficient, highly-motivated, and highly-skilled employees involved, TPM has little chance of succeeding.


If TPM is an operational philosophy, then what are the goals and objectives for the process? There is really one goal (some call them pillars) and four supporting initiatives. The goal is to continuously improve equipment effectiveness. The company wants to insure that nowhere in the world does any other company have the same equipment or processes that it has or is able to get more throughput out of the equipment or processes than it can. Otherwise, that competitor will be the low-cost producer, leaving the company in second place.


A common illustration compares your equipment and process with a NASCAR racing team. In a NASCAR event, all of the cars are basically the same, just as your company and your competitors have basically the same equipment. The winner is determined by how the team, (pit crew, design engi-


neers, driver, fabrication technicians, etc.) works together and focuses on winning the race. The low-cost producer in competitive markets today is determined by how the organization works together and focuses on getting more out of the same assets as its competitors. This focus is the philosophy of TPM.


The philosophy is supported by four other improvement activities.


  1. Improve maintenance efficiency and effectiveness.
  2. Focus on early equipment management and maintenance prevention.
  3. Train to improve the skills of all personnel involved.
  4. Involve the operators in some daily maintenance on their equipment.


Improving maintenance efficiency and effectiveness insures that the maintenance department is as effective and efficient as a NASCAR pit crew. The performance of a pit crew is measured in tenths of a second. Any wasted time during a pit stop, as little as one tenth of a second, can mean the difference between winning and losing. One tenth of a second crossing the finish line is two car lengths. Races are won and lost every season by two car lengths. How much time do the maintenance crews for your company waste each day? Enough to make a difference in profit or loss to your bottom line?


Focusing on early equipment management and maintenance prevention means examining equipment for ways to make it more maintainable or eliminate the maintenance activity completely. New automobiles are the best example of this activity. Compared to the models in the 1970s, the cars need less maintenance (tune ups), yet performance is not sacrificed. Design changes were made based on engineering studies. The same can apply with production equipment in plants today. Engineering studies can be made to find better materials, methods, and even ways to make maintenance faster to perform.


Training has been mentioned in an earlier chapter. It is critical to train employees for the new tasks that they will be performing. Without training, the tasks will be performed partially or incorrectly. This leads to poor results, and may actually create equipment problems. Any time operators are asked to perform new tasks, they must be trained.


Involving the operators in some daily maintenance on their equipment, as mentioned previously, is designed to relieve some of the maintenance technician’s time to concentrate on higher-level activities. However, the focus here is also to involve the operators in tasks that make the equipment perform better. Again, the focus on continuously improving equipment effectiveness must never be lost when defining the task for operators.


Because TPM really is an operating philosophy, what are some of the performance measures for TPM? The following are some suggested indicators.


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