for the Parts, Materials
A typical shutdown might have 1000 or more parts
and materials from a hundred vendors to manage. Initially, the purchasing team
leader, and eventually the logistics leader, are key players. They are
responsible for the process from ordering, shipping, expediting, delivery,
storage, on-site management and tracking, issuing and/or delivery to the work
site. The whole chain starts with the planner, who calls out the part needed on
the individual job plan Bill of Material (BOM).
Managing delivery of all the parts is an essential
and frequently a massive job. On a small shutdown you even use a PIM (Personal
Information manager - such as the schedule in Outlook), to remind you when
parts are due. On a typical shutdown the major parts (at least) should be set
up in the schedule as activities so that they are managed along with everything
else. The duration of the activity would equal the lead-time of the part.
Far, far away
In a major city, standard bearings, seals, motors,
drill bits and a wide range of shutdown parts, consumables, supplies and small
tools can be obtained in a few hours. North of the Arctic Circle, in the middle
of the ocean, or on a small island without a large industrial base, the supply
situation is quite different. Without industrial distributors, courier
services, frequent airfreight service, and other supply lines, each purchase
can be a major undertaking. The material management function takes on a much
greater significance when plants are located far from these channels of supply.
The material management plan has to be increasingly bulletproof, accurate and
reliable. International sourcing is another tough area for all shutdowns but
particularly for remote sites. Differences in language, time zone, and
attitude, make business more challenging. Fortunately the Internet is starting
to simplify international sourcing, but the part or supply item still has to
get to your location. Many smaller vendors are still reluctant to do business
overseas, and maintain a parochial point of view.
Master Material List
Consider a master material, spares, and supply list
(you can even add tools and equipment or keep a separate list) of the type:
If the list was kept in a spreadsheet it could be
sorted by date due for follow-up. To follow-up, first check with receiving and
be sure the item has not come in recently. Call the supplier to find out the
status. If the item has been shipped, get the tracking numbers and trace the
shipment. As a last resort, cancel the order and find a new vendor.