Maintenance optimization is the key to improving industrial operations and the bottom line. A multinational food company needed a framework for continuous improvement and wanted to start developing it in its five Dutch processing plants, acquired in 2014. The APM scan delivered the building blocks for the new framework, which will function as a blueprint for all 65 plants worldwide.
This large food company produces food, feed and fuel ingredients from bionutrients. With operations on several continents, the company recycles all kinds of products into useable and specialty ingredients.
Multiple plants in the Netherlands became the focal point in building a new framework for maintenance. The company saw the great value of optimization. By standardising systems and processes, they want to realise world-class equipment effectiveness and cost leadership through optimum availability and capacity performance. MaxGrip is the maintenance optimization partner for several global food & beverage companies, with a proven ability to translate strategic issues to practical processes on the work floor.
Building the framework started with a close look at the business context and current organisation. The APM scan analyzes the maintenance organisation in 13 competency areas. “We want to create value by aligning the maintenance with the business goals”, says MaxGrip expert Wilco Hekkert. “The APM scan is a cost-effective tool to find out the relative strengths and the areas that will need development. All maintenance-related documentation is discussed with reliability engineers and other maintenance professionals. During the process, there is growing awareness of the many interconnections and the priorities.”
Creating the support base for change can be a challenge. MaxGrip does not present a model to follow, but starts an exchange of views and knowledge in order to jointly raise a maintenance framework that can be built upon. “After the framework was completed at the company, we continued the conversation at each of the locations until everyone recognised how new ways of working will improve the maintenance organisation and save costs at the same time. We are good at connecting people, IT and processes. For good results, validating the process with the management is as important as personal engagement and coaching on the job.”
Outlining the multiple maintenance organisations strategically and operationally was a dynamic process which included external and internal benchmarking. Wilco Hekkert: “We enabled the customer to benchmark by comparing organisational models, maintenance methods and systems, and best practices. We talk about roles, rather than functions. We always try to embed new tools and processes in the organisation by visualizing as much as possible.” Working on clarity and insight on all levels, and providing tailored training for key roles where necessary, MaxGrip creates the conditions, tools and processes for continuous improvement. This company’s maintenance manager: “Now we have a way to operate the necessary levers and develop our maintenance organisation.”