Posted by: productivityinc | August 17, 2012

Daily Maintenance

The other day I was driving my truck when all of the sudden it began to spit and sputter, finally coming to a halt.  Being stranded on the freeway left me few options, so I called the dealer to have them send a tow.  Once we arrived at the dealership I was met by a mechanic who immediately began diagnosing the problem. After only a few minutes, he returned with a dumb founded look on his face and said, “There’s nothing wrong with this truck, it’s just out of gas”. I replied to him “well, fill it up and let me get on my way” so he did.  When all was said and done, it was the most expensive gas I’d ever purchased; $125 (the hourly minimum) for his diagnosis, $200 for the tow, and $100 for the gas.  Sound ridiculous? You bet! Fortunately for me this story lacks a little truth. But the following scenario is all too real.

Ask yourself, have you ever had a machine break down, only to have the highly paid, highly skilled employee (the skilled trades) come to the machine and use a rag to wipe contamination from a sensor or photo eye to get the machine back up? As with the story of my truck, the same holds true in the production machine story….The operator has a role to play in the daily maintenance of their equipment. If your mechanics are spending time cleaning parts of the machine that should already be clean during normal housekeeping, then your maintenance system is lacking the essential pillar of Autonomous Maintenance which at the heart has operator involvement.

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