What are some common mistakes made with preventive maintenance?

Most people will sing preventive maintenance's (PM) praises - I will too - but that doesn't mean that a PM program is completely foolproof (or immune to general human error). In fact, there's a ton of different mistakes you can make when setting up and running a preventive maintenance schedule.

Planning
Much like the actual maintenance tasks themselves, setting up a PM program requires some intense planning.

This answer might actually surprise some people because CMMS software makes it seem so easy. While a CMMS does help with scheduling and assigning work, it's not a cure-all - it's a tool that complements a solid preventive maintenance plan.

Prior to implementation, organizations need to plan out:

  • The purpose and goals of the PM program
  • Necessary documentation for PM procedures
  • Measuring minimum performance metrics for assets

In the event this is too complicated, a facility can contact someone like a PM manager or consulting firm. Alternatively, some CMMS companies offer migration and planning assistance.

Schedule Compliance
This is a tough one because it's difficult to measure how well or poorly a facility is complying with a schedule. Ultimately, though if PM tasks aren't being performed, there's something wrong.

Schedule compliance is a multifactored issue, so there are a few things you can try to increase adherence to maintenance intervals:

  • Make sure technicians aren't swamped with too much work to handle
  • Check for necessary training and qualifications in technicians
  • Gather employee feedback to check the viability of the schedule

Rollout
One of the most exciting (and potentially scariest) moments in a facility is rolling out the CMMS for the first time. Unfortunately, this is also a time rife with potential issues that can kill a PM program before it even gets off its feet.

A successful rollout depends on a lot of different factors:

  • Necessary training for employees
  • "Dry run" in a controlled area
  • Proper creation of PM tasks in CMMS software
  • Communication at all times between project managers, implementation team, and other employees

Fortunately, there's tons of knowledge about implementing PM programs properly, especially with a solid CMMS behind you.

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