Computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) is a software that stores information regarding an organization’s maintenance operations in order to enhance the efficiency of processes and equipment. It can also be used to store records and generate records as proof of regularity compliance. CMMS is commonly used with total productive maintenance (TPM) systems. TPM is a system for executing maintenance tasks in order to prevent equipment breakdowns, increase availability, and reduce losses.
CMMS supports all the 8 pillars of TPM that include autonomous maintenance, maintenance improvement, focused improvement, education and training, quality management, early equipment management, safety, healthy, and environment, and administrative and office TPM. Surveys have shown that TPM is an effective strategy in improving productivity and reducing maintenance costs. Moreover, when it is used with a CMMS, the costs incurred due to equipment downtime are eliminated.
A computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) is computer software, specifically designed to collect information about an organization’s maintenance processes in order to help employees work effectively. Examples of the components of a CMMS include equipment data management, labor, inventory control, asset tracking, preventive maintenance, and budgeting among others. The software is widely used by companies because it reduces equipment downtime, increases productivity, lowers maintenance costs, generates custom reports, and improves inventory management. CMMS is widely used in total productive management (TPM). TPM refers to a system used by industries to keep their equipment in optimal working conditions so as increase their availability, prevent breakdowns, and avoid delays. CMMS is applied in TPM because of its capability to improve productivity and reduce maintenance costs.
Computerized Maintenance Management System (CMMS)
As mentioned earlier, CMMS is computer software used to store information regarding an organization’s maintenance operations for enhanced efficiency through the application of its numerous functionalities. The information allows maintenance workers to execute their jobs more effectively and helps management teams to make better decisions (Duffuaa and Raouf, p. 224). In addition, the information can be used to authenticate regulatory compliance and analyze organizational processes. Many organizations use CMMS to facilitate the storage of records and monitor the completion of tasks (Duffuaa and Raouf, p. 225). In contemporary business stings, many companies use the software package to execute maintenance management operations.
A CMMS is a beneficial organizational application because of its numerous functionalities that serve different roles. It has gained widespread application because it can be used in any setting that has equipment that needs repair and maintenance. Increased technological innovation and competition in business contexts have led to CMMS’s increased application. Examples of common CMMS components that have varied uses include work order system, equipment data management, predictive and preventive management, asset tracking, labor, inventory control, and scheduling.
CMMSs have several benefits that have contributed to their increasing popularity among organizations. They reduce equipment downtime, increase the life of equipment, lower maintenance costs, enhance work order management, increase productivity, and generate custom reports (Sapp). In addition, they schedule preventive maintenance, enhance decision-making through the supply of data, meet compliance and safety standards, and enhance inventory management (Duffuaa and Raouf, p. 227). It makes work easier by identifying and managing the various tasks to be executed in the maintenance process and provides repair history for enhanced maintenance management (Sapp). The software collects and evaluates the information generated by all the workers involved in the maintenance of specific equipment and store it for future uses.
Application in TPM
A CMMS is a key component of a successful TPM project because of its functionalities that support universal maintenance goals. It facilitates the attainment of optimal performance, improves the longevity and safety of the production process, and automates ongoing monitoring of maintenance activities (Duffuaa and Raouf, p. 229). Their application in TPM projects is based on its ability to store asset data, work order history, information on outsourced repair services, and analyzes data to determine the equipment that needs servicing. The software can also identify problem areas and determine a TPM’s degree of effectiveness for a given facility (Sapp). Therefore, organizations should consider using CMMS as the software package of choice to carry out operations management, planning and analysis in their TPM program.
Total Productive Maintenance (TPM)
Total productive maintenance refers to a system used by organizations to perform maintenance operations on assets in order to improve their availability, performance, and durability. Its major benefits include the avoidance of breakdowns, the elimination of delays in core processes, increased equipment availability, and the better asset performance (Diaz-Reza et al, p. 45).
TPM differs from other maintenance strategies because its implementation includes the operation and maintenance of equipment by the same individual. The system is applicable in a wide range of industries. However, it is most famous in manufacturing because of its distinctive style of equipment maintenance. Overall equipment effectiveness (OEE) is one of the factors that endear the system to manufacturers.
The implementation of TPM in an organization is aimed at attaining several objectives. These include improving the quality of products, eliminating wastes in production processes, improving the safety and health of work environments, and reducing accidents (Diaz-Reza et al, p. 45). Moreover, it aims to achieve a proactive approach to the maintenance of equipment and increasing uptime by incorporating all employees within the organization in maintenance operations.
Components of TPM and the Application of CMMS
TPM comprises two main components, namely the 5S methodology and the 8 pillars. Each of these represents an activity that needs to be executed in order to attain the aforementioned objectives of TPM. The successful implementation of a TPM begins with the creation of a safe work environment that is built upon the 5S methodology. It is important to create a clean and organized work environment through the establishment of rules for operating various equipment.
The methodology includes five operations: sort, set in order, shine, standardize, and sustain. Sorting involves the identification of important items and the elimination of unnecessary ones. The unwanted materials create obstacles and disturbances that prevent works from executing their duties effectively. Setting in order involves organizing workspaces by placing tools and equipment in designated locations (Diaz-Reza et al, p. 45). Shining involves cleaning and inspecting the workplace in order to make it safe and conducive for work. (Christiansen).
Standardizing includes the establishment of rules that are applied in the aforementioned steps. Sustaining involves the regular application of established standards in areas like training and auditing. TPM has eight major pillars that serve varied functions. They include autonomous maintenance, maintenance improvement, training and skills improvement, focused improvement, early equipment management, quality maintenance, environment, health, and safety, and office TPM (Christiansen). Each of these pillars is supported by CMMS application, thus creating a system that facilitates the attainment of organizational goals.
Autonomous Maintenance (AM)
This is a cultural change that involves the transfer of maintenance responsibilities from an organization’s maintenance workers to machine operators. Examples of these responsibilities include lubrication, daily inspection, and cleaning (Christiansen). Serious problems that are beyond the capabilities of the operators are reported to the management so that the maintenance personnel can address them in a timely manner (Diaz-Reza et al, p. 57).
This pillar allows technicians to focus their attention on more demanding maintenance issues within the organization. The execution of autonomous maintenance with a CMMS improves two areas: activity logging and work order management (Duffuaa and Raouf, p. 224). The operators can request work on a machine easily, receive timely responses, and monitor the process. Machine operators can use the software to report faults that are beyond their capabilities.
Maintenance Improvement (MI)
This pillar facilitates an organization’s shift from reactive to proactive maintenance. In that regard, maintenance departments can analyze equipment failure formation in order to establish the causes and mode of breakdown (Christiansen). Maintenance personnel can use the information to modify processes or equipment in order to enhance their dependability (Diaz-Reza et al, p. 58).
CMMS functionalities that support MI include preventive and predictive maintenance and reporting. Using the software, the maintenance department can analyze information on past repairs so as to determine how machines fail and the frequency of repair need to avoid failures (Duffuaa and Raouf, p. 234). The data can then be applied to develop maintenance plans so that potential failures can be prevented (Sapp). Organizations can also use CMMMs to alert technicians and the management about a potential problem that could cause a machine breakdown.
Education and Training (ET)
This pillar ensures that maintenance personnel possesses the knowledge and skills necessary for the execution of repair activities. Employees should be conversant with the process of performing minor maintenance repairs and inspections, as well as the use of the TPM system (Diaz-Reza et al, p. 61). This pillar empowers employees to perform tasks independently and effectively in order to minimize downtime. A CMMS can be used to keep employee profiles detailing the skills that each worker possesses as well as areas in which they need help (Duffuaa and Raouf, p. 224). Moreover, it can be used to create detailed instructions on maintenance protocols for assets under the TPM program.
Focused Improvement (FI)
This pillar aims to identify and eliminate the major losses that are encountered in organizational processes so as to enhance their speed, quality, and efficiency. The main goal of FI is to eliminate production defects, low speeds, equipment breakdown, set up and adjustments, idling and unimportant stops, and startup losses (Christiansen). The successful implementation of this pillar facilitates the creation of multi-talented teams that ensure that losses are minimized and production processes run smoothly. CMMS is capable of conducting data analysis from stored data on the historical performance of various assets (Duffuaa and Raouf 224). In that regard, operators can identify the weaknesses of processes and implement new strategies to avoid future failures.
Quality Management (QM)
The main goal of this pillar is to maintain optimal product yield by ensuring that every equipment functions at maximum capacity. This is achieved by regular checkups that determine an equipment’s output quality and operating condition (Christiansen). The elimination of waste and defects from manufacturing processes is one of the outcomes of a proper quality management strategy (Diaz-Reza et al, p. 65). The main tasks executed by maintenance personnel is the elimination of defects that lower the quality of products and that slow down the production process. CMMS helps with the execution of quality management by facilitating predictive and preventive maintenance (Duffuaa and Raouf, p. 224). Workers can use the software to detect possible causes of failure through the use of manual spot checks or sensors (Sapp). A CMMS can be used to alert maintenance personnel about maintenance tasks that are done regularly when they are due.
Early Equipment Management (EEM)
EEM’s main objective is the design, configuration, and manufacture of equipment without common failures that an organization experience. This pillar ensures that companies use reliable equipment that produces high-quality products (Diaz-Reza et al, p. 70). The elimination of commonly encountered failures is a critical aspect of EEM. CMMS supports early equipment management by facilitating the processes of reporting and work order management (Duffuaa and Raouf, p. 224). Manufacturers of certain equipment can be given a list of common failures to address (Sapp). In addition, a log of the repair history of machines can help equipment suppliers correct common defects that cause breakdowns.
Safety, Health, and Environment (SHE)
The creation of a safe working environment is a key component of TPM. Safety is one of the requirements that should be observed during the execution of the other pillars. Activities such as inspections and the use of personal protective equipment can improve the safety of workers and equipment (Diaz-Reza et al, p. 74). CMMS supports SHE through safety planning, general safety recording, and offering proof of inspections (Duffuaa and Raouf, p.224). The software allows users to create safety plans, produce records of routine inspections to prove compliance, manage inspections and employee certifications, and store safety-related records.
Administrative and Office TPM (AO)
Wastes are not present only in plants but also in administrative functions. Minimizing or eradicating these losses can have a positive effect on certain organizational processes. This pillar aims to improve administrative functions in order to reduce losses caused by equipment breakdown and poor communication (Diaz-Reza et al, p. 76). Inventory and document management are CMMS capabilities that support this TPM pillar (Duffuaa and Raouf, p. 224). Organizations can use the software to manage supplies and orders in order to eliminate clutter and increase order. They can also use it to store documents for easy retrieval.
One of the main goals of an organization is the elimination of accidents and downtime due to machine breakdowns. This objective is difficult to achieve, but it can be attained through the implementation of total productive maintenance (TPM) strategy with the help of a computerized maintenance management system (CMMS). A TPM is a system that organizations use to execute maintenance operations while a CMMS is software used to store information regarding a firm’s maintenance operations. The two applications are widely used together to improve the efficiency of organizations in different ways. TPM has eight pillars that include autonomous maintenance, maintenance improvement, focused improvement, education and training, quality management, early equipment management, safety, healthy, and environment, and administrative and office TPM.
These pillars are supported by CMMS through its various functionalities that serve specific functions. The use of these packages has allowed organizations to improve the quality of products, eliminate wastes in production processes, improve the safety and health of work environments, and reduce accidents. Other benefits include the reduction of manufacturing and maintenance costs, the elimination of equipment breakdown, and the reduction of process delays and downtime.
- Christiansen, Bryan. (2018). “Implementing Total Productive Maintenance with the Help of A CMMS.” LimbleCMMS, 2018. Web.
- Diaz-Reza, Jose Roberto, Garcia-Alcaraz, Jorge Luis, and Valeria Martinez-Loya. Impact Analysis of Total Productive Maintenance: Critical Success Factors and Benefits. Springer, 2018.
- Duffuaa, Salih, and Abdul Raouf. Planning and Control of Maintenance Systems: Modelling and Analysis. 2nd ed., Springer, 2015. (CMMS 224-242).
- Sapp, Don. (2016). “Computerized Maintenance Management Systems (CMMS)”. Whole Building Design Guide, 2016. Web.