Reliability-centred maintenance : identification of management and organisational aspects when introducing RCM

Abstract: Increased demands on productivity, quality and cost-efficiency affecting manufacturing trends towards increased complexity and higher degree of process automation. A major break down in such a manufacturing system may generate severe damage on productivity, environment and personnel. Using risk assessment to identify serve risks within a plant, in combination with different maintenance strategies, is one course of action to prioritising maintenance activities needed. A methodology for executing a so-called risk-based maintenance is reliability-centred maintenance, RCM. There are several benefits generated from RCM, for example, improved safety and maintenance cost-effectiveness. Though, several companies have problems to make it work. The problems that occur are many times within management and organisational (M&O) aspects, such as lack of communication and management support. Some M&O aspects of importance when introducing improvement methods as TQM and TPM are similar with the ones valid for RCM. Though, differences seem to depend on the use of RCM in a more technology environment, overshadow the affects M&O aspects really bring about when introducing it. That is probably the main reason why obstacles occur when introducing RCM. A structured step model has been developed, focusing on the preparation and planning activities when introducing RCM.