A study of maintenance performance indicators for the Swedish railroad system

University dissertation from Luleå : Luleå tekniska universitet

Abstract: The Swedish railway authorities have a long tradition of using performance indicators to follow up their performance. Already in 1915 when they decided to electrify the iron ore line between Kiruna and Riksgränsen, they introduced some indicators to measure and follow up expected benefits of upgrading the transportation system, e.g. total amount and costs per transported iron ore tonnage, employee safety training, and accidents or near-accidents related to the new power source of electricity. Today, one of the requirements on the infrastructure management is to achieve cost-effective maintenance activities and a punctual and cost-effective railroad transportation system. For this, cost-effective maintenance processes are necessary to achieve budget targets, while punctual railroad system is required by different stakeholders. One key issue for Banverket is to verify that undertaken maintenance activities have given expected results, measured in terms of technical, economically, and organizational indicators. The purpose of this thesis is to identify and develop a set of performance indicators that supports the maintenance decision-making process in proportion to punctuality, safety, environmental impact and profitability; i.e. establishing a link and effect model. The main aim is to clarify how different maintenance performance indicators can be used to make optimal decisions in the maintenance process; show and illustrate present status of the infrastructure as well as predict the future condition based upon today's maintenance decisions. The analysis of existing and potential maintenance performance indicators resulted in a useful set of indicators applicable for railway infrastructure assets management, classified into different classes and subgroups appropriate to match a modified link and effect model originally developed for the offshore industry. A link and effect model adjusted to management of railway infrastructure assets is also presented. In order to successfully implement performance indicators it is important to start with the definition of the business goals and overall objectives that later on must be broken down to maintenance objectives. With clear objectives regarding punctuality, safety, environmental impact, and profitability, is it possible to develop and implement indicators, especially performance driver indicators, for a maintenance department or maintenance contract.

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