Preventive Maintenance – Software and Strategies Table of Contents

Work Order Software – The Leverage of Planning

How does one measure the leverage of work order planning?

The specific improvement from planning maintenance can be quantified. Consider three persons working without the benefit of planning but placing them at the highest productivity of 35%.

Work Order Software efficiency without planning

Their combined productivity 105% can be thought of as one person always working productively who never has a delay and even has some time left at the end of the day.

Work Order Software Leverage with planning

Now take one of those persons away from the work force and make that person into a planner. The planner helps boost the productivity of the remaining two persons up to 55% each. The planner’s productivity is considered to be 0%. The combined productivity is now 110% a little better than all of them working without planning. It has also been shown that a single planner can plan for 20 to 30 persons.

Consequently, there never should be any question that a person should be taken out of the work force to become a planner. This concept is a big problem for many companies. They also fail to provide enough planners for one of two reasons. One, they might select one planner for a group of 50 mechanics, a serious under investment. Two, they select two planners, but then dump extra duties on them preventing them from the work of real planning.

Work Order Software Leverage with Planner

A 30 person maintenance force is leveraged as 30 persons times (see the box below) 1.57 to yield a 47 person effective work force. Instead of 30 persons working at 35% productivity each, the work force has the equivalence of 47 persons working at 35% each.

This means that one is obtaining the effect of having 17 extra persons on the team without having to hire anyone new; 17 persons for the cost of one planner!

What can we expect to gain?

Work Order Software gain with planning

Additionally, seventeen persons at $25 per hour including benefits are worth $884,000 a year.

What do these extra persons or really “new found production hours” do? In the company with much reactive work, one uses them to put out all the fires. In the company with reactive work under control that is focusing on planned work, one leverages them to do more proactive work avoiding fires.

Finally in companies with preventive maintenance well in hand, one leverages them to invest in training to increase their skills and in projects to improve equipment or other work processes. Each of these companies has the ability to grow or allow natural attrition without hiring.

Work Order Software Actual Gains from CMMS

The above cases are dramatically improved if you are starting at 25% wrench time and moving to 55%, which is 55 divided by 25, which is equal to a 2.2 factor of improvement. The 30-person work force is increased to 66 persons.

The effect the 36 additional persons are worth $1,872,000 annually. While the measure and value of the extra productivity can be calculated rather easily in terms of work force, how one uses this extra labor is what matters. Getting more work done and done right leads to other significant savings that are easy to calculate.

Work Order Software Cost Reduction from Additional Production

Moreover, the aspects of planning must be understood in the context of a system in order to avoid the frustrations of many companies that have tried planning without success.

– Have a System – Manual or CMMS
– Work at Reducing Delays
– Have Parts, Tools and Manuals Ready
– Keep Track of Time Wasting Delays and look for improvements

To better understand the aspects of how the planning system works and the principles and techniques that make dramatic leverage possible in any maintenance program I would suggest obtaining a copy of the “Maintenance Planning and Scheduling Handbook” by Richard Palmer from where much of the previous data was obtained. In addition, I would like to briefly broach the subject of justification for a CMMS (computerized maintenance management software).

Preventive Maintenance – Software and Strategies Table of Contents


Work Order Software  –   CMMS Benefits