Explaining scheduled maintenance

Scheduled maintenance is any maintenance that is arranged to be done ahead of time and within a predetermined period. It can either be a recurring task done at regular time intervals or a one-time task. Scheduled maintenance includes inspections, adjustments, regular service, and planned shutdowns.

An example of scheduled maintenance occuring at repeating intervals is changing a bearing on a conveyor belt every 30 days or inspecting the condition of a motor every 90 days. Scheduled maintenance can also take the form of a one-time work order. If a problem with an asset or part is identified, a time is scheduled to check and repair the asset.

The primary goals of scheduled maintenance are to reduce reactive maintenance, equipment failure, and maintenance backlog. Standard checks help increase the lifetime of assets and reduce the number of equipment repairs and replacements. Scheduling tasks also allows you to better allocate resources in a cost-effective and efficient manner.

What is the difference between scheduled maintenance and planned maintenance?

While scheduled maintenance and planned maintenance are often used interchangeably, there are differences between the two.

Planned maintenance is the act of anticipating maintenance work and implementing a process for completing this work. This includes everything from how to identify a task, to required materials and workflows, prioritization, and procedures for analyzing completed tasks. Planned maintenance comes in all shapes and sizes, including reactive maintenance, preventive maintenance, condition-based maintenance, and predictive maintenance. As long as there is a plan in place to address a situation, whether it’s running a lightbulb until it fails or lubricating a motor on a bi-weekly basis, it is planned maintenance.

Scheduled maintenance is the act of deciding when planned maintenance tasks should be completed and who should complete them. While planned maintenance establishes a process, scheduled maintenance is part of that process. When an issue or task is identified, it can be given a deadline for completion and assigned to a technician. This is when it becomes scheduled maintenance.

What is scheduled maintenance critical percent?

In a perfect world, maintenance is scheduled, a deadline is set, and tasks are done on time. But we don’t live in a perfect world — maintenance is overdue sometimes. When this happens, it can be hard to sort out which tasks should take priority and which can wait.

Scheduled maintenance critical percent is a tool to organize your recurring scheduled maintenance tasks (PMs). When several of these PMs are overdue, calculating SMCP helps you determine which one should be done first. It does this by calculating how late your PMs are in relation to how often they should be occurring. The higher the percentage, the higher that PM should be prioritized.

How to calculate SMCP

The formula for scheduled maintenance critical percent starts by adding the number of days a PM is late and the number of days in the PM’s cycle. This number is divided by the number of days in the PM’s cycle and multiplied by 100.

Scheduled maintenance critical percent = (# of days late + # of days in the PM cycle) ÷ # of days in the PM cycle x 100

SCMP formula

For example, let’s say you have two overdue scheduled maintenance tasks on identical systems. One is a PM that is supposed to be done every 30 days, but is three days late (PM #1). The other is a PM that is supposed to be done every 90 days, but is five days late (PM #2). The SMCP calculation determines which task is more critical.

PM #1: (3+30) ÷ 30 x 100 = 110%

PM #2: (5+90) ÷ 90 x 100 = 105%

In this situation, the PM that is three days late has a higher critical percentage and, therefore, should be completed before the PM that is five days late.

How is SMCP used?

Overdue maintenance can cost your facility money and uptime. Calculating SMCP is a way to mitigate these costs and use resources more effectively. SMCP is used to organize overdue tasks by the impact they have on the organization. The higher the percentage, the bigger the risk associated with that overdue task. By targeting the most important work, inefficiencies and lost production can be systematically eliminated from the shop floor.

What does SMCP mean for maintenance?

There are three main benefits of tracking scheduled maintenance critical percent for the maintenance team.

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Better scheduling

Knowing which work orders have the biggest impact on your facility allows you to schedule them more effectively. These tasks can be prioritized in your maintenance software system and labour can be allocated accordingly. For example, if the SMCP is high, the task can move up your to-do list so it’s not waiting behind three or four other tasks. You can also decide to put several technicians and more resources into a job if the SMCP is high.

Breakdown is the most likely trigger for maintenance. If the asset is required and not working, then maintenance will be required.

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Less reactive maintenance

The chances of missing more than one PM cycle is greater when a PM is done more frequently. The more PM cycles that are missed, the more prone an asset is to sudden failure. SMCP is one method of quantifying this likelihood of unplanned, reactive maintenance. You can take steps to remedy the problem and get your PMs back on track to avoid the potential for unexpected failure.

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Easier audits

Overdue maintenance leads to all kinds of compliance issues and failed audits. Tracking SMCP keeps backlog top-of-mind and highlights urgent health and safety tasks. These overdue, but crucial tasks can be identified and taken care of before they fall off the radar and cause problems for your auditing process. Consistently overdue tasks can also be spotted and steps can be taken to address the root causes.

Your business and SMCP

Scheduled maintenance critical percent is a tool for prioritizing overdue work with the goal of reducing unnecessary costs and downtime. It also be used as a way to target constantly overdue tasks, examine why that is, and figure out a solution. SMCP is a foundational maintenance metrics that can help your operation elevate its maintenance strategies and work from a reactive facility to one that maximizes the potential of preventive maintenance.

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