Building Maintenance Excellence with a Culture of Flexibility in Belgium

A chemical site in Belgium wanted to assess their current needs and identify areas in which they could cut costs. T.A. Cook was asked to perform a full maintenance review to find this information. Following a three week analysis, a variety of improvement opportunities were revealed. Here are the key results:


Proper planning and scheduling processes established and lost time reduced

Client Staff

Unprecedented client staff buy-in; process adherence ensured


Recurrent problems with most costly equipment bad actors resolve


Fully-functional PMS installed including KPIs and review meetings


The evaluation determined that reactive work patterns were leading to lost time there was insufficient equipment to carry out preventive maintenance. The maintenance department also lacked proper maintenance planning and resource allocation stemming from an absence of prioritization. To combat these issues, T.A. Cook worked with the client to implement a fully reliable maintenance management system. This included implementing a new Work Order Management (WOM) and a Performance Management System (PMS), both supported by improved organizational practices. Overall, the project’s goal was to create an anticipatory culture at the site in which the team can make predictions and optimize resources while still being able to answer realtime urgency calls from production.

Reaching a consensus with stakeholders in order to implement new processes was a key challenge. To overcome this, T.A. Cook worked from the bottom-up, involving personnel in every change process department. This helped secure overall company “buy-in” and led to productive change. Next, equipment repair requirements were monitored and analyzed to identify recurring problem areas. This enabled the staff to anticipate upcoming repairs, rather than waiting for problems to occur. By working closely together, T.A. Cook and the chemical site’s maintenance staff defined new rules for notification gate-keeping and WOM prioritization. More optimal execution of work orders followed due to good preparation, proper scheduling and active supervision – all which allowed overtime to be reduced and costs to be better controlled. Finally, the most important functions and improvement requirements within the maintenance operation were identified, which allowed for the clarification of roles, responsibilities and performance management as well as Key Performance Indicators (KPI).


Once preparation and scheduling techniques were improved, supervision became more active, roles and responsibilities were clarified and a fully functional PMS was installed, overall annual maintenance costs were reduced by 10%. Furthermore, the bottom-up approach led to an unprecedented level of buy-in to new processes, which ensured the adoption and adherence among staff.

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