Maintenance Cost Reduction at Global Polypropylene Manufacturer

A global film and packaging manufacturer had trouble with ballooning maintenance costs. They hoped to reduce overall expenditure in the department by 20%. The site approached T.A. Cook to identify key areas of improvement to achieve lean maintenance. Here are the key results:


FTE savings achieved in 10 weeks


Reactive work reduced from 90% to 20%


Improvement in equipment uptime


Overtime reduced from 30 to nine minutes


An analysis identified a number of key areas for improvements. There was an overall lack of organization at both shop floor & management level of the maintenance department. There was no adequate preparation for repair work, which resulted in scheduling problems. There was insufficient break management and coordination, which led to overtime growth. Finally, productivity was low during maintenance work order execution, resulting in 55% lost time. Further investigation also showed that the maintenance organization rested upon an opaque management culture, impacting proper and timely decision-making. Due to this deficiency, coordinating maintenance work and controlling downtime were persistent problems.

To solve this mismanagement, a Management Control and Reporting System (MCRS) was implemented to measure progress and performance, safeguarding that maintenance would be planned and scheduled according to priority. To ensure adequate preparation and management of work, the client and T.A. Cook worked together to organize the separation of project and routine maintenance. The partnership defined break and shift start / end times. As resource requirements were clarified beforehand, staff became more punctual. Guidelines for work order prioritization procedures were created. Finally, a gatekeeping process was installed to ensure that the production and maintenance teams would use established standardized notification and execution processes.


With the change in management practices and new preventative measures implemented into the maintenance department, equipment uptime improved by 7% while reactive work was reduced from 90% to 20%. Overtime due to inadequately prepared technicians was reduced from 30 minutes to nine minutes in 10 weeks, signifying a 3.5% FTE savings.

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