Maintainer of the Future
It has always been my belief that we can learn from everyone around us, and this particularly applies to the asset management world. After all maintenance is maintenance and the principles and observations from one industry can apply to another. With this in mind I would like to point out to you a paper from the University of Australia http://www.crcmining.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/CRCMining-Maintainer-of-the-Future-White-Paper.pdf a CRC Mining White paper on the maintainer of the future.
What struck me as I read it, is if you removed Australia and the obvious references to specific mining aspects, was how applicable to other industries the paper was.
- Dealing with safety and cost pressures.
Seeing if exposures to hazards could be eliminated or reduced.
- Increasing the use of sensors to open the doors to proactive maintenance
- Assuring the competence of the worker. How can an employer assure themselves that an employee or contractor demonstrate appropriate behavior and technical competency
- The digitalization of maintenance. The need to be ale to use computers and use digital interfaces to access equipment status
I also was struck by the way the authors believe that the future maintenance worker will go from being a single role to one that is a multirole – first responders, equipment care technicians, diagnosticians, and specialists. Very much how the medical communities treat people, going through a hierarchy of skilled people to resolve the problems efficiently.
Additionally I think the idea that there should be some way of taking non credited company focused training and transforming these learnt skills to a nationally recognized set of qualifications is tremendous. After all when (for what ever reason you leave your company) how do you prove to your prospective employers that you have all these company on the job learnt skills. When I was changing jobs It would have been very useful to me and my employers if I had some recognized certificate that proved I had the skills that I said I did.
For those of you who are looking at sensors in maintenance the authors believe that utilizing the sensor data will result in less reactive work and an increased emphasis on the controlled execution of planned work. And that the maintainer will be more involved in diagnostic work (which will require increased or additional training).
In all I think that there are a lot of ideas in this paper that could be used to improve maintenance and safety in the chemical industry if we started to translate some of the concepts into our industry.