• 1. Production department pressures can sometimes overwhelm maintenance people to the point where other departments may be ignored. In this instance, such actions would ultimately have resulted in production losses. An assessment of the overall impact can drive an apparently unimportant problem up the criticality ranks. Such overviews can be crucial.
  • 2. Ideas are not the prerogatives of qualified engineers or managers.

Often, the best ones come from the shop floor, so we have to listen to the workers!

  • 3. Analysis, using factual data, a receptive mind, and common sense can produce results that may compare with those of experts with knowledge of theory (see Appendix 43-A).
  • 4. Credibility of the maintenance department is valuable currency—hard to earn and easy to lose. Solving tricky problems that have vexed people for some time is one way to build credibility.


One of the pleasures of working as maintainers is the opportunity it gives us to apply innovative ideas. It offers fertile soil to sow creativity and reap the fruits of significant business benefits.

If maintainers understand basic reliability engineering concepts, they can apply it to their advantage in their work.

Additional Reading

  • 1. Hoyland, A. and M.Rausand. 1994. System Reliability Theory. 18-72. New York: John Wiley and Sons, Inc. ISBN: 0471593974
  • 2. Davidson, J. 1994. The Reliability of Mechanical Systems. 22-33. London: Mechanical Engineering Publications, Ltd. ISBN 0852988818.
  • 3. Narayan, V. 2004, Effective Maintenance Management: Risk and Reliability; Strategies for Optimizing Performance. Chapter 3. New York: Industrial Press Inc. ISBN 0-8311-3178-0.
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