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Down–Time – the 7 Heads Monster!  

Among the many questions that we receive in emails, one subject seems to be today the strongest of all concerns of the Manufacturing Industry managers:  


There are multiple effects of down time and them all cause detrimental situations all over the enterprise. 

1.      The Plant becomes unreliable  

2.      Operation is affected plant-wide 

3.      The associates receive the wrong message “it is OK to fail” 

4.      Maintenance technicians perform worse under pressure  

5.      Deliveries are not complied with 

6.      Quality (especially in perishables) can be affected 

7.      Costs go up – while Profits go down 

… And a few others 

Definitely: down time is bad for business 

Many companies have lived so many years in “emergency mode” that no longer notice these and other effects caused by down time. “Run to Break” Operations and Maintenance is by far the costliest and unfortunately too popular way to manufacture anything. One of the main responsibilities for Maintenance and everyone else is to prevent unscheduled stoppages of the plant. In order to achieve this, more awareness must be brought up in every associate, whatever their job or “hierarchy” might be. All jobs descriptions should have a line referring to the responsibility of “immediately reporting to Maintenance any abnormality that you observe.” 

Of course, in order to reach that, hundreds of hours need to be devoted to training. Actually everyone in a World Class enterprise should eventually be transformed into a trainer and coach. Sharing knowledge, experiences, and information must be considered a need for everyone to contribute in this great cause. If everyone becomes a trainer then we have a full time training environment. Now, if we think about it, when we are learning something we are (or should be anyway), having fun. It is fun to learn new stuff all the time. Training needs to be seen as an attractive opportunity, never an obligation for anyone. 

Down Time must be seen as the enormous enemy it really is. Everyone needs to apply creativity, imagination, and the best will to stop down time on its tracks. We all can do more each day to spread this concept. This way we all will be a formidable force against down-time. 


 The Globe is Flat!