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Owens-Illinois needed a CMMS that would capture equipment history and provide accurate data for planning preventive and predictive maintenance.


Products: PMC | Market: Manufacturing | Printable Version: Click here

Owens-Illinois, Inc. (NYSE: OI) has a rich heritage of technological leadership dating back to the turn of the century when Michael J. Owens developed the first automatic glass bottle-making machine.


Today, Owens-Illinois prides itself in having dedicated people delivering total package solutions. In its annual report, Joseph H. Lemieux, chairman and chief executive officer, offers “special recognition to the people of Owens-Illinois for their outstanding contribution. It is through their efforts that we have earned the recognition of blue-chip customers around the world as their everyday source of packaging solutions.”


The Challenge: A Best Practice CMMS


The Plastic Closure Division was already running DPSI’s PMC software, one of the most widely-used and successful computerized maintenance management systems (CMMS) in the world. But Owens-Illinois is always looking to its employees for ideas to increase productivity.


Jared Asher, plant administrator for the Plastic Closure Division, is an example of the leadership and innovation shown by Owens-Illinois employees. An effective and results-oriented manager, Asher was not content to simply continue running PMC. “A team was assembled and tasked to come up with a streamlined, even easier-to-use add-on that would encourage more maintenance technicians to use the system more frequently,” explains Asher.


“We wanted a best-practices solution that could capture all equipment history and provide accurate data to be used for planning preventive maintenance and, potentially, predictive maintenance. Ideally, it would capture all of the actions in PMC throughout the shift while attaching the comments to a work order and downloading the information into an e-mail report for distribution.”


The Solution: PMC Plus MT-Track


The result was MT-Track, a database add-on to PMC. “PMC is written in Microsoft Access, making it easy to modify to meet the different business processes of our customers,” says Delores Gatz, vice president of product management for DPSI.


“MT-Track was designed to track parts usage and generate two reports,” says Asher. “First, a daily report of the difference between emergency and preventative actions, and second, an end-of-shift report to tell the next shift what has been done.” Combined with PMC, it proved to become a best-practices solution: a higher performance way to achieve the division’s objectives of solving problems, creating opportunities and improving productivity.


“Maintenance still has to log in using the same PMC Securities, but they can just pull information from the ‘asset’ and ‘work order’ tables.” Asher explains. “They don’t have to open ‘purchasing,’ ‘parts,’ and so on. This makes it more efficient for entering data and doing searches. Plus, the interface uses all pull-down menus, making it even more user friendly for our maintenance technicians to use.”


“Preventive maintenance is supposed to reduce the need for emergency maintenance,” Asher says “But you will have emergencies anyway. You want to be able to track information as it happens. We have terminals located on the production line that can track downtime, parts used, who worked on it, what they did, and hours spent.” In fact, the Plastic Closure division has reported a decrease in costly repairs and emergency breakdowns.


“If we have more than one part going bad, we want to track that and see if there’s a trend,” continues Asher. “Our technicians can pull up the asset and see how often a bearing went out on that piece of equipment over the past six months. They can analyze that and fix it before it causes ancillary, more expensive damage. Engineering gets more involved. The bottom line is more uptime for the Plastic Closure Division. “


“We see a real benefit from taking full advantage of the PMC product. It takes a little extra effort to enter all the data, but it’s worth the extra keystrokes. It pays for itself a hundred-fold,” says Asher.


The Future: Expansion to Other Plants


Asher currently administers PMC for nine plants in the Plastic Closure Division. Since his plants use PMC, he is able to link plants together, copy and share information and parts. “If a plant in one location has the same piece of equipment as another that is having a problem, we can see if that plant has an extra part in inventory and avoid downtime,” says Asher.


Asher’s best-practices solution has been so effective that the company plans to roll out PMC and MT-Track to other plants in his division. For Owens-Illinois, it’s further proof that employee innovation is the key to success.

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