The containment measures put in place to deal with the coronavirus epidemic have serious consequences for industrial activity. In this context of health crisis, CMMS is more than ever an essential tool to ensure the maintenance of equipment that is still working and of those that are shut down.
The consequences of containment on industrial activity
Containment has a considerable impact on industrial activity in the countries where it is implemented, causing production to stop in some sectors, or maintaining - or even increasing - activity in others, under particular conditions, often with a reduced workforce.
Production shut down in many plants
The containment measures introduced in most European countries have led to the shutdown of production in many plants. A large number of major industrial groups in all sectors have been affected: Michelin, Airbus, Chantiers de l’Atlantique, Hermès, the Baccarat crystal factory, etc. Examples abound.
The automotive industry, already seriously affected by the drop in production by its Chinese subcontractors, was one of the hardest hit: Fiat Chrysler closed their eight sites in Europe, Renault suspended its activities in Spain and France, PSA closed all of its production sites in Europe, to name only a few.
Suppliers to the major plants were also affected and had to suspend production. As a result, one after the other, factories around the world began to stop their production.
Essential businesses maintain their activities
Even in these times of sanitary crisis, some industries have maintained their activities as they are considered vital for the proper functioning of the global economy. This is the case, for example, for fuel suppliers for power plants, for power plants themselves, drug production plants, drinking water distribution, waste collection and treatment, etc.
The health crisis, an opportunity to improve maintenance management
The period of containment and the consequent strong economic downturn may be an opportunity for some companies to improve their maintenance management.
Will the sanitary crisis be an opportunity for maintenance?
In the plants that have stopped production, the health crisis can be used as an opportunity to carry out maintenance activities that are impossible in normal times. In South Africa, for example, the national power company is taking advantage of a significant drop in energy demand to shut down several plants. It can in fact postpone the load shedding induced by its maintenance plan. In a statement, officials said they are focusing “on carrying out short-term maintenance and other repairs to optimize the power generation units that will meet demand when it increases after containment”.
Airlines, for their part, are carrying out full maintenance on their entire fleets at a time when air traffic is being drastically reduced.
Adopting CMMS software during the sanitary crisis
In this time of containment, some plants, under shutdown conditions or with reduced activities, may consider deploying a CMMS software such as Mobility Work. Maintenance managers have the time and availability needed to implement a new solution that will enable them to improve the productivity of their production lines when they restart.
Although the installation of the Mobility Work application is quick and easy, this is a good opportunity to implement it without any impact on the production process. The maintenance teams can add QR codes on their machines to make the best of Mobility Work and import the equipment into the application. They can also take the time to discover all the advanced functionalities of the next-gen community-based maintenance management platform.
Assessing maintenance processes with your CMMS
If the organization is already equipped with a CMMS solution such as Mobility Work, this could also be the right time to carry out a maintenance assessment. Managers may want to review all KPIs in order to assess their strategy and adjust it for the future, or even to prepare new projects. They can also prepare the work that will need to be done as a priority when the maintenance workforce returns to work.
For companies fitted with Mobility Work, all these operations are easily carried out from home because the application, thanks to its mobile version, is available anywhere, anytime.
Managing maintenance of operating plants during the health crisis
While many companies are shut down during the containment period, some production units carry on their operations often with reduced shifts.
The need for maintenance during the containment period
Maintenance operations are still necessary in many plants, even when they are shut down. This is the case, for example, in the Baccarat crystal factory, where the furnaces must always be powered and therefore maintained. As we mentioned earlier, this is even more true in production units that continue to operate, for example in the sectors of drinking water production and distribution, wastewater treatment, waste collection and management, pharmaceutical plants, energy production, etc.
Mobile CMMS, a valuable tool for organizing maintenance in small teams
During the health crisis, many factories continue to operate but with a reduced workforce or working from home. In these conditions, having a mobile CMMS tool such as Mobility Work is even more useful than under normal circumstances.
Available on all mobile devices, this application allows remote teams to communicate easily with each other, in particular thanks to the built-in chat tool. It also enables the analysis and planning of maintenance operations that are essential to ensure that teams working on the field are as efficient as possible, while reducing social interactions to preserve their security.
With Mobility Work, it is easier to organize maintenance in a limited workforce, thanks to the application's advanced features that allow you to remotely draw up maintenance lists and measures to be implemented in the plant, and keep track of all the operations performed.
The benefits of 4.0 CMMS are therefore even more obvious in times of sanitary crisis. Knowing that certain constraints weighing on the organization of production are likely to last beyond the period of total containment, it is therefore in the best interest of companies to adapt by adopting a next-gen CMMS tool that allows maximum agility for maintenance management.