I’m a big proponent of measuring and monitoring especially when it comes to maintenance. In order to know if your preventive maintenance program is working as it should, you need to measure the results.
But what Key Performance Indicators (KPI) should you use? There are a variety of things you could benchmark against, but I think KPIs need to be tailored to meet your operation’s individual needs.
For example, Corey Wilker, lease and rental manager at Warner Leasing Co. Ltd., a NationaLease Member, uses mileage as a guide. He has set an average mileage for tires by application. “If the tire rewards me with 200,000 miles, I know that routine maintenance has been done on the unit,” Wilker says. “If the tire only does 125,000 miles, I need to make sure the application of the unit was kept and that no driver error was involved.” He says if he is not getting the mileage he should, he knows that maintenance has been neglected and will then take steps to improve the process.
Jeff Fazan, lease and rental service manager at Tom Nehl Truck Leasing, a NationaLease Member, turns to true breakdown causes as his measurement tool. He looks at the data to see if the breakdown was caused by the driver, or in any way by lack of maintenance or poor or sloppy maintenance. “I will tweak our maintenance program as we find issues related to individual equipment and customer needs,” Frazan explains. “In other words, one size does not fit all [the trucks] in our fleet.”
He uses this same philosophy with tires as well. Each tire replacement is reviewed for cause and correction. “The other item we look at is repeat or comeback work to identify mechanic training issues,” he says.
He also makes sure equipment specs, modifications and changes are up-to-date. “If something is costing us money, we will change the spec.”
When it comes to KPIs, there is no right or wrong answer. The key ingredient is measurement. Determine what you want to monitor in your operation, and then do it on a consistent and ongoing basis. If you do that, your maintenance program will optimize your trucks’ performance on the road.