What drove you to pursue a career in implementing business improvement and reliability initiatives?
When I started in engineering, I worked as a design engineer, designing first military and then heavy mining equipment. I quickly realized that there is a big gap between what Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) prescribe and what end-users really need for maintenance and spare parts. I pushed reliability centered design (RCD) and reliability centered maintenance (RCM) principles (two very new concepts at the time) in the organization I worked for in order to understand the user requirements better, but I wasn’t successful in convincing my supervisors to adopt the principles. In 1996 it was a time in South Africa where we were very heavily sanctioned, and it was difficult for South African companies to buy new equipment from the global suppliers. I decided to pursue a career in business and reliability consulting where I could implement improvement processes to prolong useful life of assets.
As the president of Aladon and the Aladon Network, explain this global community and how it serves asset reliability professionals.
The Aladon Network is a global network of industry professionals who all worked in organizations where RCM-based reliability improvement projects were implemented. The Network is a fraternity of reliability specialists who have experienced the impact of RCM-based improvement programs and have a passion for the work they do – they are like disciples spreading a belief. Network members are certified in the delivery and application of the Aladon risk and reliability methodologies. I work closely with the Network members to develop new methodologies or improve on existing methodologies and develop world class training courses and delivery methods in each methodology.
Many reliability improvement initiatives exist today – most of them have similar objectives in mind. Some achieve the objectives sooner and more effectively, so understanding the intent, strength and constraints of different processes is helpful in selecting the best approach for our clients. A well-documented, repeatable and robust defensible methodology is required for true sustainable results. Additionally, selecting a partner that shares the same vision and passion delivers results fast. Like safety, reliability is not a commodity, it cannot be bought. Similarly, implementing reliability software alone cannot deliver results but the combination of the methodology (understood by all involved in the process) and the technology (software to support the methodology) is a winning recipe.
What do you want customers to know about the new RCM3 textbook?
I was fortunate to have been trained and mentored by John Moubray, one of the pioneers of the asset reliability and maintenance industry. John made a huge impact with his RCM2 methodology and the creation of the Aladon Network. Aladon has been setting the standard and for over 30 years and has helped customers across the globe implement RCM2 through providing world-class training and consulting services. The RCM2 book sold more than 100,000 copies and is referenced by many as the RCM bible. The RCM2 book covered the challenges of the third-generation maintenance, but the world of maintenance continues to change. Industry 4.0 brings new challenges, and together with the International Standards for Risk and Physical Asset Management (ISO 31000 and ISO 55000), Fourth-generation Maintenance requires a new approach and new thinking. The risk-based approach is aligned with the requirements of the international standards and taking maintenance management to a new level of physical asset management. RCM3 places risk management and asset reliability mainstream with the organizations other business processes and I trust the new book will build on the success laid by John Moubray and RCM2.
What’s the future for RCM?
Once people adopt the RCM process, they never go back. And with new technology today (digitization, IIoT and cognitive learning) and in the future, the more people are removed from the interface of equipment, the greater the need to understand how that equipment behaves, the risks associated with owning and operating the equipment and the more valuable RCM becomes. At Aladon in the last year, we’ve seen an explosion of more people wanting to implement RCM properly. This is partly because younger engineers enter the reliability industry, and they’ve heard about RCM and want to know more and partly because of new demands placed on assets and the people responsible for the asset’s performance. Once they understand what RCM is about, they want to apply it. RCM is a rigorous process and can be time consuming and expensive to implement unless it is planned and executed properly. However, the benefits always outweigh the costs. Companies that want to stand out and differentiate through implementing responsible physical asset management, will have to adhere to ISO standards. Then, if an accident does happen, proper implementation of RCM and recognized standards will protect them. To comply to these international standards for physical asset management will require organizations to do RCM.
To ensure an RCM-based program is implemented right, the Aladon business model had to change from one where we provided training (change management) and consulting in RCM only. At times when we trained employees in an organization and only helped with initial implementation, we’ve seen them struggle to sustain the implementation of the methodology and long-term benefits. Our goal is to make companies self-sustaining through training, mentoring and support. This includes proper planning, scoping, training and mentoring, implementation, performance monitoring and continuous improvement and our Network responded to these requirements. We want to be part of organizations’ longer-term strategic programs and our methodologies are designed to do that. It’s a big undertaking, but the benefit is mind blowing.
Aladon and the Aladon Network through its award-winning methodologies and training and world-class software can provide the resources to assist in your journey. Aladon will transfer the knowledge and establish the culture for sustainable change. The Aladon Network is a global community of reliability professionals whose members are certified by Aladon as practitioners and facilitators in the delivery of risk and reliability-based methodologies for physical assets. This global network has helped clients apply RCM-based practices in over 100 countries for more than three decades. For additional information about The Aladon Network, email Marius at [email protected] or visit www.aladon.com or call (910) 399-3867.