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Does Your Storeroom Database Do This?

Tue, 06/04/2013 - 11:45am
Mike Dyson and James Rogers, Storeroom Solutions, Inc.

Data integrity is the foundation for store operations to contribute to maintenance program performance.

Here’s a test. Go into your parts storeroom and try to find a part that you can’t match to any piece of equipment in your plant. It’s a very rare plant that doesn’t have a box, bin or even shelves full of parts that no one is quite sure exactly where they go, but the storeroom is keeping, “just in case.” Even with sophisticated database software in place, we have seen a case where someone found a bearing that could not be identified, but it was stamped with a date of manufacture as 1956. What are the chances the original machine it belongs to is still operating?

Years of “thinking Lean” led many manufacturers to install systems offering visibility to the flow of direct production parts from suppliers to the assembly line. Very few, however, have had the same discipline or success tracking indirect inventory or maintenance, repair, and operations (MRO) data on all the bearings, belts, motors, cleaning supplies, gloves or hair nets required to keep the production line going. For instance, a car might have 15,000 to 20,000 direct parts, but the assembly lines used to build that same vehicle requires many more indirect parts in a storeroom to keep those assembly lines moving. And although MRO parts and supplies might make up only a small percent of expenditures by a plant, they generate 95 percent of the purchase transactions.

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