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Maintenance Planning Can Be Your Best Bet for Maximizing Operations

An Ounce of Prevention is Worth a Pound of Productivity

For years, the idea of preventative maintenance seemed like a risk for your business  - was it really necessary? Were you paying for services that you might not really need, banking on the idea that something would not breakdown or stop functioning properly at some point?

Today, the philosophy has shifted from preventative maintenance to planned maintenance, a strategic approach to optimizing your equipment and processes so that you are getting the most out of your foodservice operations day in and day out.

Planned maintenance is similar to updating your computer software or getting regular oil changes for your car. They are necessary to preventing lost revenue and quality. Leaving your kitchen to chance can mean an inability to create budgets you can adhere to because you cannot factor in reactive repairs; unplanned downtime and related revenue loss; and quality issues that can impact customer perception and lost opportunities to competitors.

Additionally, you must also consider the impact on your staff. If your team is spending time managing a flat top with hot spots or consistently throwing a match at a burner to relight – not only is this potentially dangerous, it impacts food quality, food cost and not to mention staff morale. A foodservice operation that struggles to keep equipment working at optimum runs the risk of higher costs due to staff turnover, requiring more time spent training new staff and in today’s market, if you can find new staff for the job.

According to one ROI expert, the financial impact of planned maintenance can be significant. A recent case study illustrated annual reactive maintenance costs for 2018, versus a combination of planned and reactive costs in 2019. The result? A savings of nearly 25%.

In short, planned maintenance won’t eliminate reactive costs – no planning is perfect. But planned maintenance can definitely reduce what your operation spends annually. By looking at key areas like refrigeration, HVAC, and cooking equipment, you can not only reduce costs, but also enjoy other business benefits, like less unplanned downtime, better performance, and higher levels of customer satisfaction. 

If you’ve made the decision that you want to start a planned maintenance program, how do you begin? The first step is to find a service partner who can help you identify the optimal opportunities within your operation that align with your goals and budget. 

For instance, you wouldn’t want planned maintenance on every single piece of equipment you own. Consider factors like how often you use it, the value of your equipment (what would it cost to replace it), the age of your equipment, and how often you’ve historically had to service various equipment. Based on this assessment, you can identify your highest opportunity equipment for planned maintenance.

Once you’ve defined what your regimen will look like, you can then plan around maintenance times and allocate dollars accordingly. Ideally, the program will reduce overall costs and maximize productivity.

It may seem counter intuitive to decide to spend money on something that isn’t broken. But, the replacement cost for a piece of equipment that fails often far outweighs any type of regular service you would opt to invest in. And, ultimately, you are building a proactive, deep relationship with a service company that will take care of you more holistically and strategically than a vendor who is called in only to fix something when it breaks.

We’re still early enough in 2020 that it’s not too late to develop a plan for this year and beyond that will make sense for your business and improve how you operate. To learn more, or find an Authorized Service Agent close by, visit WWW.CFESA.COM

Content sponsored by Heritage Parts.