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Maintenance planning based on Machine hours?

Maintenance planning based on Machine hours?

(OP)
Hi. I'm trying to figure out if I can effectively use Project for scheduled maintenance planning of a bunch of assets we have for a pile drilling company (trying to avoid expensive specialised packages).

Basically, I want to be able to schedule maintenance tasks based on both the hours on the machine and date. i.e. assign the machines to projects and have Projects tell me/estimate what date I will need to say change the hydraulic oil (which needs to be done every 400hours for example)

I'm not sure if Project can do this/is ideal to do this, as I haven't found anything through searching. I'm hoping someone can at least point me in the right direction in terms of whether it can/can't be done. Otherwise I'm in for a big Excel mission.
Any help would be appreciated!

RE: Maintenance planning based on Machine hours?

Seems sort of plausible. I can imagine:
> defining a "workday" calendar which specifies how many hours per day it works, holidays, etc.
> defining a starting point on the calendar
> creating an item that has as its total work the operational hours until its required maintenance
> the scheduled end of the item would be the scheduled date for maintenance

Admittedly, it seems to be a bit of a cannon shooting at a flea, but I would tend to agree that using Excel for this might actually be more work.

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RE: Maintenance planning based on Machine hours?

Project may be useful to you to some extent. I cannot firmly say how much useful it will be without knowing your system sufficiently. If it does not satisfactorily meet your scheduling requirements, you may be interested to develop an Excel application which may take at least 2 weeks of your time for development and testing. Your problem will be solved if the Excel application can satisfactorily meet your scheduling requirements. But, there is no guarantee that such Excel application will be more effective than Project after all the hard work.

I understand your hesitation to look at specialized packages for scheduling purpose. All such powerful tools are certainly more expensive than MS Project but some of them are not necessarily too expensive. You may be surprised to know that there is a very wide range of prices for those powerful tools. Most of the heavily advertised tools may cost a lot. However, some of the most powerful scheduling tools which come with no bells and whistles are indeed available even for $2,000. you may find them far superior to Project in detailed operations level scheduling.

I guess you are just looking for a scheduling tool which only does "timing" of operations by assigning right resources without overallocation. But, a good scheduling tool can also serve as a powerful decision support tool for production / maintenance management. It can display schedules in elegant charts with drag-and-drop operations and facilitate fast and extensive what-if analysis and proactive capacity planning.

With weak automatic resource leveling capability, MS Project cannot serve as an intelligent decision support system in production / maintenance. Even custom Excel applications developed within the company may have the same weakness.

If free, limited-time, trial copies of such best-of-breed scheduling tool are available, then you can assess their ROI by running them with actual data for some time. Sometimes, you may get great benefits from an affordable, best-of-breed scheduling tool.

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