Preventable machine failures are costing UK manufacturers up to half a million every year

UK manufacturers are suffering costs of up to half a million every year, despite preventative service management software being able to inhibit this staggering waste.

The success of every manufacturing business is reliant on its machinery. Any machine breakdown has a detrimental impact, causing three fundamental issues:

  1. Production is hampered causing a backlog of work.
  2. Customer loyalty decreases because their demands are not met.
  3. Money is lost every minute the machine is down.

To understand the scale to which machine downtime impedes the UK manufacturing industry, we commissioned an independent survey that interviewed large swatches of senior leaders in large machine-reliant UK enterprises.

The results confirm why the manufacturing industry is under so much pressure at the moment – both operationally and financially:

  • Manufacturers reported that their machines fail, on average, every 2.5 months.
  • Each time the machine breaks down, it takes on average, 9 hours to fix. But some report having to wait 72 hours for a resolution, taking an enormous hit on the production schedule and decreasing productivity.
  • Each time a machine is out of action, manufacturers lose £12,042. This equates to £60,210 every year, with some of the larger companies losing over half a million per annum.
  • Nearly two thirds report that machine downtime erodes customer satisfaction. This causes huge ramifications on business reputation, subsequently increasing customer acquisition costs and impeding business growth.

The expense caused by downtime simply isn’t sustainable. Compared to global competitors that have far cheaper production costs, UK manufacturers need to stand out from the crowd and lead the way in finding new, innovative, highly efficient ways of doing business.

Predictive service management software will revolutionise manufacturing

We know from the research that the most common causes of machine downtime are internal technical faults and machinery that fails due to its age.

Significant technological advances over the last few years mean that we can prevent both of these scenarios from happening.

Solution 1: Quickly respond to potential failures
Every machine works in a specific way and is reliant on an array of different elements all working simultaneously. The failure of one small part will provide a domino effect on the rest of the machine, causing downtime that often requires a multifaceted resolution.

By plugging directly into the PLC (Programmable Logic Controller) using existing sensors, or adding new sensors to each key part within the machine, we can monitor their performance. Whether that is monitoring temperature for signs of overheating or monitoring vibrations for signs of instability, the sensors continuously monitor the parts within the machine.

The data collected from the sensors is fed into Oneserve, a service management solution. As soon as a sensor reports activity that goes outside of its normal parameters, the system raises an alert and Oneserve automatically schedules an engineer to attend the site and resolve the issue.

By responding so quickly to irregularities, the engineer can carry out maintenance that will prevent the machine from failing and causing significant production downtime.

Solution 2: Understand the viable lifespan of a machine
The same sensor data can be used to build a picture of the overall health of each machine. By plotting the machine’s performance over time, you will build an ‘asset viability’ projection which will show the likely point in time when it will be more cost effective to replace the piece of equipment.

Lead the revolution

If you would like discover how you can cut production downtime and increase the lifespan of your machines, learn more about predictive software for manufacturers here.