The continuous improvement or Kaizen is an advanced generic instrument that can be used in the maintenance process, leaving very good results for companies.

The improvement process involves optimizing key production and maintenance factors through continuous analysis of activities and processes. This aims to reduce costs, improve productivity, increase profitability, and control and eliminate failures.

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This approach is also applied in the areas of quality, production, and marketing. One of the most effective tactics is the Kaizen method, which emphasizes both individual and group improvement on a daily basis.

Kaizen is a philosophy that focuses on making small, incremental improvements every day. It doesn’t seek to achieve major changes in a short period of time. Instead, this approach emphasizes slow, steady improvement that is sustained over time.

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In the business world, Kaizen means a continuous and gradual improvement process with the participation of personnel at all levels. It is important to understand that this is a long-term process that yields excellent results.

TPM and continuous improvement

Continuous improvement is an essential element of Total Productive Maintenance (TPM), particularly in its Autonomous Maintenance pillar. Maintenance comprises a series of daily activities carried out by workers, such as cleaning, inspections, lubrication, and the identification of possible improvements.

In autonomous maintenance, these activities must adhere to established standards, and production personnel should receive adequate training on equipment operation and basic maintenance.

Continuous improvement is an ongoing process that seeks to optimize these activities and improve equipment reliability, leading to increased productivity, reduced costs, and improved overall performance.

Some of the objectives to be achieved with the autonomous maintenance are:

  • To avoid the malfunction of the equipment through the correct operation and the permanent verification; according to the standards established for it.
  • Improve safety at work.
  • Achieve the sense of belonging and responsibility of the worker.
  • Use the equipment as a tool to learn new skills.
  • Optimize the operation of the equipment with the contribution of the workers.

It must be clear that autonomous maintenance cannot be applied to equipment where it has very advanced technology. Due to the complexity of its maintenance.

Measuring improvement is crucial for any maintenance management program. To ensure progress, it’s important to use indexes, yields, or activity indicators to quantify any improvements in performance.

Without measuring these indicators, it is impossible to evaluate whether the maintenance program is meeting its goals. Additionally, keeping a record of these indicators enables better decision-making and helps identify areas that need further improvement.

Remember that what is not measured cannot be improved, so it’s important to establish a system for measuring performance and tracking progress.