Building a culture of reliability through operational excellence
Hoosier Energy teams present at international event for maintenance excellence
EnergyLines March 2020
Reliability is part of Hoosier Energy’s mission for members. Connecting to this mission was a recent event focusing on reliability beyond equipment maintenance. Thought leaders in the industry from the cooperative presented at the International Maintenance Conference with more than 1,000 in attendance from around the world.
“The conference applies a business philosophy that streamlines organizations and ties the value of their assets to their company mission,” says Chester Hembree, senior power production engineer.
Planning, executing and supervising the core team model of small, cross-functional teams, Hembree co-presented “Building the Culture of Excellence Foundation with Core Teams” with senior project manager Mark Kramer.
The presentation addressed Merom Generating Station’s maintenance culture journey, the development and implementation of core teams, and how the plant uses core teams to drive excellence.
In 2011, the Merom Generating Station started down a path to bring accountability and ownership to the maintenance process by implementing the Equipment Ownership program. While successful, the program was still reactive in nature, according to Hembree. In 2015, a cross-functional team was assembled to find a proactive approach to maintenance. Core teams focus on specific sets of equipment at the plant. This new initiative built off of the successes of the prior program, while driving the organization in a more proactive direction.
The second presentation, “Merom Generating Station Lubrication Reliability Program,” was presented by environmental specialist Dave Appel and production engineer Gary Burris.
Burris and Appel explained how the Merom Generating Station, like many power plants, had issues with use, handling and storage of lubricating oil. To ensure a successful lubrication reliability program, the team created a guideline manual, which provided a roadmap from the inception of new oil to the disposal of the old oil. This was the basis for reliability that they shared with conference participants.
When the presenters were not actively presenting, they took advantage of gleaning as much information from the conference as possible.