In October 2011 Russell Thompson, Corporate MRO/Purchasing Manager at Idahoan Foods in the USA joined SparePartsKnowHow.com as a Member. In the time since then Mr. Thompson has used the resources at SparePartsKnowHow.com to achieve a 50% spare parts inventory reduction. In this extract from a recent interview he tells us how.
Idahoan Foods is based in Idaho, USA, and manufactures potato products that are shipped around the world. Idahoan Foods operates four processing plants on a 24/7 schedule, which means that minimizing downtime is a key goal of their maintenance and spare parts management.
Despite being a seasoned MRO professional with decades of experience, across a range of industries, managing millions of dollars in spare parts, Thompson decided that a subscription to SparePartsKnowHow.com would be the best way to help his team achieve their spare parts inventory management goals.
‘SparePartsKnowHow.com helped me to identify specific actions to examine, sort and improve the MRO position of the company to build a world-class MRO program for Idahoan’, said Thompson.
‘SparePartsKnowHow.com helped me to figure out what had to be done to develop the structure, proper metrics, and processes. The objective third-party influence helped me neutralize the skeptics and the neigh-sayers and the proof is in the results. Over three years we have lowered the total inventory amount by more than 50%’.
Thompson went on to explain how these results were achieved.
‘Our first step was to develop a logical stocking policy that qualifies what and how much to stock and also eliminates the emotional stocking that plagues maintenance and engineering because we addressed criticality and risk correctly. In addition we: eliminated excess and obsolete items, used vendor managed inventory and off-site vendor stocking, developed consignment agreements, and general system improvements internally.’
The fact that during this time Idahoan also undertook an expansion program, adding new equipment and spares, makes the inventory reduction achievement all the more noteworthy.
When asked about the specific aspects of SparePartsKnowHow.com that he found most useful, Thompson went on to say,
‘The Re-Order Point Calculator as SparePartsKnowHow.com was useful because it helped eliminate the guesswork around stocking levels.
Also, because of what I learned at the site I was able to explain to management why the traditional MRP and ERP systems don’t properly address MRO and maintenance very well.
Then by sharing articles and videos with my direct reports and management we started the discussion and leveled the playing field so that we were all on the same page. This enabled us to create a well-informed workforce with singular goals.
We then developed a plan, which enabled us to prioritize and execute against some quick and meaningful wins. What I really liked was that the timely articles and videos were quite refreshing and helped bring me back to center. It was funny how I would be working on a project and then an article appears that assists me.
It was very nice to see immediate results using the tools from SparePartsKnowHow.com. It really is great.’
Despite all of this success, Mr. Thompson continues his Membership to SparePartsKnowHow.com.
Its not just me making it up as I go, I actually have a formula and a resource that is succinct, specific and logical.’
For more information please visit the website at www.SparePartsKnowHow.com or contact us directly.