4 Benefits of Total Productive Maintenance

Lean Manufacturing focuses on continuous improvement in the pursuit of perfection. This philosophy can apply to manufacturing production through a Total Productive Maintenance (TPM) approach. By empowering employees to take responsibility for equipment maintenance and productivity, productive maintenance can help a manufacturer see benefits in 4 key areas: Efficiency, Moral, Safety, and Satisfaction.


TPM is all about the pursuit of ‘perfect production’ – no breakdowns, defects, or accidents. This requires a manufacturer to look at quality over quantity, and in the same vein, to prioritize efficiency over output. One tool available for manufacturers adopting productive maintenance is measuring Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE). This metric, calculated by looking at Availability x Performance x Quality = OEE, helps manufacturers to identify areas of improvement in effectiveness and efficiency of operations.


Adopting lean manufacturing philosophy requires a full buy-in from all levels of a company. Employee resistance to these changes will wain if positive results are present. Productive maintenance empowers employees to be responsible for the upkeep of their equipment, and allows employees to take ownership and pride in their work. These proactive and preventative steps lead to less equipment failure, which minimizes frustrating downtimes and further encourages the buy-in to the TPM philosophy.


Total productive maintenance models are rooted in Lean’s 5S approach. The S’s in question – Sort, Set in Order, Shine, Standardize, and Sustain – all point to the idea that clean, healthy, organized machinery and equipment lead to a safer work environment. TPM’s focus on proactive and preventative maintenance reduces workplace disorderliness, increases lifespans of equipment, and encourages a workplace design that maximizes flow, productivity, and efficiency. All of these pieces build a foundation of safety for employees at all levels.


Efficient production, employee moral, and a safe workplace are all positive results of adopting a total productive maintenance plan. But most will agree that the result that matters the most is customer satisfaction. Quality Maintenance, one of the TPM pillars, integrates quality improvements into the manufacturing production process. The results are often an increase in quality output and a reduction in defects and reworks. Couple this with reliable equipment that experiences less downtime, and manufacturers see a significant increase in customer satisfaction and repeat business.

Understanding and implementing TPM requires a knowledge of, and commitment to, lean manufacturing. Catalyst Connection offers support through their comprehensive continuous improvement approach of Lean Manufacturing Consulting. Catalyst offers many tools to success, including simulation-based trainings that focus on the 5S system and how to apply it to the workplace.

Small steps can lead to big improvements within a manufacturer. By adopting Total Productive Maintenance and the lean manufacturing philosophy, companies can reap the benefits of increased employee moral, perfect production efficiency, a safer workplace, and higher customer satisfaction.