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Philosophy: A note about work order priorities

What are work order priorities? If we ask any given plant with a Computerized Maintenance Management System (CMMS), if they have a well defined priority system, the answer is almost always, yes. The question is, do they really? Well, let’s define what a world-class priority system is, then why not use this “did you know” and check if your own priority system is of high quality or not?

Characteristics of a world-class work order priority system according to IDCON:

  1. The priority system obviously has a code or number to signify the importance of a work order. But, is there a set of rules that describes what type of work that can be classified as a high, medium and low priority?
  2. Does each work order priority code have a time limit attached to it? For example: Priority 1 will be started immediately, priority 2 within a week, priority 3 within a month etc?
  3. Are the priorities reviewed in a weekly/ daily planning and scheduling meeting JOINTLY by operations and maintenance? (If not, there is little chance to effectively coordinate the production schedule with the maintenance schedule).
  4. Work orders are not over prioritized by strong individuals in the planning and scheduling meetings since there are a set of rules that describes what type of work that can be classified as a high, medium and low priority.
  5. Are there high priority work orders older than 3 months in your system? If so, your plant probably has a tendency to over prioritize work orders.

Good luck with defining and using a priority system.

See a sample prioritization chart