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No business wants to experience downtime. When you’re in the manufacturing industry, the financial cost of downtime can be significant. To satisfy your financial goals and keep your bottom line strong, you need to understand how much downtime is costing you and how to reduce the risk.

According to a study sponsored by ServiceMax (conducted by Vanson Bourne of GE Digital), “After The Fall: Cost, Causes and Consequences of Unplanned Downtime,” 82% of companies that have experienced downtime over a 3 year span had outages on average that lasted 4 hours and cost the companies approximately $2 million.

Reduce the Risk

While some downtime is inevitable, it doesn’t have to be something that continually plagues your business. With the right approach, you can reduce downtime and the financial cost that comes along with it.

Tips for Reducing Downtime

  1. Conduct A Risk Audit 

A risk audit will point out obsolescence in terms of equipment. This will help to pinpoint when to replace equipment to stay competitive and avoid expensive repairs in the future. This also helps to determine weak points in the infrastructure and where you may need additional security measures. To avoid any biased or preconceived conclusions it is preferable to use a third-party IT vendor for audits.

  1. Invest in Preventative Maintenance

Although a machine may be functioning properly at the time, preventative maintenance is critical in reducing downtime. Analysis should be done to determine the Recovery Time Objective and Recovery Point Objective and then develop solutions to meet those metrics.

  1. Invest in Proper Training

Investing in the training of your employees will significantly reduce the chances of downtime. Operator errors are extremely common in manufacturing and tend to be repeated until the root problem is addressed. Creating processes and procedures now can also help your staff know what to do in an unplanned outage.

  1. Make Smart Investments

You must be strategic when investing in new technology. Not only do you need the proper equipment and systems, but you also need to be cognizant of the timing. When looking to implement new technology find a strategic IT partner to help determine the benefit of ROI for your organization. Make sure you have a 1, 2 and 3-year technology plan in place with implementation schedules and budgets. Your technology plans should be in line with your business goals.