Effective maintenance management plays a key role in operational excellence. Major cement producers such as Lafarge have gained their market position as an result of improving their operations through effective preventative and best-practice asset maintenance programmes. by Ralph Rio, ARC Advisory Group, USA.
Within an area or region, raw material and energy costs in the cement industry are often similar with cement producers showing little variation in the use of raw materials and manufacturing processes used. Thus, the key differentiator among competitors becomes operating excellence in terms of controlling costs while making a high-quality product. This includes high yield, energy efficiency, automation and uptime. To achieve these parameters requires excellence in maintenance management, particularly for a commodity product like cement.