Evaluation of the maintenance strategies for improved equipment systems performance at CIPLA QCIL
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World over pharmaceutical manufacturing industries are realizing the need for a more pragmatic approach of managing organisational assets and hence machine maintenance management has grown rapidly within this sector. An evolving industry, Uganda’s pharmaceutical manufacturing is up against several challenges, including a heavy reliance on imports for inputs, equipment and replacement parts for critical machinery that are not only dependent on outside sourcing but also on occasion specialized technical personnel. Despite existing preventive and breakdown maintenance strategies, CIPLA QCIL is still faced with mechanical system challenges whereby cases of machine breakdown continue to happen leading to equipment downtime. It was against this background that the current study sought to develop a machine maintenance schedule management control system that increases the availability of machines, reduces the total downtime as well as production costs. Documentary review checklist, observation guide and key informant interviews were employed in mapping and profiling, analysis of the existing maintenance strategies, and maintenance operational gaps. A system development life cycle approach was used to establish functional, non-functional, and user system requirements. After determination of the architectural, hardware and software requirements, a pilot prototype was designed within a NetBeans Integrated Development Environment. The cost and benefits associated with the project prototype and deploying were determined. The initial cost of investment, annual cash flows and the project payback period were used to calculate and establish the viability, as well as feasibility. The cause for majority of the machine breakdowns was found to be delayed/skipped maintenance and many of these were reported from the production and engineering departments. The same departments constituted the largest consumption of spares. Spares were predominantly sourced and supplied from India and China. Findings showed a lack of adequate infrastructure to support maintenance activities within the organisation. The developed CMMS was jointly recommended for use in conjunction with reliability centred maintenance.