Operations and Maintenance Program Measurement

Operations and maintenance (O&M) measurement tends to focus on reliability as the sole metric. Every Federal agency wants a reliable facility, but this metric alone is not enough to build a successful O&M program.

O&M managers must think beyond reliability. Successful programs incorporate reliability along with controlling costs, evaluating and implementing new technologies, tracking and reporting health and safety issues, and more. Not only are these metrics useful in assessing effectiveness, but also in equipment cost justification, program modifications, and staff hiring.

Common Metrics

The following metrics are common in evaluating effective O&M programs. Not all of these metrics can be used in all situations, but a program should use as many as possible to better define deficiencies and publicize successes.

  • Capacity factor: A measure of actual operation compared to full-utilization operation. It relates actual plant or equipment operation to intended full-capacity operation.

  • Work orders generated/completed: Tracking generated and completed work orders over time to allow a better understanding of workloads and staff schedules.

  • Backlog of corrective maintenance: Used as an indicator of workload issues and maintenance program effectiveness.

  • Safety record: Commonly tracked by number of loss-of-time incidents or total number of reportable incidents. Safety record tracking is useful for getting an overall safety picture.

  • Energy use: A key indicator of equipment performance, level of achieved efficiency, and possible system degradation.

  • Inventory control: An accurate accounting of spare parts can be important in controlling costs. A monthly reconciliation of inventory "on the books" and "on the shelves" provides a good measure.

  • Overtime worked: Weekly or monthly hours of overtime worked has workload, scheduling, and economic implications.