What Does A Maintenance Planner Do?

What Does A Maintenance Planner Do?
What Does A Maintenance Planner Do?

The Maintenance Planner is a vital position that keeps the wheels spinning in the heated world of industry. A maintenance planner is a genius who makes sure that all of the machinery and equipment function as planned. They are frequently seen in the background of physical asset health and reliability situations. They guarantee that all planned maintenance is finished on time.

Maintenance Planners make plans to keep equipment in good shape using operational and engineering information about it. Plus, they help save money by cutting down on maintenance costs.

The maintenance planner positions are more common in bigger companies with lots of equipment to look after, needing someone to focus on it. Planners often work with different people in the company, like those who make things, fix things, and design things.

But what does it take to become a Maintenance Planner? What are the maintenance planner job responsibilities? And what kind of maintenance planner training is required? These are some of the questions that must be in your mind. Worry not, we’ve covered everything in this blog.

Keep scrolling as we dig into the nuances of the sphere of the maintenance planner, whether you’re thinking of pursuing training in this field or you’re just interested in learning more about this significant role in the business community.

Let’s start things with the maintenance planner job responsibilities.

Job Responsibilities of a Maintenance Planner

Knowing what a maintenance planner can do helps you decide if this job is right for you. Here are some of the responsibilities of this job:

Developing Maintenance Strategies

Developing plans to maintain an organisation’s equipment is the main responsibility of a maintenance planner. These tactics are preventive in nature, meant to anticipate any glitches that can result in icky delays because of malfunctioning equipment or neglected maintenance. The planner creates the best maintenance plans by working together with technicians, engineers, and machine operators to balance cost and productivity. They examine data on machinery performance, such as age, breakdown rates, and efficacy, to guide these strategies.

Navigating Emergencies

Even the most meticulously laid plans can be derailed by unforeseen circumstances. A new machine might break down due to a manufacturing fault, or an accident might occur in the workplace. Such incidents can disrupt production and affect scheduled maintenance elsewhere. In these situations, Maintenance Planners spring into action,  working with the operation’s supervisors to reallocate tasks or resources to address the immediate emergency swiftly. They then modify existing plans to accommodate these unexpected events.

Overseeing Maintenance Staff Performance

Maintenance planners usually decide how often maintenance workers like technicians and mechanics need to do their tasks. With minimising disruption as a priority, they may establish performance targets and metrics for maintenance staff. These metrics could include repair speed, reductions in machine downtime, time taken to diagnose a breakdown, and the material costs of repairs. This helps them figure out how well the maintenance work is doing and find places they can make it better.

Bridging Teams

A key aspect of a Maintenance Planner’s duties is acting as a bridge between different teams, such as production teams and maintenance staff. These teams may have conflicting priorities in the workplace, making it the Planner’s job to find viable compromises. For instance, while production staff might be focused on meeting quotas, maintenance staff aim to minimise breakdowns to meet their performance goals. By fostering strong relationships with both teams, Planners can find solutions that benefit both parties and align with broader organisational goals.

Managing Inventory

Organisations with a large number of machines often maintain a stock of spare parts and repair materials. This is crucial to ensure repairs and maintenance work are carried out promptly, thereby minimising downtime. As part of their planning duties, Planners may be tasked with monitoring the stock levels of these items. They oversee the ordering and delivery of new stock, check existing inventory, and ensure there are sufficient supplies for emergencies. The plans they develop and the use of CMMS systems are invaluable sources of information for making these decisions.

Using CMMS Software

Software for computerised maintenance management systems, or CMMSs, is an essential tool for maintenance specialists. It facilitates the collection and management of hardware-related data by planners, which helps with the scheduling of maintenance tasks. Essentially, CMMS software serves as a comprehensive database for the company’s assets, encompassing everything from machinery and parts to infrastructure and other equipment needed to care for and perform maintenance on assets. 

With a good understanding of maintenance planner job responsibilities, let’s now talk about the educational requirements to be a maintenance planner.

Educational Requirements To Be A Maintenance Planner

Becoming a Maintenance Planner requires a blend of education and experience. Most employers prefer candidates with a bachelor’s degree in engineering or project management, and a certification from a recognised body like an Institute of Engineers can be beneficial. Good high school grades can help secure an entry-level position and pave the way for career progression. 

Training courses related to maintenance work, such as a Diploma in Maintenance Engineering Technology or a Trade Certificate in Engineering Technology discipline, can provide a strong foundation. Alternatively, suitable education in Maintenance, Installation and Repair for Engineering and Manufacturing assets could be a viable choice.

For those preferring a hands-on approach, a apprenticeship as a Maintenance Operations Engineering Technician or an Engineering Fitter can offer practical skills alongside theoretical knowledge. 

Having gained insight into the educational requirements for the role of Maintenance Planner, let’s discuss the essential skills needed to excel in this position.

The Skillset of a Successful Maintenance Planner

The Maintenance Planners are the backbone of the maintenance department, the advocate for their team, and the enforcer of the maintenance schedule. Therefore, they require a strong set of skills to shine in their role.

Mastering Communication

The ability to communicate effectively is the lifeblood of a maintenance planner’s profession. What delays work progress or possibly puts a technician’s life in danger is inadequate communication. The maintenance planner understands workplace safety and clearly communicates intricate procedures through comprehensive work orders and manuals.

Project Management Prowess

Maintenance Planners are the maestros of maintenance job task scheduling, ensuring jobs don’t disrupt operations or production activities. They are also skilled at prioritising work orders in the event of an emergency or maintenance backlog. Their role extends to identifying all maintenance materials, safety gear, and equipment to complete job tasks on a work order from start to finish.

Problem-Solving Savvy

The ability to think quickly and problem-solve is essential for a Maintenance Planner. They handle unexpected situations, resolve conflicts, and balance competing goals among teams. Moreover, they create emergency plans, ensuring swift and effective responses to unforeseen events. This skill set leads to improved operational efficiency, minimised downtime, and improved workplace safety.

Organisational Excellence

As the custodians of organisation and timeliness for maintenance tasks, Maintenance Planners must possess exceptional organisational skills. This involves meticulous documentation of maintenance tasks, assigning work orders to the right technicians, boosting customer satisfaction, managing the budget, facilitating data-driven decision-making, improving asset performance and continuously updating information in the CMMS.

Understanding Mechanical and Engineering Concepts

While Maintenance Planners in large organisations may not perform maintenance tasks themselves, they need a strong understanding of mechanical and engineering concepts. This knowledge allows them to outline tasks, estimate resources, and align maintenance goals with business requirements. Familiarity with industry standards like OEE and acceptable downtime is crucial. Prior experience in a technical role can be an added advantage.

Now that you understand the educational requirements and necessary skills for a maintenance planner position, let’s explore how much this position pays.

Average Yearly Income For A Maintenance Planner

The maintenance planner salary is a reflection of the critical role they play in an organisation. A maintenance planner earns substantially more than an artisan. However, this figure can fluctuate based on various factors such as the industry, geographical location, size of the company, and the planner’s years of experience. 

Having said that, it is noteworthy that the income potential of a maintenance planner usually rises as they gain more experience and refine their maintenance skills.  As a result, spending money on skill development and getting industry experience may increase the average pay for the role. 

Now, let’s look at the compelling reasons why choosing a career as a maintenance planner can be highly advantageous.

Benefits of Choosing a Career as a Maintenance Planner

Stepping into the role of a Maintenance Planner opens up a world of opportunities and benefits:

Career Advancement

With hard work and dedication, you can climb the corporate ladder within your organisation, potentially moving into higher positions.

Diverse Work Areas

This role allows you to work across different sectors of the organisation, offering a varied and dynamic work environment.

Making a Difference

As a Maintenance Planner, your effective planning can positively impact people’s day-to-day lives, adding a sense of purpose to your work.

Cost and Environmental Efficiency

Your expertise can help companies save money by preventing breakdowns and extending equipment life, reducing environmental impact.

Collaborative Effectiveness:

As a maintenance planner, you work with a team that wants to make the workplace safer, better at getting things done, and more efficient for everyone. This teamwork makes the job more enjoyable.

In essence, becoming a Maintenance Planner not only offers professional growth but also the chance to make a significant impact on your organisation and the environment.

Wrapping Up

Taking on the mantle of a Maintenance Planner presents a wealth of possibilities. It involves blending technical know-how with strategic thinking, providing an opportunity to greatly influence an organisation’s effectiveness and output. 

If you want to stay ahead in the world of maintenance planning and scheduling, LRS is here to help. With LRS’s top-notch courses, you’ll gain the edge you need. Our Maintenance Planner Course and Comprehensive RCM Training Course are expertly crafted to elevate your skills and knowledge. From effective maintenance management to scheduling strategies, we cover it all. What makes us stand out? Besides top-quality content, our courses are priced affordably, making professional development accessible. Plus, you’ll have a personal tutor for tailored guidance every step of the way. Don’t hesitate—enrol today and supercharge your career!