Racine, Wis.-based Gormac Products has been manufacturing precision machined parts since 1947 for various markets including aerospace, electronics, telecommunications, automotive, hydraulics, defense and medical and dental industries. Core competencies include precision Swiss turning, precision machining, diamond bore finishing and centerless grinding.
With sophisticated machinery delivering precision to four or five decimal places and costing as much as $350,000 per CNC turning center, care and feeding of the machines is critical. Customer demands often require production of several thousand parts per day, and more than 40 machines operate at any given time. “Our company lives or dies by the performance of our machines,” says Mark Sommer, Gormac Products president and CEO, “so having a reliable preventive maintenance system in place —knowing the when, where and performance of each piece of equipment — is an absolute necessity.”
To control its PM program, Gormac Products chose a computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) from CWorks Systems (www.cworkssytems.com) designed specifically for small- to medium-sized companies. The automated maintenance management program supports systematic inspection, detection and correction of incipient machine failures before they occur and develop into major defects. Since installing it, mechanical failures and resulting downtime have been significantly reduced.
But the company also gained an unexpected benefit from its CMMS software: sales generation. The PM reports produced by the CMMS proved to be an effective marketing tool to prospective clients who wanted evidence that the company’s manufacturing equipment was properly maintained and functioning.
It’s one thing to say, “Yes, we do that,” but quite another to be able to demonstrate that the program is in place and being followed. The PM reports are impartial and don’t embellish; they provide historical evidence of the actual maintenance performed on the company’s equipment.
Using PM reports as a marketing device wasn’t envisioned when the software system was originally purchased. It was a potential client — a well-known medical device company — that proved how effective these reports could be in closing a sale. This company wanted assurances that Gormac Products’ machines could maintain continuous supply of its product.
“The PM reports generated by this system were a major selling factor,” says Sommer, “Potential clients came to us needing certainty that their product could be produced without interruption. The reports documented our maintenance efforts and assured our customers that all equipment was being properly monitored and maintained, and that adequate controls were in place.”