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Kingspan uses ShireSystem to cut machinery breakdowns by 15% and increase asset availability by 10%

ShireSystem

Kingspan is the global leader in high-performance insulation and building envelope solutions. Investing in ShireSystem, Computerised Maintenance Management Software (CMMS), with additional PowerBI business intelligence has enabled the company to increase asset reliability and performance, maximising productivity and making decisions based on real insight.    

ShireSystem was instrumental in delivering:

  • 15% fewer breakdowns  
  • 10% higher asset availability  
  • Global database of stocks and spares  
  • Informed inventory management decisions 
  • Environmental improvements by going paperless

Finding CMMS software that is fit for purpose 

Today, ShireSystem is the globally adopted system for Kingspan’s insulated panel division. But it was a different story when Regional Engineering Manager, Adam Coles, joined the company in 2017.  

At that time, Kingspan’s legacy software was so outdated that it was hardly utilised within the business.   

“We were firefighting all the time. Nothing was properly documented. We needed a CMMS system that would allow our team to follow a routine and a schedule.”  

In 2018, Kingspan selected ShireSystem as its new CMMS solution. Adam and his colleagues Derrick Dodo and Bruno Caliengue worked with the Elecosoft team, who are responsible for developing ShireSystem, to onboard data for over 1,000 assets in a five-phase programme. The system was launched at Kingspan’s largest UK facilities in Sherburn, North Yorkshire, and Holywell, Wales, in 2020.

By 2023, ShireSystem had been successfully deployed in 32 Kingspan insulated panel production plants around the world, reflecting the standards and practices established in their Sherburn facility.

“In the past, deploying software too quickly has been our downfall. It was important we implemented ShireSystem correctly and that all our data was readily available on the system. Now our setup is aligned across Kingspan sites and we can all support each other.” 

Once the system went live, Derrick and Bruno acted as product champions, training teams and continually looking for opportunities to enhance the way ShireSystem was used within the Kingspan business.

Tackling tasks in order of priority

Introducing ShireSystem has revolutionised how Kingspan’s plant engineers manage the team’s workload.  

All planned preventative maintenance (PPM) jobs are now uploaded to the software days, weeks, and months in advance. This enables the plant engineers to assign work orders to technicians, maximising productivity while ensuring everyone has a balanced workload. 

“There’s been a reduction in admin since we’ve introduced ShireSystem. Our plant engineers can be much more strategic because they do not have to get involved in hands-on management.”   

In addition to scheduling planned maintenance, the team now channels all responsive tasks through ShireSystem’s Work Requester module. This provides a clear and structured method for managers and team leaders throughout the business to report engineering works and requests.

Onboarding ShireSystem has also transformed how technicians execute jobs. Previously, the department was reliant on printed work orders. However, Kingspan has now introduced ShireSystem’s Mobile Pro application, which delivers a digital task list straight to the technician’s smartphone or tablet.

Documentation for each asset is uploaded to ShireSystem, so technicians have a clear set of instructions to work from. Tasks are checked off as they are completed, giving the team a real-time view of outstanding work orders and an accurate audit trail for company compliance.

In addition to being much more efficient, adopting Mobile Pro has democratised the way tasks are assigned. Previously, technicians often ‘cherry-picked’ the jobs they wanted to do. Kingspan’s plant engineers now set the agenda to ensure technicians complete tasks in order of priority.  

The results: higher availability and fewer breakdowns 

Improving how Kingspan manages and executes asset maintenance has positively impacted the company’s insulated panel division.  

Since rolling out ShireSystem, technicians are carrying out much more remedial work as they’re attending to fewer emergency jobs. Since 2020, Kingspan’s breakdown rate has declined significantly by 15%, with PPMs now accounting for 91% of the maintenance workload:

  2020  2021  2022 
PPMs/remedial work  76%  85%  91% 
Breakdowns  24%  15%  9% 

 

Not only is this better for company output; it’s given the team a better work/life balance.  

“Prior to ShireSystem, we regularly had calls out of hours through the night and weekend, having to attend to site issues. Now, those calls are very few and far between.” 

A stronger focus on PPM means average availability rates have increased, rising from 83-85% in 2018 to 95% in 2023. 

Kingspan is now logging more than 8,000 jobs a year through ShireSystem, and the team has enhanced their performance without recruiting more resources.  

 

Creating a global database of spare parts  

Scheduling isn’t the only area that Kingspan has optimised; ShireSystem has also transformed the way that the company manages spare parts. 

The company has a global database detailing the location of all spare parts, which technicians can book out to specific jobs in advance. This enables the team to ensure there are sufficient components for PPMs as well as unplanned repairs.

Prior to implementing the CMMS software, Kingspan had no central system for managing parts. Inventory knowledge was locked in people’s heads. The Holywell plant has multiple stores, so it was often difficult to ascertain where stock was located.   

Using ShireSystem, Kingspan has created an accurate database of its stocks and spares, catalogued using a standard labelling structure.   

Using PowerBI to make stronger strategic decisions  

Kingspan is now using its global database to optimise purchasing and managing parts, using an additional business intelligence module: PowerBI.  

PowerBI is a Microsoft data visualisation tool that integrates with the CMMS software via ShireSystem BI Connector. The additional insight generated by PowerBI has enabled Kingspan to: 

  • Set minimum and maximum stock levels based on how often parts are checked out. 
  • Link parts to assets to better understand the demands of Kingspan equipment.  
  • Make strategic decisions about how much inventory to carry,for example, infrequently used equipment can be shared between sites.  

“Before we integrated PowerBI, we had little control over the parts we bought. We might have had 20 spares of a component we use once every ten years but no stock for a critical part. Now, we can make purchasing decisions based on real insight.”  

Inventory is not the only area where business intelligence is delivering value. PowerBI has also enabled the insulated panel division to validate how it schedules and manages workload.  

When a machine breaks down, the team uses Failure Mode and Effect Analysis (FMEA) to determine the root cause of the problem. This allows Kingspan to identify common occurrences and adapt its schedule to prevent those issues from happening in future.  

“Through PowerBI, we can see the biggest causes of downtime for every line, business unit and piece of equipment so we can identify trends and fix issues.” 

They also use PowerBI to produce reports demonstrating the impact of their programmes and create a business case for when to replace machinery versus maintaining it.  

Supporting Kingspan’s Planet Passionate scheme  

While the main investment driver was improving productivity, onboarding ShireSystem has enabled Kingspan’s maintenance team to contribute to the company’s Planet Passionate scheme.  

Planet Passionate is Kingspan’s 10-year global sustainability programme. The company believes that advanced materials, building systems and digital technologies play an important role in addressing circularity and climate change issues, and ShireSystem supports this goal by enabling the maintenance department to go paperless.  

The Permit to Work module has made a particularly important improvement to the team’s carbon footprint. Previously, the team used 50-60 different printed permits, all of which have now been digitised.  

The first engineering management process that everyone has aligned with  

With clear evidence demonstrating the software’s positive impact on productivity, reliability, availability and sustainability within Kingspan’s insulated panel division, ShireSystem has caught other departments’ attention.  

“ShireSystem is one of the first structured processes for managing engineering requirements that everyone in our company has aligned with. We’re now keen to roll it out to other departments and sites.”  

Adam and his team continue to work closely with Elecosoft to develop Kingspan’s use of ShireSystem as part of a successful ongoing customer relationship.  

Book your ShireSystem demo to run maintenance programmes using our market-leading CMMS software. 

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