The company formerly known as Mackie’s Crisps has invested in ShireSystem CMMS/CAFM software to future-proof its maintenance operation and enhance its planned maintenance programme.
ShireSystem is enabling Taylor’s Snacks to:
- Capture all maintenance requests in a single location
- Maximise the productivity of its small engineering team
- Intelligently schedule planned maintenance around production
- Resolve emerging issues before they develop into critical faults
Making maintenance operations future-proof
Rebranding from Mackie’s Crisps to Taylor’s Snacks wasn’t the only significant change in 2023, for Scotland’s biggest crisp brand. The company also made its maintenance operation future-proof, recruiting a new Head of Engineering and Facilities, Matt Dunmore, and investing in ShireSystem CMMS software to underpin its planned maintenance programmes.
While Matt is new to the Taylor’s Snacks role, his relationship with the Taylor family goes back a long way, as he worked for Taypack Potatoes Ltd in the early 2000s until it was acquired by QV Foods.
He’s also a ShireSystem veteran, having deployed our CMMS software in every role he’s held for nearly 20 years:
“I’ve used ShireSystem in companies with £20 million turnover through to £220 million turnover, with single site and multi-site implementations. It’s that flexible,” Matt says.
When Matt joined Taylor’s Snacks in early 2023, the firm was heavily reliant on contract engineers and maintenance tasks were managed via a spreadsheet. His primary objective was to recruit a team of skilled technicians and introduce CMMS software to centralise and streamline the maintenance workload.
“Taylor’s Snacks is a hands-on, family-owned business. We’re all focused on getting quality products out the door. My priority was building a reliable operation with the right CMMS software, which could enable everyone in the company to work productively.”
Maximising maintenance around production constraints
Taylor’s Snacks runs a lean operation, as most of its products are manufactured from a single production line at their Perthshire site, which operates 24 hours, 5 days a week.
The maintenance team – which manages around 200 assets – is split into three shifts, with one technician working each shift plus an additional lead engineer rotating between shifts.
Due to production constraints, the team prioritises urgent tasks and breakdowns during the week, carrying out most planned maintenance work out of hours and during weekends.
However, some planned maintenance can be conducted during the week with intelligent scheduling. For example, Taylor’s Snacks washes potatoes for 10 hours each day, so washing equipment can be serviced and upgraded around those core hours.
“We’re a small operation, so a single point of failure can stop the factory. ShireSystem helps us to align our maintenance schedule with production plans so we can maximise the time when assets aren’t active.”
Rolling out feature-rich CMMS software in a phased deployment
Matt’s extensive experience with ShireSystem proved pivotal to his deployment strategy at Taylor’s Snacks. While the software is feature-rich, Matt knew that a radical system overhaul can overwhelm a tight-knit operation, so he opted for a phased roll-out.
“My biggest learning from previous ShireSystem deployments is not to implement it too quickly. If you suddenly present people with a thousand planned maintenance tasks, it’s overwhelming. It’s better to start with tasks you can comfortably achieve and embed them into the team’s daily workflow.”
Initially, Taylor’s Snacks focused on using ShireSystem’s Work Requester module. Introducing this module first allowed the company to channel all maintenance requests and updates through a single system, accurately capturing workload and prioritising tasks.
Digitising work requests has benefitted both technical and non-technical personnel within the Taylor’s Snacks business. ShireSystem provides a time and date stamped record of all maintenance requests for operational staff so that they know their enquiry is being dealt with. For engineers, ShireSystem provides clear objectives for each shift and manages the status of each task, ensuring that no jobs ‘slip through the cracks’.
“ShireSystem holds us accountable. It enables us to capture colleagues’ requests and deal with them in a timely manner, using appropriate resources.”
Introducing ShireSystem in a phased approach has made the transition easily manageable for all staff, and Matt continues to add new tasks and assets on a weekly basis.
Moving from a reactive to planned maintenance model
In addition to centralising maintenance operations, ShireSystem is helping Taylor’s Snacks shift their focus from reactive maintenance work to planned preventative maintenance programmes.
Once an asset has been repaired or refurbished following an error or breakdown, it can be transferred to a planned maintenance regime. This will allow Matt’s team to regularly service machinery to prevent future downtime.
ShireSystem also captures a complete record of maintenance for auditing purposes, and any actions from inspections or audits can now be formally forwarded to the engineering department via ShireSystem, helping to solve small problems before they snowball into critical issues.
While it’s still early days for Taylor’s Snacks, the maintenance team has ambitious plans for ShireSystem. The company recently bought a popcorn factory in Sheffield, where Matt plans to roll out CMMS software in the next 3-6 months.
“Using ShireSystem in both our Perthshire and Yorkshire factories will give me the transparency to see remotely what is being done site by site.”
Matt also wants to deploy additional ShireSystem features, including management KPIs and reporting and inventory management controls.
Taylor’s Snacks currently tracks the percentage of planned maintenance completed, but the team would like to monitor additional metrics, including downtime as a percentage of overall production. This currently stands at 2%, however, Matt would like to lower this figure using ShireSystem.
Matt would also like to improve the maintenance team’s warehousing capabilities to better manage spare parts.
“There’s so much more we can do with ShireSystem. But the goal is always to roll out new features in a phased manner, so we resource it correctly and people don’t feel overloaded.”
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