Last week an engineer from a major international offshore drilling company, whose name you would instantly recognize, came to see me about training. And not the more commonly sought 'how- it-works' training, but rather the 'how-to-stop-it-bleeding-money' type of training. As you can imagine, this company has a LOT of hydraulic equipment working in harsh environments all over the world. And this client frankly admitted they aren't on top of its proactive maintenance. The mind boggles.
When this sort of thing happens I get a warm glow inside. Because it validates what I've been banging on about all these years. A lot of hydraulic equipment users - large and small - are in the same boat, but most are either unwilling or unable to recognize it. I'm not sure which. So when a company as large as this one says: "Hey, there's a lot of money floating around here and if we smarten up, some of it will flow to our bottom line!" it's professionally satisfying from my perspective.
Of course, the bigger the hydraulic equipment user the bigger the opportunity. AND the bigger the challenge. Because there's more equipment and a bigger variety of it, and many more people involved, both at the 'coal face' and at each level in the hierarchy. Still, it can be done. But where do you start?
As I explained to this client, start by chunking the project down into manageable pieces. This could be a single piece or category of equipment, or a single drilling rig in their case. This makes the task of getting the operating variables right, and the necessary people, know-how and procedures in place, a hellava lot easier. It also greatly increases chances of success. And small successes are not only essential in a corporate environment - they're also repeatable and scalable.
So how will this client go? Honestly, it's too early to tell. It won't happen unless it's endorsed from up high and will struggle to succeed unless there's genuine buy-in from the front-line troops. Which is why if you're a smaller hydraulic equipment user or someone who works for one, you have a definite advantage when it comes to getting your 'house' in order.
And if you'd like some ideas, The Hydraulic Maintenance Handbook is choc full of the 'how-to-stop-it-bleeding-money' type of know-how I've been talking about here. If you own hydraulic equipment, or are responsible for its upkeep, it's worth your serious consideration. At the very least, to discover six costly mistakes you want to be sure to avoid with your hydraulic equipment, get "Six Costly Mistakes Most Hydraulics Users Make... And How You Can Avoid Them!" available for FREE download here.