Exorcise the Factory Downtime Demons: How IM Supply Implements Preventative Maintenance

Downtime in a chemical processing plant means lost time, money and productivity. The goal is always to keep systems up and running, but how can this be realistically achieved?

The best way to keep your plant operating at peak efficiency with minimal downtime is to partner with a trusted electrical and lighting MRO solution provider.

IM Supply is a national MRO supplier with a network of more than 780 distributor locations across the United States and Canada. At any given time, the company handles nearly $1 billion worth of electrical and lighting product inventory. Fortune 500 companies rely on IM Supply for their electrical and lighting MRO solutions.

How IM Supply Will Reduce Downtime at Your Plant:

Use current information to make future predictions

“We believe if something can be measured, it can be improved,” said Jared Hoover, president of IM Supply. Evaluating a plant’s historical purchasing and other financial reports allows IM supply to estimate the average lifespan of a product in the plant. For example, if records show that a high bay light, lasts an average of five years in the plant, it’s a reasonable assumption to estimate that half of the high bay lights will stop working after five years.  Group relamping those fixtures prior to end of life can really reduce maintenance and spot relamping costs which can significantly add up.

Set preventative maintenance schedules

IM Supply will use predictive analytics to determine the best timeframe to perform repairs and service to minimize any downtime in plant operations. This is done through a preventive service and/or replacement schedule rather than waiting for something to break before fixing it. This schedule will help avoid equipment failures that could lead to plant downtime. With nearly 800 distributor locations across North America, a local distributor will have your plant’s critical parts on hand even before a plant needs them. And because IM Supply distributors know the chemical processing industry so well, they will suggest products that will last longer, work better or provide better energy efficiency. “For example, a higher quality product might be guaranteed for a year instead of six months and that would eliminate maintenance and downtime during repairs,” said Keith Jack, vice president of IM Supply.

Streamline inventory

What’s the magic inventory number for your plant? How much lighting and electrical supplies should you have on hand? Very often, plants have a lot non-critical inventory on hand from multiple suppliers. IM Supply works with your on-site staff to settle on the right inventory levels and  eliminate duplicate SKUs. “If we are working on site, we offer plant specific vendor-managed inventory solutions (VMI) because we are often more efficient at it since we know our products better,” Jack said. Even without a VMI agreement in place, IM Supply works with the plants to ensure adequate supplies of critical parts at all times.

Set realistic inventory levels

IM Supply reduces a plant’s inventory by stocking a set amount of critical inventory onsite. Non-critical items and additional volumes of critical inventory will be stored at a local distributor, where they can be delivered upon request. Delivery from a local IM Supply distributor can happen within 24 hours, allowing plants to hold less inventory on-site and lowering plant operating costs. Distributors will automatically reorder supplies to maintain set levels at your plant location to minimize downtime and simplify inventory management.

When you team up with IM Supply, you gain a trusted partner. Together, we will improve your process efficiencies and save money through lower operating expenses.

The right MRO supplier can keep processing running at optimal capacity, which is why chemical manufacturing companies choose IM Supply.


Learn how IM Supply provides exceptional local MRO service on a national scale. Talk to an IM Supply specialist or download the whitepaper.