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Total Productive Maintenance in Manufacturing: A Beginner’s Guide

If you’re working in the manufacturing industry, you’ve probably heard the term ‘Total Productive Maintenance‘ thrown around a lot. But what exactly is it, and how can it benefit your manufacturing process?

Optimizing production efficiency and reducing downtime is crucial in today’s fast-paced and competitive market. It is where TPM comes in – by implementing this approach, manufacturers improve equipment reliability, increase employee engagement, minimize waste, enhance product quality, and boost profitability.

Whether you’re new to the field or looking for ways to streamline operations, let’s dive deeper into understanding productive maintenance with our beginner’s guide!  

What is Total Productive Maintenance (TPM)?

TPM is a preventative maintenance program that aims to maintain equipment and reduce downtime. It includes scheduled and unscheduled maintenance, as well as operator-led activities. And can be used in any industry but is particularly effective in manufacturing, where downtime can be costly. 

Nakajima first developed a TPM solution in the 1970s to improve equipment reliability in Japanese manufacturing plants. Companies around the world have since adopted it. And is often seen as a part of Lean Manufacturing, as both philosophies focus on continuous improvement and reducing waste.  It aims to keep equipment running at peak efficiency while reducing the need for repairs and accomplished through regular maintenance, both scheduled and unscheduled.  

Total Productive Maintenance emphasizes operator involvement in equipment care, as operators usually notice when something isn’t working correctly. Operator-led activities include cleaning and lubricating the equipment, checking for wear or damage, and reporting any problems to maintenance staff. These activities help keep the equipment running smoothly and prevent minor issues from becoming big.   

Trained technicians typically perform scheduled maintenance, including inspections, calibrations, and replacement of worn parts. Where else, when a problem is detected and involves more extensive repairs, unscheduled maintenance is performed. TPM can be adapted to any manufacturing system, effectively reducing downtime, equipment reliability, and overall maintenance costs.  

How Does Total Productive Maintenance Work?

For a manufacturing company to implement total productive maintenance, it must first understand how the system works. TPM solution is a holistic strategy for maintenance that focuses on maximizing equipment productivity and reliability to achieve perfect production.

It depends on the 5S methods, which enable organizations to organize and standardize maintenance procedures, which enhances production and workplace quality. 5S TPM principles aim for workspace organization and cleanliness, promoting a safe and productive environment to work. By incorporating the 5S methodology, organizations can establish a strong foundation for effective maintenance practices, asset reliability, and workspace safety, enabling organizations to maximize equipment effectiveness and overall operational performance.  

The 5s Total Productive Maintenance Methodology

infographic telling about 5s of total productive maintenance


The first step in the 5S methodology is to sort through items in the organization and eliminate excess clutter or items not essential for operations. With this principle, Total Productive Methodology eliminates unnecessary assets or materials responsible for organizational safety hazards or inefficiencies. This method enables organizations to optimize space and resources while improving asset accessibility and maintenance efficiency. 

Set in Order

Once you sort the items next step is to organize and arrange the remaining assets logically and ergonomically. This 5s TPM principle involves creating proper storage for tools, spare parts, maintenance-related assets, and documentation. Having well-set documentation or layout makes it easier for maintenance personnel to track and access the equipment or items, reducing the time to search and retrieve objects and enhancing the overall maintenance effectiveness. 


This 5S principle emphasizes cleanliness and regular maintenance of the organization. Total Productive Methodology believes in providing a clean and well-maintained environment to prevent asset malfunctions, identify potential issues, and create a safe and effective work environment. Regular cleaning, inspection, and lubrication ensure the equipment’s reliability, detect abnormalities, and prevent safety hazards. 


Standardization establishes clear procedures, work standards, and visual controls to sustain the gains achieved through the first three steps of 5S. In the context of TPM, standardizations involve creating standard operating procedures (SOPs) for asset maintenance activities, ensuring that asset maintenance tasks are consistently performed based on established standards. Standardization streamlines maintenance processes while reducing variability and maintaining consistency. 


The final step in the 5S TPM methodology emphasizes the requirements to sustain the progress achieved by continuously reinforcing the practices and principles of previous actions. Maintaining a pattern of continuous enhancement and disciplined maintenance practices in Total Productive Methodology is crucial. It includes ongoing training sessions, regular audits, performance reviews, and employee engagement to ensure that the principles and practices of productive maintenance and 5S methodology work effectively over time. 

The Benefits of TPM in Manufacturing

Total productive maintenance is a proactive maintenance strategy that seeks to maximize the efficiency of manufacturing equipment and systems. Productive maintenance aims to prevent equipment failures and downtime while reducing the need for repairs and maintenance.

There are many benefits, but three of the most important are that it can help: 

  • Increase Equipment Availability: Increased availability is TPM management’s most apparent benefit. Regularly maintaining and repairing equipment can reduce the time it spends out of service. In turn, this leads to increased production and profits. One study found that It can increase factory capacity by up to 30%. 
  • Reduce Downtime: Reduced downtime is another critical benefit of Total Productive Maintenance. When equipment breaks down, fixing it takes a while–which means losing production time and money. You can carry out regular maintenance that will prevent most breakdowns from happening in the first place by implementing a TPM solution. As a result, your factory will experience less downtime and greater efficiency.  
  • Improve Quality: A well-maintained equipment is less likely to break down and cause defects in the finished product. In addition, regular servicing uncovers potential problems before they become severe enough to affect quality. As a result, It can lead to fewer defects and happier customers and improve product quality. 

How to Calculate Total Productive Maintenance? 

Organizations embed maintenance strategies as a fundamental approach to enhance operational efficiency, maximize equipment availability, and exclude losses. It is essential to calculate various vital metrics and formulas to calculate productive maintenance in an organization.  

The evaluation of OEE is necessary to calculate the TPM, as it involves measuring three essential metrics: Performance, Availability, and Quality Rate.  

OEE = Availability × Performance × Quality 

Availability measures the period when the machinery is productive versus non-productive due to planned or unplanned downtime. It represents the percentage of time that asset is available for production.  

Availability = (Operating Time – Equipment Downtime)/ Operating Time 

Performance is about determining how efficiently an asset operates in an active state. Performance efficiency measures the asset’s speed compared to its ideal maximum speed.  

Performance Efficiency = (Ideal Cycle Time × Total Count) / Operating Time 

Quality Rate determines the ratio of production meeting the anticipated standards. It represents the percentage of products that meet the required quality standards.  

Quality = Good Count / Total Count 

Total Productive Maintenance isa set of asset maintenance and enhancement practices rather than estimated as a single numeric value. It focuses on maximizing asset effectiveness, minimizing downtime, and optimizing productivity. While there is no specific formula or numerical calculation for TPM, the success of its implementation is measured by improvement in asset effectiveness, reduction in breakdowns, enhanced productivity, improved maintenance efficiency, and overall performance of the organization.  

The 8 Pillars of TPM in Manufacturing 

Total Productive Maintenance aims to keep all aspects of the plant running at its highest performance levels while maximizing safety, quality, and efficiency.  It is a philosophy of maintaining and improving the equipment used in manufacturing. 

To Achieve these Results, TPM management focuses on Eight Key Pillars: 

Autonomous Maintenance

Autonomous maintenance empowers the operators to take responsibility for scheduled asset care. This pillar emphasizes empowering workers to care for their machines and equipment. It aims to develop a sense of ownership and pride in their asset by involving operators in maintenance.

By regularly cleaning and inspecting their devices, workers can identify potential issues early on and prevent them from becoming more significant problems. As one of the first total productive maintenance pillars, autonomous maintenance enables organizations to take proactive actions to avoid breakdowns and downtimes. Autonomous maintenance can enhance equipment reliability, decrease downtime, and develop a culture of continuous improvement and self-sufficiency in maintenance practices.

Focused Improvement

Focused improvement projects target specific areas of the plant that need improvement. These projects eliminate waste and increase efficiency in the targeted area. Focus improvement emphasizes continuous improvement and problem-solving within an organization that follows TPM management.

It urges employees at all levels to identify, analyze, and solve asset-related issues, losses, and inefficiencies that impact productivity and execution. Focused improvement involves identifying the underlying causes of problems and developing practical solutions. Organizations can reduce downtime, eliminate waste, and achieve higher productivity and quality by focusing on continuous improvement with focused improvement and total productive maintenance pillars.

Planned Maintenance

Planned maintenance focuses mainly on establishing a systematic method of creating scheduled maintenance activities rather than waiting for assets to break down with the TPM solution. It includes creating a complete maintenance plan according to asset condition, usage, and manufacturer’s recommendations.

The goal is to regularly perform the maintenance activities like predictive maintenance, preventive maintenance, inspections, and parts replacements to prevent unexpected asset breakdowns or failures. It enables organizations to increase asset reliability. With the TPM in manufacturing, planned maintenance needs careful scheduling, documentation, and observance to ensure that the assets remain in optimal condition and operate effectively.

Quality Maintenance

Quality maintenance is one of the pillars of total productive maintenance that incorporates quality management principles into maintenance tasks. It ensures that the organization’s end products meet or exceed customer expectations. It considers identifying and correcting the issues within the products before they reach customers.

Quality maintenance in TPM conducts regular inspections, addresses the abnormality or problems in the assets, and implements measures to prevent defects during maintenance operations. Quality maintenance emphasizes the significance of accuracy, cleanliness, and reliability. Incorporating quality management practices into maintenance activities in organizations can reduce product defects, enhance efficiency, and improve overall product quality, increasing customer satisfaction and competitiveness.  

Training & Education

Training and Education in total productive maintenance emphasize providing comprehensive training programs for the employees to enhance their skills and knowledge to conduct maintenance tasks. It seeks to equip them with the expertise to maintain, troubleshoot, and operate assets effectively, as it encompasses technical training on asset maintenance best practices, safety protocols, and any other specific skills required to conduct effective maintenance operations. The organization investing in training and education improves the confidence and competence of its maintenance personnel, leading to higher asset reliability, decreased downtime, and improved overall maintenance performance. 

Office TPM

The office’s total productive maintenance focuses on the administrative and support functions within the organization. It extends the maintenance concept from the production to non-production areas to streamline office operations. It aims to improve efficiency and productivity while eliminating waste in administrative processes and tasks. The office TPM solution principles will help organizations to achieve enhanced communication, workflow, and accuracy while reducing the lead times throughout the organization.

Safety, Health & Environment (SHE)

The Safety, Heath & Environment pillars focus on ensuring a safe and healthy workspace. This pillar incorporates safety protocols, health measures, and environmental considerations into the maintenance practices and operations. TPM solution identifies and eliminates hazards, promotes safety training, and employee safety procedures are safety programs to prevent organizational dangers and injuries.

Health involves promoting employee well-being, addressing ergonomic concerns, and availability of adequate personal protection equipment. Environmental aspects aim to reduce the impact of operations on the environment through energy conservation, waste reduction, and liable resource management. Prioritizing the SHE principles in total productive maintenance enables the organizations to enforce the safety rules and regulations, ensuring the proper disposal of hazardous materials and more. 

Administration & Management System

To ensure the success of the seven pillars, administration and management systems need to be in place to track goals and progress. It also includes quality management systems such as ISO 9001 certification, which can help demonstrate a commitment to excellence in manufacturing processes. Effective administration and management practices are essential for supporting and sustaining TPM initiatives within an organization.

This practice involves the establishment of clear roles, responsibilities, and processes for productive maintenance implementation. It ensures effective communication and coordination, offers required resources and support and sets performance metrics for total productive maintenance implementation. A well-defined administration and management system enables organizations to align maintenance goals with overall organizational objectives, enables effective decision-making, and ensures the integration of TPM principles into daily operations.  

How to Implement Total Productive Maintenance ?

To properly implement a TPM solution, it is essential first to understand what the concept entails. It is a method of maintenance that focuses on improving the overall efficiency of a manufacturing process by identifying and eliminating sources of waste and inefficiency within the process. One of its key components is regular maintenance, which helps to keep equipment running at peak performance levels and reduces the likelihood of unexpected downtime. 

Once you have a solid understanding of TPM management, you can begin working on implementing it in your manufacturing facility. There are four main steps to successful implementation: 

  • Develop a Comprehensive Maintenance Plan: This plan should outline all aspects of an organization’s total productive maintenance process, from regular check-ups and cleaning to more extensive repairs and upgrades. It should also contain detail on who will be responsible for each task and the last completion date of the job. 
  • Train your Employees: Appropriate training ensures employees can adequately execute the maintenance plan. Organizations need to guarantee that their employees understand TPM’s importance and how it can benefit the company so that they can effectively complete their assigned work. 
  • Implement Preventive Measures: In addition to regularly scheduled maintenance, you can take several preventative measures to improve efficiency further and reduce downtime. These may include installing new technology or upgrading equipment as needed.  
  • Evaluate and Adjust as Necessary: After implementing total productive maintenance, monitoring its effectiveness and making necessary changes is essential. This process may involve tweaking the maintenance plan, retraining employees, or investing in technology or equipment associated with the previous productive maintenance plan. 

Who Should Participate in Total Productive Maintenance?

TPM is a system aimed at improving the performance of manufacturing equipment and machinery. It is a proactive approach that emphasizes regular maintenance and inspection, as well as operator training and education.

Both large and small manufacturing facilities implement productive maintenance for asset maintenance. However, it is most effective in organizations committed to continual improvement and willing to invest the time and resources necessary to implement a productive maintenance program. A successful TPM in manufacturing requires the involvement of everyone in the organization, from top management to front-line workers. It is essential to get buy-in from all levels of the organization to build a culture of ongoing improvement.  

The organization must adequately train the operators to maintain equipment and identify potential problems. They should also be encouraged to participate in regular maintenance activities. Maintenance staff must be familiar with the principles of total productive maintenance and be able to execute its procedures properly.

They should also proactively identify potential improvements essential for productive maintenance programs. Also, management must provide an organization with the necessary resources and support to implement productive maintenance. They should also establish clear goals and objectives for the program and track its progress over time.  

The Four Aims of TPM Management

Improving Asset Effectiveness

The primary aim is to enhance asset effectiveness by reducing downtime, breakdowns, and overall equipment performance. Proactive maintenance aims to optimize asset availability, performance, and quality. With total productive maintenance, organizations strive to ensure that assets operate at their highest efficiency level, resulting in enhanced productivity and reduced operational disruption. 

Engaging and Empowering Employees

Total productive maintenance aims to create a culture of employee involvement and empowerment. It encourages maintenance operators to take ownership of asset maintenance and enhancement activities. It enables a sense of responsibility and engagement in the maintenance operators by involving them in asset maintenance-related decisions and providing them with the required skills and training.  

Promoting Continuous Improvement

Total production maintenance aims to drive constant organizational improvement. It prompts identifying and eliminating asset-related losses, defects, and inadequacies in organizations through problem-solving, data-driven decision-making, and root-cause analysis. TPM empathizes with the culture of constant learning and improvement to enhance asset efficiency. 

Fostering a Safer and more Positive Workspace

Organizations must have a safe and positive work environment. And Total productive maintenance focuses mainly on employees’ safety, health, and well-being, which creates a safe working environment by integrating ergonomic considerations, safety protocols, and health measures into maintenance activities. It ensures that all the employees have received essential resources, training, and support to perform their tasks safely and effectively. 

The four aims of TPM management are to enhance asset reliability, productivity, and employee engagement and develop a culture of continuous enhancement and safety in the workplace.  

Fogwing Asset+ : The Essential Software for Total Productive Maintenance

Fogwing Asset+, a smart CMMS and asset performance monitoring platform, can significantly benefit businesses with Total Productive Maintenance by providing essential tools and capabilities to optimize asset maintenance processes and enhance equipment effectiveness in factories and facilities.

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Fogwing Asset+ Asset Performance Management Software

Here’s how Fogwing Asset+ can help businesses with TPM:

  1. Real-Time Asset Monitoring: Fogwing Asset+ offers real-time monitoring of equipment and assets, providing valuable data on their performance, status, and health with IoT connectivity. It enables businesses to detect potential issues early, enabling proactive maintenance and reducing the risk of unexpected breakdowns.
  2. Checklist recommendation engine: Fogwing Asset+ involves a maintenance checklist recommendation engine (CRE) powered by Open AI GPT, enabling organizations to revolutionize asset maintenance management with the help of tailored checklists and standard procedures. This technology empowers maintenance managers and engineers with the advanced tools to implement total productive maintenance effectively.
  3. Predictive Maintenance: With advanced analytics and machine learning algorithms, Fogwing Asset+ can predict equipment failures and maintenance requirements. By identifying potential faults, businesses can schedule maintenance tasks more efficiently, avoid costly downtime, and optimize maintenance efforts.
  4. Remote Monitoring and Management: Fogwing Asset+ supports remote monitoring and management of assets, allowing businesses to monitor equipment health and performance from anywhere. It is particularly beneficial for companies with multiple locations or geographically dispersed assets.
  5. Customizable Maintenance Workflows: The platform allows businesses to create customized maintenance workflows and checklists to ensure consistency and standardization in maintenance activities. It helps optimize the maintenance process and ensures that critical tasks are performed and not overlooked. With the Fogwing Asset+, engineers will have separate platforms to view and execute their work orders, which helps the organizations to conduct total productive maintenance effectively.
  6. Performance Metrics and Reporting: Fogwing Asset+ has an inbuilt analytic engine that provides various maintenance performance metrics, Key performance indicators, and reports to conduct the TPM. Through comparisons, asset metrics offer visibility of the asset’s MTTR, MTBF, and preventive maintenance effectiveness.
  7. Manage Suppliers, Customers, and Engineer Contacts: The TPM solution to be effective, it’s essential to have all information available in one place for easier access. Fogwing Asset+ allows you to create and manage suppliers, customers, and engineers under a single platform. Integrate with existing CRM, SCM, and HR Management systems through API Integration for seamless data sync.
  8. User-Friendly Interface: Fogwing Asset+ offers a user-friendly interface with an intuitive dashboard, easy navigation, KPIs and charts. Its interactive real-time alerts, and precise analytics simplify asset monitoring and management. With mobile compatibility and contextual help, users can access critical information on the go and receive timely assistance. The platform’s user-centric design empowers efficient TPM implementation, enhances data-driven decision-making, and ensures a seamless experience for users of all skill levels, optimizing maintenance processes and asset effectiveness.

By leveraging Fogwing Asset+ in TPM implementation, businesses can achieve better asset management, reduce downtime, optimize maintenance efforts, and create a more productive and efficient maintenance ecosystem. It ultimately improves equipment reliability, reduces operational costs, and enhances organizational performance.


In Summary, Total Productive Maintenance can significantly benefit any manufacturing facility. By taking the necessary steps to identify and address potential vulnerabilities in equipment, it is possible to minimize costly breakdowns and unnecessary repairs. In addition to preventing issues before they occur, TPM also provides organizations with increased visibility into the condition of their equipment to perform proactive maintenance when needed. Proper implementation of  TPM in manufacturing is essential for manufacturers striving for improved performance and reliability.  

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