June 26

Improving commercial laundry efficiency through production strategies and management systems

Blog insights, Laundry Operations


As many leaders in the commercial laundry industry may know, a Total Productive Maintenance (TPM) system can play a major role in improving laundry efficiency.

Especially in commercial laundries – spaces where any delays and disruptions to routine activity can result in far more serious consequences – systems that ensure that things are on track are of the utmost importance.

TPM and commercial laundry management systems are a few of the strategies and solutions that bigger businesses invest in. Are you curious about how you can make these a part of your facility as well?

Continue reading for a closer look at how you can improve laundry efficiency in a wholly practical and sustainable manner.

What is TPM?

A production maintenance strategy dating back to World War II, this is where maintenance is more of an on-going, continuous process, rather than the ad-hoc approach many commercial laundries have in place, at the moment.

What you should know about TPM is that it’s very much based on on-demand availability and efficiency – a state of affairs supported by systematic maintenance schedules. Here, instead of involving machine operators and repairmen only when needed, laundries involve them more on the front line.

This allows them to make fixes and repairs on the go and prolong equipment lifetime by watching the equipment for any signs of trouble. By being proactive about maintenance, improving commercial laundry efficiency is rendered an automatic process.

This process, however, is likely to be automated in the near future – at least, the bug detection aspect of systematic maintenance cycles. A development in the works as early as the 1940s – where manufacturers attempt to convert their systems into Computerized Maintenance Management Systems – it’s only a matter of time until AI fully automates this process.

How can a TPM and commercial laundry management system improve laundry efficiency?

Predictive maintenance is enhanced

To begin with, commercial laundry management solutions – especially those that regulate factors like operational efficiency and productivity of your equipment – make it easier for you to improve laundry efficiency by default.

By having a bird’s eye view of all your equipment, their washing cycles and other operational information, you have the ability to ensure that your facility or facilities run like a well-oiled machine.

TPM improves this process because it helps you optimise your operations by incorporating frequent maintenance in a way that ensures that your service delivery doesn’t lag.

A commercial laundry’s workforce is utilised more effectively

Another metric that has much to do with laundry efficiency is how effectively your workforce is being utilised. Essentially, are you leveraging employee skills in a meaningful way?

You may find that some of your laundry operators may have the requisite knowledge and experience to maintain machine equipment, eliminating the need for you to bring in external specialists. This doesn’t just improve efficiency but also brings down the cost for equipment upkeep and repairs.

Sophisticated commercial laundry management systems also help you optimise certain elements of laundry productivity, which include the efficiency of your staff. By combining the principles of TPM with the infrastructure of your management system, you can now make the most of your workforce and ensure that machine productivity is at the highest level.

How do you integrate TPM into your commercial laundry?

At the heart of a TPM system lies 4 integral components: tools, equipment, operators and the CMMS.

Tools, in this context, refer to those that are used for day-to-day operations, such as laptops. Here, it’s important that operators understand where maintenance is needed and for it to be tracked, either manually or via automation.

Employees also need to be trained on how to undertake equipment upkeep and on the basics of preventative maintenance and have these incorporated into their daily or weekly activity.

Improving laundry efficiency isn’t rocket science – improve your output in a few moves

Improving laundry efficiency doesn’t have to be a one-off process; continuous improvement can now be incorporated into your operations with strategies like TPM and a commercial laundry management system.

Combined, these productivity solutions can really change how your commercial laundry works, both, in terms of your equipment and employees.

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