What Are MRO Inventory Best Practices?

An inventory management technician holding a tablet with a CMMS implements MRO inventory best practices.
An inventory management technician holding a tablet with a CMMS implements MRO inventory best practices.

Poor management of maintenance, repair, and operations (MRO) inventory can result in costly unplanned downtime and, minimally, high asset cost of ownership, which is an unfortunate outcome for many organizations. In fact, in many organizations with complex manufacturing processes, MRO costs can account for up to 50% of total maintenance costs.

So today, we will go over the best practices businesses can use to manage their MRO inventory as efficiently as possible. We will also discuss how LLumin’s computerized maintenance management systems (CMMS+) software enables organizations to follow best practices and always have the right inventory and the right quantity on hand when needed, as well as the ability to automate part reordering whenever necessary.

What Is MRO Inventory?

MRO inventory includes all materials, parts, and supplies required for the upkeep and repair of an organization’s equipment, facilities, and infrastructure.

MRO inventory is typically a collection of spare parts, replacement components, consumables (such as lubricants and adhesives), safety equipment, and tools necessary for ensuring the uninterrupted operation of production equipment and preventing unplanned downtime. However, while these parts are required to support operations, these items do not play a role in the manufacturing of finished goods.

What Is MRO Inventory Management?

MRO inventory management is an integral part of a company’s maintenance and operations strategy because it can help ensure that the least amount of MRO inventory is kept on hand while ensuring that necessary parts are always available when needed. 

MRO inventory management involves ensuring that necessary items are in stock, tracking inventory, optimizing inventory levels, and forecasting demand to ensure that items required for maintenance tasks are efficiently stocked and used. When performed correctly, this process will help reduce equipment downtime, improve operational efficiency, and balance maintenance and repair needs with an organization’s overall financial goals.

Inventory management can be performed with manual recording processes, but they are time consuming and prone to error. Instead, it can be better managed and optimized with the help of a powerful CMMS such as LLumin’s CMMS+.

MRO Inventory Best Practices

Because MRO inventory is a critical component of any organization’s operations, and effective management of MRO inventory is crucial to maximizing machine uptime and lowering maintenance costs, we’ve compiled a list of MRO inventory best practices for businesses to implement for increased inventory efficiency.

Here are some best practices for MRO inventory management:

  1. Establish clear inventory policies: If your organization does not have clear policies for inventory management, including procurement, receiving, issuing, and disposing of MRO inventory, this is a good place to start. Establishing clear inventory processes will help ensure that everyone involved in inventory management follows consistent procedures.
  2. Employee training: All business critical employees and team members should be up-to-date on inventory requisition and replenishment protocols, including software use, and best practices for handling, storing, and using MRO materials.  
  3. Itemize, categorize, and standardize: In addition to itemizing your MRO inventory, you should categorize items based on their importance to your manufacturing processes, lead times, and frequency of usage. Further, standardize MRO items whenever possible to reduce the number of items that must be managed.
  4. Conduct regular audits: In addition to tracking and updating inventory levels regularly, you should audit inventory to identify obsolete, slow-moving, or surplus items. This will help to optimize inventory levels and avoid overstocking or stockouts.
  5. Vendor management: It is essential to work closely with MRO vendors and develop good working relationships to negotiate favorable pricing, ensure timely delivery of MRO items, and access technical support when needed. 
  6. Utilize an inventory management system: Using a solution such as LLumin’s CMMS+ software can help you track inventory levels, keep a record of maintenance history for all business-critical equipment, and even forecast your future maintenance needs. Further, LLumin can help you generate automatic purchase orders to ensure you always have the right MRO parts at the right time.

LLumin’s CMMS+ Supports MRO Inventory Best Practices

LLumin’s CMMS+ solution is an effective tool for optimizing MRO inventory processes by replacing inefficient manual tracking and recording processes with a centralized system that automatically monitors inventory levels, generates purchase orders, and tracks usage patterns. 

Because of its advanced ability to track and correlate inventory, work order requests, and historical maintenance data over time, LLumin’s CMMS+ will help your company reduce overall maintenance costs and accurately forecast maintenance and inventory needs.

LLumin will help you avoid MRO overstocking (and stockouts) while enabling you to identify additional cost savings opportunities. LLumin can also automate all of your maintenance processes, notifying and alerting your team when maintenance is needed and reducing the risk of equipment failure and unplanned downtime.

Optimize MRO Inventory With LLumin’s CMMS+

With LLumin’s CMMS+ advanced inventory management features, users can forecast their MRO inventory needs and track necessary parts more accurately and effectively, resulting in a reduction in waste and expenses, as well as the prevention of disorganization and mismanagement that is frequently associated with less effective processes.

LLumin’s CMMS+ is a complete solution for condition-based monitoring that enables organizations to control inventory based on actual need and set automated replacement ordering triggers, helping users to control the carrying costs of storing inventory and avoid the common problems associated with being over or under-stocked. 

When you choose to work with LLumin, you will have access to excellent customer service throughout the implementation process. Your project will be tailored to your company’s specific goals and requirements. We will provide you with a complete implementation plan, support team, and ongoing assistance throughout your digital transformation and beyond.

So if you are looking for a cutting-edge CMMS+ accompanied by a seamless implementation process and an expert customer support staff, then LLumin is a perfect fit.

Getting Started With LLumin

LLumin develops advanced CMMS software to support preventive maintenance programs for industrial plants, municipalities, utilities, fleets, and facilities. If you want to learn more about how CMMS software can help improve your MRO inventory best practices strategy, we encourage you to schedule a free demo or contact the experts at LLumin to see how our CMMS+ software can help you reach your performance goals.