A Multicriteria Preventive Maintenance Approach and Its Application in the After-Sales Service of a Truck and Bus Company
Providing customer satisfaction has critical significance for companies that give service in automotive industry in terms of enhancing company’s prestige and consequently, increasing company’s profit by expanding customer volume. The problem of being stranded on the road as a result of an unexpected failure leads to not being able to give timely service, and consequently, customer dissatisfaction. Considering the criticality of time nowadays, especially for vehicles that transport food products, passengers or ammunition, not being stranded on the road as a result of failure is very valuable in terms of delivering the transported products timely. In this study, a multiple criteria preventive maintenance approach was developed to minimize the stated problem. Within the scope of preventive maintenance implementation, giving maintenance service to vehicles before they become stranded on the road and increasing customer satisfaction were planned. For this purpose, firstly determining vehicle parts that have critical importance that can make customers stranded on the road, and then comprehensively analyzing failure probabilities of these vehicle parts, forming the preventive maintenance plan and informing customers based on the results were aimed. Critical parts were determined by Multiple Criteria Decision Making (MCDM) approaches. Then, for each critical part, failure probability distributions and parameters were determined, and probabilities of being stranded on the road for vehicles were evaluated with respect to determined factors. When forming preventive maintenance plans, customer cost, company cost, capacity usage of authorized vehicle service and other probable factors were considered and most appropriate ones were used in the study. This proposed multiple criteria preventive maintenance approach was implemented on a truck and bus company in Ankara that aims to develop new preventive maintenance strategies with the intent of increasing customer satisfaction. By investigating detailed data gathered from past years, firstly critical parts were determined for preventive maintenance. Then, service and roadside assistance data on the basis of vehicles for these parts were investigated and statistical analyses on reliabilities of parts were performed. By results of these analyses, alternative maintenance plans were formed considering factors like cost and service capacity. This study aims to become a guide for the implemented company and other companies in automotive industry in developing preventive maintenance plans that have higher customer satisfaction.