Viapost industrial maintenance, a key element of logistics performance

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With its industrial maintenance solution, Viapost now offers the maintenance of logistics equipment, such as sorting, conveying, assembly and order preparation systems, telescopic handlers, OCR and video coding systems, to ensure continuity and improvement of production. Focus on this new activity.

What are the challenges of maintenance?

Martial Martin: To compensate for malfunctions, wear and tear or the obsolescence of logistics tools, we set up a preventive maintenance plan. This constant and periodic maintenance enables us to anticipate equipment failures. We therefore carry out daily, weekly, quarterly, bi-monthly or annual inspections according to the manufacturers' recommendations. These inspections can be visual, audible or via temperature and intensity measurements.


For example, we check sorter motors by measuring sound, temperature, oil and current to see if they are not overheating or damaged. We use specific tools: ammeters, digital thermometers, acoustic objects, electrical equipment, and vibration analysis (to analyse a bearing failure for example).

How do you diagnose the health of the equipment?

M.M.: We periodically carry out preventive inspection and control visits to check the equipment. Our technicians have a checklist to go through according to an established maintenance plan. If the technician notes any anomalies in our CMMS, a corrective action (adjustment, replacement, cleaning, etc.) is then programmed.

We also have a team of technical experts who carry out specific audits to analyse and diagnose problems.

How do you ensure the safety of your technicians?

M.M.: We start by detailing the PPE requirements for the job (gloves, goggles, cap), specific tools, and padlocks. The protective equipment is adapted to the task in hand.

What are your new maintenance solutions?

M.M.: We carry out preventive maintenance using vibration analysis with Prustechnick. For example, we bring carts driven by motors and wheels. We then put probes on the rolling tracks in order to detect premature wear of a bearing and determine a more precise zone to locate the faulty element and anticipate machine stoppages.


Furthermore, as IT maintenance is very difficult to detect, we frequently audit all our IT networks (industrial and between different equipment) such as Profinet or Profibus to check that the throughput is correct and that communications are good.
 

What pratical advice can you give to a maintenance technician?

M.M.: The first piece of advice is to always take the time to analyse the situation and to be safe. The second is to work with the right tool. The third is that the technician has preventive and proactive tasks. There is always a time when he has to research the manufacturer's documentation and understand their system. And the fourth is to understand the production issues and dialogue with the logistics teams who report anomalies to us. For example, in a parcel delivery area, if there is a breakdown, it means that X thousand customers will not receive their parcels on time. It is therefore important to be very reactive and to have a strong collaboration on a daily basis.

First and foremost, Viapost is a logistics company that does its own maintenance.
What are your added values compared to your competitors?

M. M.: First and foremost, Viapost is a logistics company which carries out its own maintenance. So we know how essential this famous collaboration between the maintenance technician and the production team is.

On the other hand, we have put the technician at the heart of our organisation. We support and train them on the technical solutions for which they are responsible in maintenance.

We have different training processes. On the one hand, the manufacturer comes to train our technicians on site. We also have our team of technical experts who are able to carry out this type of training on several systems. We also do tutoring and practical work with simulations.
The diversity of the equipment we maintain also allows us to offer them the opportunity, during their career, to work on a multitude of equipment and to progress to management positions.

In addition, we place ourselves at the exclusive service of logistics. Our employees are therefore focused and dedicated to this area.

What types of solutions do you offer to your clients?

M.M.: We offer three types of intervention:

> The service is provided in a shift system with maintenance technicians permanently located at the heart of our client's activity;
> Partial presence service: this means a combination of regular and occasional interventions according to the client's request;
> Finally, tailor-made services allow for flexibility with regard to the clients.

Our clients are the La Poste group (mail and parcel activities), DPD, Relais Colis, Mediapost, etc.

What are your maintenance recruitment needs?

M.M.: We are mainly looking for maintenance technicians but also team leaders and maintenance methods engineers. We are looking for autonomous professionals with a lot of experience and good interpersonal skills. They must also have good stress management skills.

How did you manage the COVID crisis?

M. M.: During this period, the explosion of e-commerce enabled us to maintain, and even increase, our activity with very little furlough or partial unemployment. This crisis has also demonstrated the strong commitment of our teams.

 

Maintenance & Entreprise - 01 february 2022

Interview by Valérie Brenugat

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