MaintMaster blog - 17 October 2019

Why do we categorize?

Why do we categorize?

Everything in MaintMaster is categorized and we always talk about this during our training courses. But why do we think categories are so important? Well, it’s for the simple reason that categories help us to maintain order. We categorize in our life every day, perhaps without being aware of it, so why shouldn’t we also categorize in our maintenance system?

You might create several different documents in one day, and you save them on your computer. I guess you have a system for where you save the documents so you can find them easily. True?
Another clear example of categorization can be found in grocery shops. No matter which store you enter (name some stores) you know you’ll find the milk in the fridge, and certainly also yogurt and cream nearby.

If we stick to the milk, a sub-category is also used, in MaintMaster we call it types. There can be several types of a category.

In the case of milk:
– Category: Dairy
– Type: Milk, Cream, Yoghurt

Another example:
– Category: Furniture
– Type: Table, Chair

When you set up categories and types in MaintMaster, there are rules of conduct. Creating new categories for everything does not solve any problems, instead it creates them.

Generally, to consider:

  1. As few categories as possible – try to find a common category for most parts, without creating yet another
  2. Needs and benefits should always form your decision – if there is a need to create a new category or a new type, you should do so, of course, but make sure you can see the benefits

A category should show:
What machine it is – not what it does (site object)
– For example, a lathe should be included in the category machine and the type lathe, not in the type of lathes
– For example, a car should be included in the category of vehicles, not in the category of movement

What it is for spare part – not what it does or is used for (item/ spare parts)
– A lamp should be included in the category electrical component, not in lit
– Oil should be included in the category lubricant, not lubricates

Do you have any other thoughts or views on categorization? Feel free to contact us!