Inspectioneering Journal

Are Your FEMI KPIs Getting Old and Stale?

By John Reynolds, Principal Consultant at Intertek. This article appears in the July/August 2017 issue of Inspectioneering Journal.

What are your Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) (a.k.a. metrics) for your Fixed Equipment Mechanical Integrity (FEMI) program(1)?   Does your KPI list consist primarily of the tired old list of overdue inspections that are successfully tracking zeros month after month, year after year? Perhaps it’s time to freshen it up. You’ve probably heard that old saying that “you can’t improve what you don’t measure.” It’s half true, since we of course make a lot of improvements in our business that are not directly related to measurements – but that’s a topic for another day. Let’s assume for the moment that it’s true and that we need to make improvements in our FEMI program by having the best set of FEMI KPIs possible. Do you have an effective set of comprehensive FEMI KPIs at your site? Are you convinced that your diverse set of FEMI KPIs has actually resulted in continuing improvement in your FEMI program? If not, here are some FEMI KPIs that you might consider tracking and trending in order to monitor your progress.

Overdue Inspections and Inspection Work Requests

As I mentioned in the introduction above, most sites track overdue inspections, and thankfully most sites now are tracking overdue inspections at zero or near zero for long periods of time. That of course is good because it certainly was not true a decade or more ago. But I find that in many cases the overdue inspection KPIs are misleading and incomplete, and as such not really revealing the true “overdue” situation. Too many sites lump all or most of their overdue inspections into one or two KPIs and are not measuring all their truly overdue inspections. Hence, I find that it is far better to have an overdue inspection KPI for pressure vessels, piping circuits, aboveground storage tanks (AST) and pressure relief valves (PRV) (all separate KPIs), and then further segregated into overdue internal inspections, overdue external inspections, and overdue on-stream (e.g., thickness measurement) inspections. That way you end up with a much better measurement of how many inspections are truly overdue. Additionally, if you have an effective inspection deferral process in accordance with API 510 and 570, then it may be worthwhile to track inspection deferrals to make sure the deferral process is not being over-used or abused.

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