Rik Plattel

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Do Things Better Each Day

Rik is the creator and expert in DORA – Dynamic Operational Reliability Analyser. Creating a new standard of maintenance plan.

His engineering career started with ships, but he has worked in a variety of commercial positions including: in SKF as an application engineer, as a service manager, maintenance manager and production manager at Superfoss Packaging.

Rik’s passion is to run processes with the focus on stability, reliability and continuity. He tells us “At sea it was a good feeling when the engine room was running like clockwork, doing what it should do. As the maintenance manager, my focus was to implement a preventative maintenance plan, so asset management was part of my professional life. As production manager I found that a pure asset focus is so ‘Old School’ and that most factors that influence reliability, availability and cost effectiveness of efficient production processes are created by people. That was in the early 90s, but it has not changed much since then.

It is Rik’s dream to inspire all those people out there to take the right steps at the right moment to do and make things “Better Each Day”.

Rik resides in Holland and runs the European Reliability Centre and has a dedicated team supporting and developing DORA.

To help you understand Rik more and better, you should read his ‘story’ which articulates his passions, background, thoughts, learned opinions and ambitions. He’s an inspirational and intelligent guy, infectious and funny too.

In the mid 80s, the personal computer came into our lives. At work it was installed in the finance department and it took some 10 years before the PC was also introduced into the technical, production, logistics and raw materials departments. In those 10 years the development of hardware and software was very much influenced by finance.

Now in 2017 we still work with that historical approach. Financial management can not do what knowledge management can do. Increasing reliability of processes is not influenced by money, but by knowledge of processes.

The vertical approach of finance does not effectively assist the horizontal approach of reliability optimisation.

Each production and maintenance expert knows that over 70% of all factors that influence process efficiency is caused by people. And yet most Maintenance Plans are all about assets. What is going wrong here? Should we not maintain our procedures, should we not maintain knowledge about how the process should work? Do we need Operators or Automatons? Should they only push some buttons because someone told them, or should they operate a process that is an interaction of people, procedures and assets?

Reliable production processes are mostly influenced by facilitating continuous improvement knowledge of the processes, failures, experiences, etc. The only way to optimise reliability is to understand all mechanisms that influence efficiency of those processes.

Maintenance is much more than just the technical aspects. Maintenance should optimise ALL FACTORS that influence efficiency of processes. Stop maintaining the pump. Stop the asset approach. Maintain the 300 litres/minute. Maintain the functions!

John Moubray taught me some lessons. We had a lot of discussions and he was able to convince me. Not only in his training but also at the bar, in the park, in the car – John was always working on continuous improvement of knowledge of RCM. That was fascinating and it opened my eyes. With my technical and operational background, I found the answers when I started to understand how to communicate using RCM definitions.

It was the foundation to understand how to influence all of the mechanisms to improve reliability, availability and cost effectiveness. And the worldwide RCM standards SAE JA1011 and SAE JA1012 helped a lot. (Available on www.sae.org).

These standards were used to train people. The standards were part of the Level 1 and Level 2 RCM courses used to teach companies how to influence stable, reliable and continuously improving processes.

The SAE JA 1011/12 RCM standard is for Reliability Professionals and it is the best methodology available. When you work so long and so detailed with RCM as I did, you will continuously get more and more respect for those guys who developed RCM. Nowlan and Heap, John Moubray, Chris James. They inspired me a lot.

About DORA – Dynamic Operational Reliability Analyser (www.k2rcm.co.uk/dora)

In 1999 I made my first software solution in Excel. Later this was called DORA 1. Some years later I talked to an operator who knew something about Microsoft Access and together we developed DORA 2.

We developed from RCM2 to Dynamic RCM, because dynamic production processes should rely on dynamic maintenance plans. Static maintenance plans will decrease efficiency.

Then two large multinational production companies became interested when I taught them Dynamic RCM. They paid for a professional version of DORA 3 that was able to be used in the production lines. And now in 2017, DORA is still used in large production companies.

In 2015 the financial crisis seemed to change and I decided to create a workgroup of 16 production, maintenance & reliability professionals from all parts of the industry. Some came over to our office regularly and with some I was talking on Skype, phone, email. All of them had CMMSs like SAP PM, JD Edwards, Maximo, Infor, IVARA and others and ALL of those guys wanted to improve, because the vertical approach of the CMMSs did not help at all.

On September 1, 2016, DORA 4 was operational and was immediately bought by a multinational with over 120 production companies in over 100 countries.

Rik’s Passions

Building my company – the European Reliability Centre B.V. (ERC) – www.ercbv.eu

Development of e-learning to train operators and engineers in > 64 countries. Production sites learn how they can develop their own production handbook and train their people. We train the trainers and facilitate the e-learning processes.

Development of DORA 1-2-3-4, and the Dynamic RCM.

Proven Experience

In 2007, one of my clients had a total downtime of 51,000 (fifty one thousand) minutes a year in all production areas. At the end of 2014 is decreased to 1,900 (nineteen hundred) minutes a year.

One other client was able to create new maintenance programmes and decreased the maintenance budget by 42%.


Focus on all of the areas that influences stable, reliable and continuously improving processes.

The result is cost effectiveness, but cost benefit is only the start. Building a knowledge base, having greater awareness of the processes and everything that affects them and training your workforce are investments that will bring great gains other than financial.

Focus on “Do Things Better Each Day”.

Stop with the asset approach! Start the process approach. Get yourself trained in RCM to the level you need and use DORA software (www.dorasoftware.com) to ensure that your company and all of your colleagues can be consistent in developing your own success.

We will continue to add new functionalities to DORA. With DORA 3 we gathered a lot a experience using PLC data and in DORA 4 we will continue to optimise data and process mining functionalities to predict downtime, failures and use of spares.

The continuously growing DORA community will be a Reliability network, running like clockwork. And they will share knowledge to multiply success for everyone.

Ultimately, our intent is to have a strong DORA partner network so we can use our collective, combined and shared experiences to assist each other to get the job done.