Lift Rental: How to Lower the Cost Per Job

By Thomas A. Westerkamp  
OTHER PARTS OF THIS ARTICLEPt. 1: Seven Questions for Lift SpecificationPt. 2: This Page

Armed with answers to these questions, managers are closer to starting the process of finding the most appropriate lift equipment. But first, they have several additional issues to consider to maximize the investment of time and money.

To lower the cost per job, managers can combine several overhead jobs and schedule them simultaneously. The goal is to justify the transport cost from the rental agency to user site by fully using the aerial lift platform while it is on site. This means having several different projects ready to start when the unit arrives.

To ensure selection of the most appropriate lift for the various purposes, managers must consider the range of maintenance and engineering tasks that require accessing difficult-to-reach locations. Then they can select the aerial lift that can accommodate the worst conditions at each site — largest height, longest reach, largest load, etc. — that form a perfect storm of challenging applications and conditions.

Among the strategies to achieve this goal are these:

  • Search the department's computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) database and completed work orders to identify hardest-to-reach job sites
  • Review work orders to determine if technicians used special lift equipment.
  • Tour the job sites to evaluate the conditions.
  • Watch workers operate the particular aerial lift in locations similar to the planned site.
  • Evaluate the job sites and applications using the seven questions above.
  • Use a combination of the most demanding criteria to compile the list of specifications for the desired aerial lift platform.

The nature of the work also can dictate the type of lift equipment managers need. Interior, periodic tasks, such as cleaning windows, re-lamping, cleaning high-bay areas, and painting, generally require scissor lifts.

Other repair work to consider includes: piping projects; upgrades and additions to lighting and electrical-distribution systems; shut-down work technicians must complete when occupants are away, including paint jobs in heavily used areas and repairs of electrical components in high-bay areas; outdoor tasks, including cleaning transformers and insulators at the electrical service entrance and painting the boiler stack; project work, including roof repairs and replacements, installing rooftop ventilation, heating, and cooling equipment; and building expansions.

Finally, managers must make sure an easy-to-access location exists for storing the equipment's operator-safety checklist. Each operator must know the location and use the checklist for every task. The checklist should include a walk-around inspection, a worksite assessment, a functional test of the unit, and safe operation reminders.

Thomas A. Westerkamp is a maintenance management consultant and CEO and managing partner of Productivity Network Innovations LLC.

Continue Reading: Lift Specification Guidelines

Seven Questions for Lift Specification

Lift Rental: How to Lower the Cost Per Job

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  posted on 3/30/2010   Article Use Policy

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