Fleet planners face the challenges of complex and dynamic planning.
They must schedule a large number of maintenance tasks and need to regularly combine ongoing depth maintenance with important modification programs and capability upgrades – and possibly life extensions. Achieving an optimal fleet schedule minimizing time in maintenance and maximizing fleet readiness is the key goal.
There are invariably constraints that must be factored into the schedule. The fleet planner must ensure that there is space in a facility, and the required kit and specialist tools are available at the right time in the right place.
They may have to consider whether the work is funded, or the forward commitments of the fleet. Regardless of these constraints, the fleet planner must balance the smooth utilization of costly resources against their fleet readiness target.
The task of multi-objective/multi-constraint planning is hard enough, but the fleet planner faces the additional challenge of dynamic events – a central feature of the aftermarket. They need the planning support to deal with changing requirements: unscheduled arisings, emerging technical issues and changing operational tempo.
This is where Aerogility can really help.
How Aerogility can help
Using Aerogility the fleet planner will have the capability to develop an optimal plan in a series of iterations. With each of the iterations they can factor-in the constraints while keeping visible the critical key performance indicators – fleet readiness levels, resource utilization, and costs.
The first version is based on a simulation of all the scheduled maintenances to be applied to the fleet over the next 1–3 years. Aerogility will generate the KPI and charts, as well as a clear Gantt chart showing the availability of maintenance slots and the operational status of the fleet.
In the second iteration, the fleet planner creates another what-if scenario scheduling the required modification programs. Goals and constraints can be added to the scenario – for example, combining tasks where possible, utilizing a specific facility for a modification task, or completing the modifications by a target calendar date. The output from the simulation will show how the plan works - highlighting the bottlenecks and unacceptable drops in fleet readiness levels. The fleet planner can make adjustments to the scenario until the optimal balance is achieved.
As a further verification of the schedule, the fleet planner can ‘switch-on’ unscheduled events and asses the risk of unscheduled arisings disrupting the modification programs and reducing fleet readiness levels. With this information the fleet planner can take steps in the final scenario to mitigate these risks and reduce the likelihood of costly disruptions to the plan.
As a final step, the fleet planner can share the schedule with all the other stakeholders and get the necessary approvals and sign-off before committing the plan into the operational process.