There is much that goes into maintaining a company or facility — it’s a major responsibility, without a doubt. The fact is that many don’t even take into account the work, effort, and expertise that go into reliably running a company. Not only do you have to be focused and sure — you also need to be properly trained. Some of the elements that go into running a facility or company include engineering expertise, maintenance experience, and great organizational skills. You should be able to assess risk, inspire confidence in employees, and focus on the issues at hand. This isn’t a general task — in fact, there are many companies that provide training programs and tests in order to better maintain their facilities. With the right training, a good leader can better maintain the integrity of assets, and ensure the continued reliability of the company in question. The training involved has a specific name — API training. “API” in this case stands for the American Petroleum Institute, as the companies to which this training applies work in the petroleum industry. It’s vital that petroleum companies in particular take this training seriously, as a compromised petroleum facility can be a major hazard for people and the environment alike. Let’s look into API training and the topics surrounding it.
The API 580: What It Is, And What It Involves
One of the most important aspects of API training is the API 580. This practice is recommended to petroleum companies, and it was developed and published by the API. This certification validates the knowledge of qualified professionals. It’s quite beneficial, not only in that it assures the professional who has taken the API 580 that they are indeed qualified to handle things like asset reliability and asset integrity — it also makes them a more promising candidate to potential employers. The certification is long-lasting, remaining good for a total of three years. Who qualifies for the API 580? Well, anyone who is certified in the API 510, API 570, or the API 653 is automatically qualified to take the API 58 exam. Otherwise, qualification is based on a combination of your level of education and industry experience acquired within the last 10 years. If you have a BS in engineering or technology, for example, you require on year of experience. A two year degree or certificate in engineering and technology requires two years of experience. A high school diploma or the equivalent requires three years of experience. And finally, a person with no formal education would require five years of experience or more, understandably. All of this coincides with training in an RCM program, particularly if you want to be a professional on a corporate level.
What Is RCM?
RCM is reliability centered maintenance. This is a corporate-level maintenance strategy that is meant to optimize the maintenance program of a company or facility. Ideally, the RCM process is meant to implement a specific maintenance strategy on each of the assets of a facility. Ideally, the company will be able to maintain a cost-effective strategy that is at the same time highly productive. In total, an RCM strategy has four principles. The first is that the main objective is to maintain system function. The second is that identity failure modes can affect the system function in some way. The third is to prioritize the failure modes, in conjunction with the second principle. Finally, the fourth principle is to select the proper, applicable tasks to control those failure modes. Clearly, much emphasis is placed on failure modes, and with good reason. By utilizing these four principles and applying RCM design, a facility can produce more effectively, and at a better cost.
Remember that as a professional in the petroleum industry, you owe it to yourself to achieve certain level of certification. Not only will what you learn make your job easier — it will also better your ability to be hired.
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