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What is it all about?

Creating the perfect balance between spare parts availability, working capital, and operational costs is a challenge in any maintenance environment. On this course you will be encouraged to control your maintenance and asset management spend by streamlining your spare parts processes and practices. This course uses state of the art, but simple illustrations, combined with practical methods and concepts to empower you in the workplace.

Spare parts management is a critical key performance area within asset management. The availability of spare parts for maintenance and repairs is crucial for the uptime and effectiveness of assets, but high spare parts availability comes at a cost. The challenge is to effectively balance spare parts availability, working capital and operational costs.

Classification of your spare parts is an important concept and in this course we investigate the most commonly used inventory control techniques. We will look at the importance of your spare parts management strategy and the shop floor processes required to control the store such as re-order levels and re-order quantities.

Classroom discussions, case studies and practical illustrations will be used to convey concepts that might otherwise seem complex. Expert facilitators demystify the theory for application, by learners, in their own environment.

Who should attend?

  • Procurement officers
  • Stores managers
  • Tactical planners
  • Inventory controllers
  • Logistics engineers

What makes it different?

At the end of the course learners will be able to:

  • classify spare parts according to criticality
  • define inventory control techniques per classification
  • interpret and forecast demand patterns
  • choose appropriate spare parts control mechanisms
  • calculate spare parts control parameters
  • use the technique of management by exception
  • apply basic analysis techniques, such as a Pareto analysis.

Course outline

Understanding the spare parts environment

Learners are provided with an overview of the contemporary spare parts management environment. Subjects covered are:

  • spare parts logistics vs other industries
  • industry specific challenges (interactive)
  • common practices for inventory management of spare parts
  • conflicting roles and responsibilities in typical organisations
  • the key challenge / optimisation criteria
  • the impact of organisational maturity levels.

Classifying spare parts

How to obtain and remain focused on managing and optimising the spare part assortments :

  • smart problem solving using Pareto analysis
  • optimisation criteria
  • classification techniques
  • different approaches to spare parts planning strategies (wholesale, lean, clean and just in case)
  • service level differentiation.

Demand characteristics and statistics

Which demand do we have to deliver from stock? When should we make use of statistics to determine parameters? In this module learners review:

  • calculation of statistical parameters (eg mean and standard deviation)
  • statistical stock control
  • exception management
  • the logic of frequency distributions
  • mathematical demand distributions (eg normal distribution, Poisson distribution).


In this module we consider how to interpret the stochastic dynamics in demand patterns and how to manage them. We also learn which demand forecasting techniques we use in specific situations. We look at how to compare and use the results having considered the following:

  • forecasting methods for fast and medium movers (eg moving average, smoothing methods)
  • forecasting methods for slow movers
  • selection optimal forecasting method
  • rules of thumb as tool for interpretation
  • necessity of cleaning demand data.

Inventory control mechanisms

How do we structure and calculate inventory parameters? And how do we make smart stock decisions in single stock point situations? This module covers:

  • material resource planning
  • calculation of reorder point and reorder quantities.


Open book assessment.

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