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Mechanics need this skill to succeed

SEO 2021 | September 19, 2017

Proficiency in preventative maintenance indicates to prospective employers that you're prepared to keep up in a more mechanized industry.

The Importance of Preventative Maintenance for Mechanics

According to CareerBuilder research, only 5 percent of maintenance mechanics list preventative maintenance as a skill on their resumes, despite the fact that employers consider this an important qualification. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment for maintenance mechanics is expected to grow 16 percent by 2024, much faster than the national average. This is most likely because of increased production and the use of more sophisticated factory technologies.

Mechanics need this skill to succeed

What is preventative maintenance?

The General Services Administration defines preventative maintenance as running regular checks and tests on machinery to ensure that no major technical issues are at risk of occurring. Preventative maintenance requires an understanding of how different components of each machine work, as well as knowing which tests to run to figure out whether or not a machine is running smoothly — or about to fail.

What are preventative maintenance best practices?

Preventative maintenance will look slightly different for every company since machines and procedures will vary. However, there are common practices to ensure any workplace avoids unnecessary and costly repairs to machinery.

Preventative maintenance involves regular visual checks as well as running routine tests on machinery to catch problems before they result in system failure. As a primary concern, preventative maintenance should never be invasive to production — the last thing a manufacturer wants is for their machinery to be down for an extensive period of time. Large amounts of downtime for simple routine checks could decrease the productivity of your workplace much more than a broken machine would.

Examples of procedures performed during downtime checks include:

  • Oil changes, lubrication and minor adjustments
  • Developing thorough checklists
  • Recording observations in an organized manner

Depending on your position within a firm, you'll either be following and improving upon preventative maintenance practices already in place or helping the company develop their own, so it's important to be proficient.

The outcomes of proper preventative maintenance extend beyond machines that run smoother and cleaner: High standards of preventative maintenance can reduce energy consumption, produce more reliable or higher quality products and increase safety levels for other workers.

What does preventative maintenance knowledge look like on your resume?

Now that you have an idea of how important preventative maintenance is as a mechanic, tailor your work experience to specify your knowledge on your resume. Have you had to run quality checks or tune-ups at a previous job? Was there a time in your previous position where you were able to fix a problem (or prevent one from occurring entirely) by thinking ahead and developing a careful plan? List specific instances rather than broad generalizations to convey your skills and experience.

Having preventative maintenance experience can also help you showcase your soft skills – something that’s not always easy to articulate on a resume. These include: attention to detail (in carefully carrying out routine tests), foresight and logic (since you anticipate problems before they happen), and self-motivation (as you take initiative to reduce the risk of errors or accidents).

Preventative maintenance skills can make the difference between an adequate applicant in a crowded job pool and an extremely qualified one that a company can't afford to pass on. Don’t let your knowledge and experience go to waste — take the time to detail preventative maintenance skills on your resume.

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