Downtime Costs Auto Industry $22k/Minute - Survey



Erin Vadala, Warner Communications, 978-468-3076 or
Christen Graham, Warner Communications, 207-829-6336 or

New survey of auto industry manufacturing executives shows stopped production costs an average $22,000 per minute
Manufacturers say they need better machine maintenance

PEORIA, Ill. (March 27, 2005) - In a survey of 101 manufacturing executives in the automotive industry, from parts suppliers to engine makers to automakers, a majority say the cost of stopped production is incredibly high - an average $22,000 per minute. A majority also say they would outsource production machine maintenance as a way to make their factories run better. The research was commissioned by Advanced Technology Services, Inc. (ATS) and conducted by Nielsen Research.

While one minute of stopped production, or downtime, costs an average of $22,000, some survey respondents cite the figure to be as high as $50,000 per minute. With such high costs at stake, keeping production machinery operating smoothly is critical to a factory's bottom line.

When executives were asked if they could outsource more factory services, which one would provide the most productivity gains, more than half- 53 percent - answered production machine maintenance. That function not only fixes broken production machinery, but also provides predictive and preventative maintenance that optimizes a factory's performance. Other areas they would outsource are tool room management and managing the spare parts storeroom.

ATS surveyed executives with titles of CEO, CIO, CFO, CTO and Executive Vice President, representing manufacturers across the automotive industry, with revenue from $10 million to more than $5 billion. The survey included motor vehicle parts manufacturers, engine and engine parts manufacturers, motor vehicle electrical and electronic equipment manufacturers, body and trailer manufacturers, automakers and more. The survey queried ways these manufacturers could achieve better productivity and profitability.

Manufacturers also answered with an overwhelming 70 percent that they would outsource a certain department or job function if it meant they no longer had the responsibility for searching for and recruiting skilled workers. In survey results released earlier, a majority said they anticipate the cost of a shortage in skilled workers will cost an average $50 million per company, across the industry.

ATS pioneered the factory asset service business two decades ago, and today is the leading company providing managed services for production equipment maintenance, industrial parts repair and IT infrastructure support for manufacturers. Key to ATS' success is a recruitment and training program that fulfills the need for a skilled workforce. In addition ATS' white paper, The Guide to Increased Asset Performance through Outsourcing Production Maintenance, provides guidance on what companies can do to increase their asset performance through the outsourcing of production maintenance. Visit to obtain a copy.

ATS customers who have benefited from significantly increased factory productivity, skilled labor fulfillment and improved competitiveness include Nissan, Textron (NYSE: TXT), Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE: CAT), Eaton (NYSE: ETN ), Fortune Brands (NYSE:FO), Honeywell (NYSE: HON) , Honda Motor Company (NYSE: HMC), Magneti Marelli and other manufacturing leaders.

About ATS:
ATS makes factories run better. Advanced Technology Services, Inc. (ATS) improves productivity and profitability for many of the world's most respected manufacturers through the managed services of production equipment maintenance, information technology and spare parts repair. Founded in 1985, ATS employs over 1,500 people across the US and is a member of the National Association of Manufacturers. ATS is headquartered in Peoria, IL with offices and services centers located in Greenville, SC, and Detroit, MI. For more information, visit the ATS Web site at

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