• Packaging Corporation of America

    We solve even the toughest cases.

    erc045-070vg-ps-150After reviewing lift truck purchase orders, Chuck Zirretta of Packaging Corporation of America (PCA), realized that there was substantial financial waste in the way that PCA’s 600 lift trucks were serviced, maintained and operated.  

    Founded in 1959 by the consolidation of the Central Fiber Products Company, the American Box Board Company and the Ohio Boxboard Company, PCA is the fifth largest producer of container board and corrugated packaging products in the United States. With sales of $2.44 billion in 2010, PCA operates four paper mills and 68 corrugated products plants in 26 states across the U.S.

    Solution Details

    Challenge

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    Chuck Zirretta, director of purchasing for PCA, decided to put his maintenance background to the test by reviewing PCA’s purchase orders to see what lift trucks were purchased and at what time. He realized that there was substantial financial waste in the way that PCA’s 600 lift trucks were serviced, maintained and operated. The question that remained in his mind was how to maximize lift truck productivity while minimizing maintenance costs.

    Solution

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    In order to monitor maintenance spend, PCA teamed with Reikes to implement a pilot maintenance and operator monitoring program at their Omaha corrugating facility in 2009. Omaha was selected because the plant had a good maintenance program already in place. As a result, they were easily able to access past years’ maintenance spends for their four ERC120HH electric lift trucks and two GP135VX liquid propane lift trucks. 

    PCA took the pressure off of the Omaha plant performing their own preventative and regular fleet maintenance by delegating the responsibility to Reikes. 

    “The Fleet Maintenance program’s fixed rate is a big advantage to our company because we know exactly what we’re going to spend,” said Zirretta. “By having a Reikes’ maintenance manager take care of any wear and tear issue that may arise, our employees can focus on getting their job done.” 

    To address the issue of excessive lift truck damage or abuse, not covered under the Fleet Maintenance program, PCA and Riekes instituted an operator monitoring program. The impact monitor system examines lift truck operator abuse and reinforces operator accountability. With 100 percent of its lift truck fleet leased so that equipment can be changed out on a regular basis, accountability is very important to PCA.

    “The economic life of a lift truck is 10,000 hours and our lift truck lease terms are based on usage,” said Zirretta. “If our lift trucks are used eight hours per day and 2,000 hours per shift over one year, then we lease them for five years. If their hours increase to 2,500 or 3,000 per year, then we reduce our lease term to four or three years respectively.”

    Impact

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    Since implementing the pilot maintenance and operator monitoring programs three years ago, the Omaha plant has realized a savings to date of approximately $40,000-$50,000. PCA is confident that their total savings has increased due to operator accountability and the resulting minimization of repair costs. “I personally have a 25-year relationship with Yale® lift trucks, but PCA has undergone many acquisitions—and, as a result, inherited various lift truck brands,” said Zirretta.

    “PCA decided that Yale was the best partner to do business with because of the strength of their dealer network, their commitment to our business, and the way that they conduct business themselves. Today, 95 percent of our lift truck fleet is Yale.”

    As a result of the Omaha plant’s success, four additional PCA facilities have adopted the pilot maintenance and operator

    monitoring programs. “Once the end result from one facility takes hold, the success catches like wildfire,” said Zirretta. “We are currently talking with one of our Northeast area managers whose facility is interested in instituting these programs to minimize maintenance costs and maximize potential savings.”

    What Our Customers Are Saying

    PCA decided that Yale was the best partner to do business with because of the strength of their dealer network, their commitment to our business, and the way that they conduct business themselves. Today, 95 percent of our lift truck fleet is Yale.
    Chuck Zirretta - Packaging Corporation of AmericaOmaha, Nebraska
    We are currently talking with one of our Northeast area managers whose facility is interested in instituting these programs to minimize maintenance costs and maximize potential savings.
    Chuck Zirretta - Packaging Corporation of AmericaOmaha, Nebraska

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