Is There a Way to Reduce MRO Costs?



For logistics managers, finding ways of controlling their maintenance, repair and operating or MRO costs is a full-time job in itself. To compound on that, they also have to do so all without compromising quality, safety, or customer service levels! 

However, so long as you plan, organize, and effectively allocate your resources, you will find MRO expense planning much easier and more practical than you may have previously thought.

This is what we’ll dive into today.

In this blog post, we’ll outline a few of the practical ways to reduce MRO costs, without compromising your ability to manufacture, practice safety or serve your customers. We will also explain the facts about MRO inventory, including providing some helpful best practices for maintaining inventory levels.


Why is MRO Inventory a Critical Business Practice?

There is a lot that goes into maintaining MRO inventory beyond simply keeping count of supplies.

Those materials used to provide basic repairs on equipment or to keep your facility clean from bacteria and cross-contamination in food processing help the business maintain operational efficiency throughout the year. 

This is a major reason why companies that operate a supply chain spend a lot of time and money developing the best practices or finding the best tools for helping them to keep inventory levels strong. 

For those not completely aware, MRO stands for Maintenance, Repair, and Operations. This is in reference to the supplies or materials used to maintain operation. It’s the parts used for routine maintenance, the tools needed to complete the work, and the supplies for clean-up.

There are generally three different categories that factor into MRO inventory:



The predictive maintenance or repair is designed to reduce the potential of future damage, extend the lifespan of equipment, or save costs on the consumption of resources. This is more common in transportation and manufacturing businesses where investments in extending equipment capability are a popular practice. 



Most companies in the logistics space understand how damaging broken equipment can be in daily operations. To reduce this potential, preventative maintenance service from changing spark plugs to emissions systems filters is absolutely crucial. 



The final step of MRO maintenance is corrective. This happens when equipment has been damaged and is out of service. While many logistics company’s partner up with repair companies, there are many who complete this service in house. Supplies can range from the replacement parts to that used in clean-up or supporting roles, such as lubricants, gaskets, and more. 


How to Reduce MRO Inventory Costs

So, now we come to the meat and potato section - how to reduce costs on MRO inventory.

Like any other inventory control system, saving money typically breaks down to a three-step process – plan, optimize, and organize. 

Here are three simple ways that any logistics or supply chain business can streamline their MRO inventory programs, reduce their overall costs, and without compromising the ability to maintain operational and customer enhancement. 


Invest in Fleet Management Platforms

One of the biggest areas of MRO inventory costs paying for repairs.

To reduce this expense, staying on top of routine service and replacing inexpensive parts that are designed to wear out before they create major damage is your very first step. A robust fleet management software (FMS) solution that helps you connect with equipment manufacturers, update service records, schedule routine maintenance, and circle inventory in and out of service is a solid way to reduce costs. 


Keep It Clean, Neat, and Straight

Sometimes the simple act of cleaning equipment can reduce the potential of major damage.

As such, consider spending a little more on cleaning supplies, and investing time to train equipment operators on how to correctly keep these mechanical assets clean, neat, and organized. This also applies to your warehouse floor. Debris can cause warehouse accidents, which also tends to eat up those MRO supplies when equipment has become damaged due to the debris.


Consult with a 3PL

Experienced third-party logistics companies strive to enhance the operational efficiency of their supply chain clients. One area of expertise is improving MRO inventory control programs that helps them save money on materials, by working with better vendors who can offer reduce costs on supplies. They can also help clients with optimizing their fleet management and maintenance solutions. 

If you’re looking to save MRO costs, contact a proven 3PL like Redwood Logistics!