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Improving Decision-Making Grid based on interdependence among failures with a case study in the steel industry

Arash Shahin (Department of Management, University of Isfahan, Isfahan, Iran)
Ashraf Labib (Department of Operations and Systems Management, Faculty of Business and Law, University of Portsmouth, Portsmouth, UK)
Soroosh Emami (Department of Management, University of Isfahan, Isfahan, Iran)
Mahdi Karbasian (Department of Industrial Engineering, Malek-e-Ashtar University of Technology, Shahinshahr, Iran)

The TQM Journal

ISSN: 1754-2731

Article publication date: 30 November 2018

Issue publication date: 12 March 2019




Decision-Making Grid (DMG) is used for determining maintenance tactics and is associated with the reliability and risk management of assets. In this grid, decision making is performed based on two indicators of Mean Time to Repair (MTTR) and frequency of failures. The purpose of this paper is to improve DMG by recognizing interdependence among failures.


Fault Tree Analysis and Reliability Block Diagram have been applied for improving DMG. The proposed approach has been examined on eight equipment of the steel making and continuous casting plant of Mobarakeh Steel Company.


Findings indicate different positions of equipment in the cells of the new grid compared to the basic grid.

Research limitations/implications

DMG is limited to two criteria of frequency of failures and MTTR values. In both basic and new DMGs, cost analysis has not been performed. The application of the proposed approach will help the reliability/maintenance engineers/analysts/managers to allocate more suitable maintenance tactics to equipment. This, in turn, will enhance the equipment life cycle and availability as the main objectives of physical asset management.


A major limitation of basic DMG is that the determined tactic based on these two indicators might not be an appropriate solution in all conditions, particularly when failures are interdependent. This has been resolved in this paper.



Shahin, A., Labib, A., Emami, S. and Karbasian, M. (2019), "Improving Decision-Making Grid based on interdependence among failures with a case study in the steel industry", The TQM Journal, Vol. 31 No. 2, pp. 167-182.



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