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SMEs are global engines of growth and innovation, constituting 99% of all businesses and employing over 60% of the workforce. However, reports indicate that 67% of SMEs face challenges in embracing digital technologies for transformation, necessitating ongoing support for resilience and growth. Total productive maintenance (TPM) is a potent management technique, offering SMEs a path to comprehensive, continuous optimization of production and maintenance with the active involvement of the entire workforce. As SMEs attempt to recover in the postpandemic economy, TPM tools and methods can bolster their resilience and productive capabilities.
The National Productivity Organisation of Bangladesh hosted a training course on TPM for SMEs, 30 October–3 November, in Dhaka, for 21 participants from 11 APO members, comprising SME CEOs, business and industry association representatives, and trainers and consultants specializing in production and maintenance management in the manufacturing sector. The course gave a comprehensive overview of TPM techniques and systematic methods for implementation in SMEs.
Two resource persons from Japan and Malaysia made presentations introducing the concept and eight pillars of TPM, along with insights into effective implementation steps. They also led discussions on how to incorporate advanced Industry 4.0 technologies and digitalization initiatives into TPM practices for enhanced productivity. In addition to building the capacity of SMEs to deal with unpredictable situations, learning from the training course will contribute to increasing national productivity levels and employment opportunities throughout the APO membership.