Understanding Maintenance Decisions: How to Support Acquisition of Capital Assets

Jorge E. Parada Puig, Rob J.I. Basten, Leo A.M. van Dongen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademicpeer-review


This chapter contributes with theoretical and practical insights on maintenance decision making during acquisition of capital assets. We give theoretical insights about maintenance decision making by reviewing the literature, while our practical insights come from examples of the decisions made at a maintenance organization for rolling stock: NedTrain. We find that strategic maintenance decisions are more relevant before contracting than tactical or operational decisions, and they have the largest potential to impact Life Cycle Costs. The research on strategic maintenance decisions is too broad to review individual decisions, and therefore we review papers that structure decisions in the form of frameworks. We find that according to the literature, assets and their maintenance services should be developed concurrently. However, we find in practice that NedTrain’s approach is to fit new assets into the existing maintenance services, while there are parallel continuous improvement processes for those services. From practice, we conclude that strategic maintenance decisions are not concurrent to rolling stock design decisions. We also conclude that there is a need for methods and tools to support strategic maintenance decision making during early stages of acquisition, especially before contracting.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThrough-life Engineering Services
Subtitle of host publicationMotivation, Theory, and Practice
EditorsLouis Redding, Rajkumar Roy
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-319-12111-6
ISBN (Print)978-3-319-12110-9
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Cite this