The maintenance function is responsible for the frequency and level of maintenance. They are responsible for the costs to maintain, which requires development of detailed budgets and control of costs to these budgets
The maintenance department is responsible and accountable for maintenance. It is responsible for the way equipment runs and looks and for the costs to achieve the required level of performance.
This is not to say that the operator has no responsibility for the use of equipment when in his hands – he does. The point is that responsibility and accountability must be assigned to a single function or person whether it be a mechanic or operator.
To split responsibility between maintenance or any other department where overlapping responsibility occurs is to establish an operation where no one is accountable.
Just as the quality function in an organization should report to the top manager, so does the maintenance function for the same obvious reasons. This allows maintenance problems to be dealt with in the best interest of the plant or company as a whole. Maintenance efforts and costs must not be manipulated as a means for another department to achieve its desired costs results.