Using technologies such as predictive maintenance software could help save UK manufacturers more than £180bn each year by significantly reducing preventable machine downtime.

This is according to “comprehensive research” commissioned by field service management company Oneservice, which exposes the cost and time implications associated with traditional current machine maintenance methods.

There are 133,000 manufacturers in the UK, contributing a total of £6.7 trillion to the global economy. According to industry senior business leaders, the overwhelming causes of machine downtime are internal technical faults and ageing, unreliable machinery.

However, Oneservice claims that almost all instances (94 per cent) could be prevented through harnessing readily available technologies, such as predictive maintenance software.

Using machine learning algorithms and data collected from sensors on machines to monitor performance 24/7, the company’s software analyses and learns when and how a machine will fail and then triggers remedial actions to get operatives equipped and on-site before the failure occurs.

“Whilst unsurprising, it is truly shocking to see the scale of losses businesses endure due to machine downtime,” chief executive Chris Proctor said.

“It is clear that existing maintenance processes aren’t working and the time has come for predictive methods to become the norm – not the exception.

"I hope that in light of these findings, businesses can take control of machine downtime and ensure they are working to deliver the best possible service for their customers.”