Can a Reliability Engineer or Reliability Manager make a facility or organization reliable? This is a very important question that may be worth discussing within your organization to ensure proper expectations and success.
A more practical definition of reliability may be:
Equipment performs the way you want it to when you want it to”.
Reliability is very easy to define, stuff but achievement of this simple goal is complex and unfortunately unattainable for many organizations. Reliability requires a holistic approach that involves the complex interaction of Maintenance, see Operations, Supply Chain, Engineering, Procurement, Management, Process and Vendors. Consistency, focus and strategic implementation directly correlates to the success of any effort and this is true for your reliability efforts. Therefore, a consistent and strategic top down focus is required from management and throughout each of these groups. Organizational misalignment leads to competing groups and will make sustainable reliability within your organization extremely difficult, and maybe even impossible to achieve.
Reliability Engineers and Managers can support reliability through leadership, training, tools, etc. However, the answer to the question is that everyone within your organization is responsible for reliability. It is critical that everyone within an organization understands this and that reliability is made a goal for each of these groups with defined metrics to track understanding and achievement.
So, who owns equipment reliability in your plant? The answer is: Everyone!