May 14, 2014
11 Benefits of Building Maintenance Software
If you work in the reliability or facility maintenance industry and are finding that your current maintenance system is sub-par at best, it might well be time to consider looking into computerized maintenance management software, also known as a CMMS. This is doubly important if you are in charge of facility or building maintenance, as the number of moving parts in this sector can truly be overwhelming. With that in mind, let's discuss some of the ways that building maintenance software can help get you on the right track to success.
A very basic but critical part of any CMMS is the ability to easily schedule and issue work orders for your employees. These work orders can be as detailed as you want to make them and help improve employee efficiency by defining a clear set of goals.
Once you issue work orders for your employees to tackle maintenance tasks, you can then follow up and make sure that they actually completed the work order and have a record of steps they took, any issues they encountered, the time they spent, and so much more.
Along the same lines as employee accountability, maintenance software also keeps documentation for all of the tasks you and your staff perform. This can prove vital when it comes to warranties for broken-down machinery. Often, manufacturers will want to see proof that you properly maintained a piece of equipment (such as a water heater or boiler). A CMMS will keep track of any work that was performed on each and every piece of equipment under your domain.
An often overlooked feature of maintenance software is the fact that it can help keep your building and facility safe. By sending out alerts for when routine maintenance should be performed and letting you keep track of the condition of every aspect of your facility, you can reduce the chance of safety hazards popping up. For instance, maybe someone reported that the stairwell handrail is loose. In that event, you could issue a work order, prioritize it, and then follow up to make sure it was taken care of quickly, avoiding a tumble or slip and fall.
The ability to store warranty information, user manuals, manufacturer information, spare part locations, and so forth make a CMMS perfect for keeping organized. Don't rely on scraps of paper, binders, notebooks, file folders, or even spreadsheets - all of those methods can end up in the loss of information and wasted time. Keep everything stored in your maintenance software so you don't have to play hide and seek every time you need to check on a piece of equipment"s warranty.
As I stated in the beginning of this article, facilities have many moving parts, including assets such as computers, air conditioners, plumbing fixtures - the list goes on and on.
In addition, each one of these assets has a set of spare parts, documentation, and its own set of needs. Maintenance software lets you track not just the location of these assets and their spare parts but also relevant information for each piece of equipment, including maintenance steps, life expectancy, manufacturer and warranty data, and more.
By this point, it is probably pretty easy to see how a CMMS can save you time - no more scrambling around for information, no more trying to locate a machine or spare part. Need to call a manufacturer about a warranty? Just type a query into the CMMS and everything you need to know will pop up right in front of you.
Once your maintenance software is up and running, you can begin scheduling out your preventative maintenance needs and start to get an idea of how much time you will need to allow for staffing to cover daily and routine maintenance chores. If you are understaffed, this will help you identify your weak spots and provide proof that you need to hire more staff. If you have the opposite problem and find that you have employees twiddling their thumbs, your software will help show you that as well - and maybe offer up opportunities to streamline your operation or use your employees more wisely.
Once again, a computerized maintenance management system is all about seeing the big picture. By compiling lists of employee costs, spare and replacement parts, and other expenses, you can get a clear idea of what you can expect each quarter to cost and budget accordingly.
If you work in an environment where you need to invoice third-party agencies, subcontractors, or clients, most maintenance programs have this functionality built in, meaning you will have one less piece of software to rely upon.
Finally, the main purpose of a CMMS is simple: save your company money. There are many ways that maintenance software helps you do this, such as staying on budget, staffing efficiently, avoiding regulatory fines, keeping your equipment energy efficient, and so much more.