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The Maintenance Management Blog

March 18, 2015

Signs That You’re In Dire Need of A CMMS

Signs That You're In Dire Need of A CMMS

It is that time of year again - spring is in the air, and with it, the obligatory spring cleaning. If you are a reliability professional and work in facilities or maintenance management, now is a perfect time to take a good, hard look at your maintenance process and ask yourself: is this as good as it gets? If you do not employ the use of a computerized maintenance management system, I can answer for you: not a chance. If you are not using a computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) to help manage your preventative maintenance plan, odds are you have noticed that your system has a bunch of kinks in it. Below, I list a few signs that you are in dire need of maintenance software.

Where Did I leave Those Keys (and Other Parts)?

When a machine breaks down and you are scrambling around for spare parts, you know (as does the CEO), that every minute can potentially cost you thousands of dollars. Having the location of spare parts written down on a piece of paper - or worse, in the back of your mind - is not doing anyone any favors. What happens if you lose that paper? How do you sort handwritten text or search it to easily find things? What if an employee is looking through the sheets? Can they even read that sloppy handwriting of yours? If you are still writing down the location of spare parts, this is a definite sign that you need to join the modern era and get yourself a CMMS.

Who You Gonna Call? No, Not Ghostbusters

Again, anytime a machine needs to be repaired or replaced, the clock is ticking. Having to locate a vendor or manufacturer number (and your warranty information) is just as bad as not being able to locate spare parts. A maintenance management system is great at storing this type of information, alongside other important documents, such as owner or operator manuals and other equipment information.

You Never Told Me To Fix That Machine!

One big benefit of utilizing a CMMS is the ability to issue and track work orders. This is important for so many reasons. For starters, it allows you to follow up on machine repairs and routine preventative maintenance schedules to ensure that the work was finished. Maintenance software also has reporting features, so you can pull up data for budgeting man-power and expenses, as well as predict what you will need in the future. With this type of information, you can identify any "lags" in work being performed, and streamline your employee schedules to make sure no one is standing around twiddling their thumbs on the corporate dime. Additionally, this tracking is essential for warranty, regulation, and compliance issues. For example, if a particular piece of equipment breaks down, odds are the manufacturer will want to see proof that you were performing proper maintenance on the machine before they will authorize a complete replacement. If you do not have proof, or if your employees were not performing timely maintenance (and you were unaware because you did not have a good tracking system), they may well reject your claim and accuse you of violating the warranty. A costly prospect for sure.


Lisa Richards

About the Author – Lisa Richards

Lisa Richards is an experienced professional in the field of industrial management and is an avid blogger about maintenance management systems and productivity innovation. Richards' undergraduate degree in Industrial Engineering opened the door for her initial career path with a Midwest-based agricultural implement manufacturer with global market reach. Over a span of 10 years, Lisa worked her way through various staff leadership positions in the manufacturing process until reaching the operations manager level at a construction and forestry equipment facility. Lisa excelled at increasing productivity while maintaining or lowering operating budgets for her plant sites.

An Illinois native, Lisa recently returned to her suburban Chicago North Shore hometown to raise her family. Lisa has chosen to be active in her community and schools while her two young girls begin their own journey through life. Richards has now joined the MAPCON team as an educational outreach writer in support of their efforts to inform maintenance management specialists about the advantages in marrying advanced maintenance software with cutting-edge facility and industrial management strategies.

Filed under: CMMS, maintenance headaches, preventive maintenance, spring cleaning — Lisa Richards on March 18, 2015