8 Tips for Reducing the Cost of Assets

Tips for Reducing the Cost of Assets

In any asset-intensive business, it’s crucial to take the best care of assets as possible. It’s also vital to avoid downtime, which can have a significant impact on your company’s bottom line. The following initiatives can help your organization improve asset utilization rates  and operational performance while reducing long-term capital costs.

  1. Purchase EAM software. If you are not already using EAM software in your organization, it is worthwhile to consider. Enterprise asset management software automatically reminds maintenance technicians of maintenance needs and helps them follow best maintenance practices.
  2. Standardize routine maintenance tasks. Many assets fail before their lifespan should be over due to a pattern of poor maintenance, resulting in preventable major repairs or fatal failures. Following a standardized preventive maintenance program will extend the life of your assets and save money.
  3. Warranty recovery. Tracking asset warranty information with EAM software can help you process warranty claims and recover the cost of repairs.
  4. Consider eliminating redundant equipment. Redundant equipment costs money to maintain and depreciates, so it may be more cost effective to maximize the use of a single piece of equipment instead of running two at half-capacity.
  5. Capture as much data as possible. If you are already using EAM software, maximize its use by capturing as many data points as possible about all your assets. This will give you the freedom to run more detailed analyses to inform future business decisions.
  6. Keep aging assets running. Keeping aging assets running for as long as possible is key to the financial performance of any organization. Regularly planned maintenance is crucial to keeping assets online.
  7. Analyze key performance indicators and make the necessary adjustments. You can improve your operations by analyzing equipment breakdown data, maintenance costs, work order backlog, equipment downtime, etc. An analytics dashboard will enable you to quickly evaluate key performance indicators and identify opportunities to lower asset costs.
  8. Effectively track and control spare parts. Effective tracking and controlling equipment can help you increase your profitability by ensuring that you don’t order duplicate or excess parts. Reducing spare part inventory levels will enable you to cut costs, and by securing parts just in time, you can prevent costly downtime.

DPSI’s iMaint EAM software provides you with the information and tools you need to maximize the performance of your assets, control maintenance costs, and improve your operations. DPSI has been in business since 1986 and has over 50,000 satisfied users in 50 countries around the world.  Contact DPSI for more information, or sign up for a free trial.

How To Achieve Inventory Process Reliability

As companies seek to achieve world-class maintenance reliability, many are discovering that the weak link in the chain is a lack of inventory process reliability.  Maintenance reliability too often suffers for the lack or misplacement of parts, and automated processes can only do so much without the support of your maintenance team.

During this recorded webinar, Dan Floen, President of PM2, presents the foundational elements of a self-directed, high-performance work team.  Ultimately, inventory process reliability rests in the hands of a fully-committed team that understands the connection between consistent labor performance and the overall success of your organization.
The insights offered will help illustrate the importance of ongoing inventory reliability. As key takeaways from the webinar, you will be provided with:

-Methods and industry best practices for improving inventory control
-Ways to engage your maintenance team toward better inventory procedures

Not Just for Maintenance: How CMMS Benefits Other Functions, Part I

It’s true that CMMS is typically designed for maintenance operations. With the advancement of cloud-based CMMS/EAM today, however, well-designed platforms have become an essential system for other departments within, and outside of, the organization. A Spend Matters interview with Michael Croasdale, senior project manager at Source One Management Services, relays that MRO service providers should be lock-step in line with client companies, to the degree that they’re sharing “specific data to benchmark pricing, [ensuring] service levels exceed industry standard and [helping] to institute industry best practices.” One way to maintain this alignment, of course, is through supplier access to the client’s CMMS. Internally, functions such as Human Resources, EH&S, QA/QC, Engineering, Operations, Supply Chain, and Finance also stand to benefit from regular usage of CMMS. As Part I of this series, we’ll look at how Engineering and Quality can experience improvements in their respective business processes through their CMMS roles and maintenance collaboration.

The Scenario

Let’s set the scene: while performing calibrations recently, your Quality Manager found unsatisfactory deviations in feed rates from a volumetric feeder, according to the Asset Trend Analysis generated by your CMMS. An automatic e-mail notification is generated by the CMMS, based on the equipment’s condition, to an Engineer to troubleshoot the issue.

The Action

volumetric feeder

By including your Quality and Engineering teams as roles within your CMMS, QA can automatically monitor and trend equipment data while Engineering can define the PMs to address deviations.

Your Engineer then creates a PM work order, defining the appropriate tasks or steps in the correct order and references the necessary documentation, associating parts, estimated hours, and assigning the PM based on skill qualification. She checks the PM procedures against Standard Operating Procedures (SOP), but finds a PM task is incorrect when returning the equipment back to service, however. The PM procedure is then revised with added verification steps, including a series of work order status approvals, and uploaded “visual aids” when setting load cells.

The assigned PM work order is routed through your Maintenance Planner for actual Technician assignment, which is confirmed after checking your CMMS’ PM Planner to avoid scheduling conflicts and unnecessary overtime. The assigned Tech receives an automatic e-mail notification of the PM work order, and also sees the new PM listed on his CMMS Dashboard. He performs the work as requested, following the outlined steps, and indicates the material used and records his labor through the CMMS’ mobile app labor timer on his iPhone. The Tech adds a few comments about the feeder and his signature to complete the work order.

The Resolution

Your Maintenance Supervisor receives an automatic e-mail notifying her of the completed work order, which requires her signature approval. After reviewing the work, the Supervisor is satisfied and signs off on the work order. The Quality Manager receives notification of this approved, completed work order via an automatic e-mail. He can go about other tasks, as he knows that the feeder issue has been addressed successfully.

The Catch

But what if your Maintenance Supervisor isn’t satisfied with the Tech’s work or the current status of the feeder? She can reject the work order, re-routing it back to the Maintenance Planner and the Tech. The work order can be re-opened for continued work by the same Tech or re-assigned by the Planner as needed.

This is just one sample CMMS business process workflow out of many different variations that may include multi-layered approval processes, routing, and notification setups. But by incorporating your Quality and Engineering teams into an advanced CMMS, you can enable better communication, increased productivity, and improved efficiency across your enterprise.

Determining CMMS Outcomes With Simple Cost Benefit Analysis

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A positive return on investment (or ROI) is an important metric to prove before making a business investment decision. In most situations, ROI is calculated in the context of marketing and sales investments to expand an organization’s awareness or client base. Along with being one of the most important metrics from which to base decisions on, it can also be one of the most difficult metrics to calculate, especially when it comes to CMMS systems.

Let’s look at the ROI formula:  CMMS ROI = (Value – Cost) / Cost

Seems simple right? Guess again. Determining the “value” variable of a CMMS is a complex task and becomes increasingly more difficult the larger your operations are. Because value is found within the areas of cost saving, facility managers look to maintenance data, such as:

  • Asset and Equipment Life,
  • Reduced Downtime,
  • Parts and Inventory,
  • Increased Productivity, and

The irony here is that the value metrics needed to move forward with CMMS buying decisions are the same metrics generated by a software system of this nature. As facility managers find themselves in a chicken vs egg scenario, projects are halted before they even begin.

So how do we make the case for investing in software when we can’t find its ROI? The answer lies in the calculation of another business metric- cost benefit analysis.

A cost benefit analysis assesses the trade-off between a project’s proposed benefits and its costs. If the benefits seem to outweigh the costs, then a business can reasonably move forward with such a project. If the organization finds it would have a negative impact on the department, then it may want to reassess the reasons they pursued CMMS implementation in the first place. Either way, determining the benefits of CMMS is much easier than quantifying a dollar amount for its value as you would when calculating ROI.

As the name suggests, a CMMS cost benefit analysis is comprised of two variables, cost and benefit. Both variables however are determined by several factors, each of which we will examine in closer detail.

Benefits

We suggest making a list of all the benefits a CMMS offers your organization, both tangible- you can apply a monetary value to it, and intangible- intrinsic benefits that may be harder to quantify.

Tangible Benefits

  • Extend the life of assets and equipment

A wealth of research suggests that implementing a formal preventive maintenance system extends the life of assets. One report confirms that without a PM program the expected useful life (EUL) of a manufacturer’s assets would decrease by 10-90% depending on the specific asset. A common statistic used by CMMS industry research states the average increase in an asset’s life expectancy is 20% when preventive maintenance is regularly applied. A similar approach to quantifying your organization’s PM implementation can be taken by tracking a small sampling of critical equipment/ assets and measuring its estimated breakdown period with and without PM in place. You can also speak with the asset’s manufacturer to better understand its EUL and how preventive maintenance can help.

  • Reduced downtime

It is easy to make the case for preventive maintenance by looking at the effect it has on reducing equipment downtime. This is an important and quantifiable metric as scheduling maintenance procedures instead of waiting for assets to breakdown without warning significantly increases the asset’s uptime. If your equipment suddenly requires un-scheduled repair, your organization’s overall productivity slows which has huge implications on your bottom line.

  • Eliminate manual processes

One of the greatest benefits that a CMMS system provides its users with is extensive automation, and a CMMS’ preventive maintenance module is no exception. Work orders automatically generate on a given frequency and are pre-assigned to a specific technician for completion. Further, e-mail notifications are sent in advance, both when work is due and to communicate any past due projects. For managers, reports are automatically emailed on a given frequency, eliminating the need to manually gather data and create weekly, monthly, or quarterly reports. Maintenance software systems also include work order templates for equipment models. This allows users to easily create new PMs for units with existing model types, saving the user time and ensuring all PMs are standardized. Some systems can also be set up to order parts when minimum quantity thresholds have been met. Having this level of automation frees up maintenance worker’s time to focus on maintaining facilities and equipment.

  • Reduce maintenance costs

If you don’t have a formal preventive maintenance system in place, your technicians are waiting for equipment to break down and then reacting. This is very costly in many ways. Firstly, corrective maintenance is more costly than planned preventive maintenance. In one scenario an air compressor’s repair costs were compared to its preventive maintenance.  It found that with a PM program the compressor would have to be fixed once every 4 years translating to a cost of $236/ yr. With preventive maintenance, the same compressor would need to be fixed in three years at a cost of $315/ yr. Although a $79 difference may not seem significant at first, consider the implications of servicing dozens of air compressors, handlers, and HVAC systems across multiple facilities year after year. $79 quickly adds up to tens of thousands of dollars in maintenance repair across your entire operations.

  • Increase worker productivity

In addition to maintenance repair cost savings, a PM system will make your maintenance team more productive. By planning maintenance on a set schedule, your team is better utilized within their work hours. Projects don’t spill into overtime as all jobs are carefully planned and coordinated to fit within the timeframe of a normal 8 hour workday. The result is lower labor costs and a better work/life balance for staff. These small adjustments are easily made via nimble calendar and scheduling tools within the system. CMMS software makes it easy to pull up staff schedules and make adjustments.

All productivity info is easily tracked and monitored through a CMMS system. Due dates and estimated completion times can be assigned to work orders and reports are then generated to show a performance breakdown of the maintenance team.

  • Create a paperless environment

Paper-based maintenance activities may satisfy the immediate requirements but it makes record keeping a nightmare. With CMMS software, the maintenance department moves away from work orders and task lists on paper and towards automated processes. Keeping data in a centralized location allows it to continuously be tracked and measured, whereas manual methods don’t allow for efficient data collection let alone in-depth analysis for reporting. Managers then find themselves spending precious work hours combing through paper to find reporting data or hand written work orders to view an asset’s maintenance history. As CMMS systems become more user-friendly and affordable- initial barriers for many organizations in the past- businesses are more and more willing to move away from archaic paper-based systems.

  • Make data-driven decisions

CMMS software allows maintenance managers and supervisors to access data quickly and make informed decisions based on in-depth reporting. If you have hundreds of work orders and purchases being processed monthly, managers need to make sense of equipment records to gage its performance. Maintenance management systems are equipped with metrics and KPIs that managers use to monitor their departments and make informed decisions to improve processes. Without metrics, managers are working off intuition and their gut feeling….which shall we say can be less than accurate.

Intangible Benefits

  • Increased visibility and transparency

Often overlooked as a CMMS benefit is the transparency that it brings to departments. There is nothing worse than a supervisor grilling the team on how performance needs to be improved without data to support it. Maintenance management systems allow managers and staff to agree on expectations and monitor performance to adjust their methods. Measuring and tracking of data is standard across the entire maintenance operation to instill an environment of fairness and provide the manager with solid data to back up their evaluations.

  • Improved customer satisfaction

Although it may be difficult to calculate the extent to which CMMS software affects customer satisfaction, one can ascertain that CMMS plays its part. One of those indications is shown through a system’s PM program. As indicated above, preventive maintenance helps to decrease downtime on assets to increase overall productivity. Customers are satisfied when their orders are shipped on time and correctly, aspects that wouldn’t always be possible without the help of automated processes.

  • Improved employee moral

Put simply, an empowered employee is happier and more productive. CMMS systems provide simple tools for maintenance staff to do their jobs better and faster. When management purchases systems with their staff in mind it sends a huge message that they are valued and have ownership over their own tasks. As ownership and autonomy increase, employees become more motivated and perform more efficiently which in turn has significant productivity benefits and increases the bottom line. Read more about how employee motivation affects productivity here. Additionally, investing in a CMMS signals to employees that management is taking steps to streamline processes that may have been outdated or unintuitive. Managers who seek to foster a culture of continuous improvement are seen as positive leaders and role models to their employees.

Costs

Now that we have a list of CMMS benefits, we need to look at the costs. When it comes to costs associated with CMMS, you need to consider both direct and indirect costs. For the purpose of this analysis we will only consider web-based CMMS software.

Direct Costs

  • Software license fees

Software license fees are either paid annually for a small discount or month-to-month to mitigate perceived buyer risk. Despite the pay period, these fees are ongoing and allow the buyer to act as a software leaser. Software license fees vary from vendor to vendor depending on their features and price structure. Although vendors commonly charge a per user license fee, others offer a more creative pricing structure such as charging per facility or building. For more information on how to research the best CMMS for your business, read our post here. Once you have a few vendors in mind, plug in their applicable license fee to your cost/ benefit analysis.

  • Set up fees

Usually, but not always, there are some set up costs associated with implementing a CMMS system. These costs vary depending on the vendor and the level of services required. At Hippo CMMS, 10% of our clients have our engineers come on-site, audit all equipment, and handle data integration from start to finish; 75% deliver data sheets for Hippo integration specialists to validate and import; and 15% take the DIY approach. Site audits obviously involve higher set up costs than providing data sheets to be imported. For more information on how to choose the right setup type for your organization, read our post here and here.

  • Training and technical support fees

It’s a good idea to pad your CMMS budget with enough room to accommodate potential training and technical support fees. One of the most frequently cited reasons for CMMS implementation failures is lack of training and support from the vendor. Personalized training sessions are the best way to properly understand various features that a CMMS has to offer and can be catered to each of your users for relevancy. The good news is that many vendors now offer free training and tech support for a period or bundle these services into the license fee. More and more vendors are starting to understand the importance of offering this vital service, so make sure to look for it during your research phase. At Hippo CMMS we offer initial training and on-going technical support at no charge.

Indirect Costs

The costs associated with changing processes and onboarding staff when implementing CMMS software is often overlooked and difficult to estimate. There is no real way to accurately quantify this number, but it’s important that you dedicate time towards this process. Onboarding will involve several rounds of training sessions with all users over the course of a few months to a year depending on the size of your maintenance team, the extent of advanced features that you want to use, and how drastic a change an automated CMMS will be from your current operations. If you have a team of 40 maintenance staff who have never used a CMMS system, you may find more resistance and a steeper learning curve. Carve out adequate time to integrate a CMMS into your operations and make sure to get feedback from your team every step of the way. For more tips to optimize your training sessions and ensure proper CMMS implementation, read our post here.


There is no question that CMMS software provides value to its users. After all, why else would more and more companies jump on board and pay for a new automated process? The key is to ensure that a CMMS would provide your organization with enough benefit to outweigh its overall costs of time and money. In terms of identifying the costs, concentrate on the dollar value of license fees, setup costs, and administrative man-hours that will be used to help implement the system. For benefits, determine the cost of machine downtime and the importance of increasing the longevity of your assets. A solid system also helps to save organizations both time and money by streamlining processes and reducing the need to sort through paper-based work orders or gather data. Once you’ve determined a CMMS’ cost and benefit, make sure you come out with a positive result. Although this method may not be as accurate as an ROI, it’s sure to give your decision makers the information they need to make a more informed choice.

How Mobile Tech Is Changing Building Management Processes

Mobile Tech Shifting Building Management ProcessThere are major benefits to updated technology processes for building managers.

Some time ago, project management was represented by three things: a pencil, a piece of paper, and a methodology. Fortunately, time flies and technology evolves and finally, the latest tech has come to the industry of building management. Now, the tools a facility owner has at their disposal has been significantly increased!

Managing a building or facility is no easy task, and keeping track of everything is often the hardest part. New technology software solutions make it easier for businesses to communicate with employees, clients, share files, and track the status of projects and assignments.

Check out these advantages of mobile technology for building management processes:

  • Reliable access – Ever had to ask a colleague to email you an essential document or guess a co-worker’s password to access files? Software for facility owners allows ease of access to needed documents, wherever.
  • Minimal upfront costs – Put the company credit card away. You won’t need new hardware, expensive on-site software installation, or extra IT staff, with easy work management solutions, the upfront costs are reduced.
  • Low-maintenance technology – When managing complex projects with many moving parts, a technology that’s simple, functional, and easy to maintain is essential! By focusing on bettering the building, you’ll want to minimize the time you spend installing updates and checking system requirements – new technology software allows this!
  • Security – With private information and sensitive data at the touch of a button, there must be first-rate security!
  • Cost efficiency – Securing a reliable software that grows with your team and projects is essential to keep costs low and tasks completed!

As technology becomes more prevalent, some buildings use multiple systems simultaneously. As a building owner or facility manager, you may be ready to secure your software and streamline your processes! Contact Landport Systems in Walnut Creek, California to get started today!

Cloud-Based Asset Management Tracks Activity Across Hundreds of Small Outlets

When you operate more than nine million square feet (840,000 square meters) of retail space across more than 1,100 small points of sale, facilities maintenance can become very challenging, very fast.

It isn’t that any of the properties requires daily maintenance—and that’s the problem. None of the spaces needs enough time or attention to justify the daily presence of an internal maintenance specialist. But they still need to be managed and maintained at a level that will impress and delight customers—in this case, the more than 13 million shoppers who buy more than 115 million clothing items per year from Gruppo Coin, Italy’s leading fast-fashion business.

“With all those points of sale, there are a lot of assets to manage, including electrical and air conditioning plants; smoke detection, fire safety, and alarm systems; public address and sound systems; hoisting systems; and the hardware for its data transmission systems,” Infor notes in a case study on Gruppo Coin’s Enterprise Asset Management strategy. Weekly, bimonthly, and monthly maintenance requires strict scheduling, but the system also has to be flexible enough to accommodate unexpected alarms or maintenance requests.

The Way It Was
Gruppo Coin manages its equipment and facility maintenance through Service Level Agreements (SLAs) with 20 different external providers. In the past, a 20-member technical team monitored maintenance activities, while the outside vendors “relied on Excel spreadsheets and Word files sent by email, text messages, and telephone calls to manage both planned and extraordinary maintenance activities,” Infor reports.

“These were absolutely insufficient tools for guaranteeing that our technical services provided suitable and effective monitoring and control over maintenance services,” said Gruppo Coin’s Manager of Technical Services, Andrea Scussel.

“This lack of specialized tools made it impossible to precisely check and analyze compliance by our external suppliers with the services stipulated in the SLA contracts,” he recalled. So “it was also impossible to keep track of actual costs and overall efficiency of the services.”

Moving Enterprise Asset Management to the Cloud
Gruppo Coin set out to reorganize its maintenance system around three key objectives.

The company wanted a database of its physical assets.

It sought an information management platform that could deliver a clear picture of all its facilities’ current status, as a basis for managing supplier relationships and ensuring SLA contract compliance.

And it was concerned about cost control, particularly for unplanned service calls generated by individual sites.

After a two-month search, Gruppo Coin placed its confidence in Infor Enterprise Asset Management (EAM). “It seemed clear to us that this company was particularly active, receptive, and flexible concerning our specific requirements,” Scussel said. And EAM delivered, with a cloud-based system that:

  • Gives store managers an up-to-date view of all their assets, including upcoming maintenance calls and resulting costs and material use
  • Provides a “virtual bulletin board” for scheduling, prioritizing, and monitoring specific tasks
  • Allows the company to benchmark and standardize practices across an extended network of small to medium-sized stores
  • Will allow for historical analysis as more data is added to the system, enabling the company to streamline maintenance procedures and optimize costs.

The ‘Irreplaceable Control Tool’
Gruppo Coin is still working to extend the EAM system to all its assets. But there’s no question that Scussel is satisfied with his IT solution and pleased with Infor.

“The application has kept all of its promises,” he said. “It has become an irreplaceable control tool and an important benchmark for the company. Infor knew how to listen to our needs, and supported the creation of a work group that was aimed specifically at meeting our demands and translating them into the best solutions.”

Click here for a copy of Infor’s Gruppo Coin case study.

Why is Preventive Maintenance So Important?

Is it Preventative or Preventive Maintenance? No matter how you say it either one it is essential to a Facility Manager and all the assets associated with the facility. This action is for the sole purpose of maintaining equipment and facilities in an optimal condition by using inspection, detection and corrective maintenance before any issues arise from normal wear and tear. The maintaining of the equipment provides an extended life to the equipment as well as preserves the top dollar value of the facility.

Preventive Maintenance is a process that needs a strategy and a system in order to be effective. Through Preventative Maintenance one can increase the equipment reliability and the wellness of the facility overall.  The Facility Managers can utilize a CMMS which will allow for full team participation,  a generation of reminders and work orders, tracking of any maintenance costs coinciding with corrective costs and the capability to work efficiently and save  time and money.

The Modern Way to Preventive Maintenance

With Preventive Maintenance Facility Managers are able to continually track costs, monitor equipment warranty dates, proactive replacements, and schedule manufacturer upgrades in order to provide better performance.  Imagine eliminating archaic asset tracking methods and using a system that can hold, manage, track, and remind you of the upcoming preventive maintenance schedules. Instead of finding out the hard way when assets fail, you need systems in place to tell you when, where, why, and on what asset to perform the preventive scheduled maintenance tasks. You no longer have to rely on someone’s memory, a stack of post-it notes, paper files, or emails to remind you when to schedule preventive maintenance. Asset tracking software will tell you when preventive maintenance is overdue so that you can take action. You will be collecting invaluable data regarding past maintenance and future maintenance, which will impact your ability to plan and manage future events

For example using a NetFacilities CMMS in Schools (K-12 & Specialty Schools), Universities, and Colleges, Facility Managers can manage hundreds, if not thousands, of assets, requests, and tasks each day. The maintenance department responsible for so much work needs a better way to stay on task, connect with management, and get things done (efficiently) across multiple locations. Managing the many assets (air conditioners, boilers, HVAC systems, computers, etc.) at each location involves many mission-critical tasks in the form of preventive maintenance, impulsive work orders, and inspections.

Obviously nobody can predict the future, but with the ability to generate customized schedules and reports as well as Work Orders which can be grouped by location and user notification the Facility Manager can foresee an increase in productivity and equipment life.

Why Your Maintenance Management Needs a Mobile App

Mobile has surged as our channel of choice—and apps our new currency.

Mary Meeker’s 2015 Internet Trends report illustrates a few ways the workforce is getting more tech-savvy with mobile:

  • We’re using personal devices for work: 45% of millennials and 18% of older generations.
  • We’re likely to download applications for work: 41% millennials and 24% older generations.
  • Connectivity is up 830%+ since 1995 (from 9% to 84%).

And connectivity via mobile devices is up 255%+ since 2009 (from 18% to 64%).

In the U.S., we’re spending an average of 151 minutes looking at our smartphone screen. Any time we want a status update or notification, we check our phone. Last year, we checked them an average of 85 times a day! It’s an obvious and preferred mode of connection, research and productivity. So why do so many maintenance organizations and maintenance managers fall back to Excel, printouts, or handwritten notes when there’s likely an app for that?

For maintenance managers and planners specifically, it’s essential to know the current status of all jobs in the backlog. This type of data (and more) has traditionally been stored in a computerized maintenance management system (CMMS).

Now, all of that valuable information is available in the pockets of maintenance planners and technicians alike, with mobile CMMS applications. As CMMS goes mobile, keeping a pulse on your organization’s truly current job status is possible. Mobile CMMS brings opportunities for better, real-time insights; improved department-wide productivity; and a connected on-the-go workforce.

3 Reasons to Take Your CMMS Mobile

Companies that integrate mobile for CMMS surge ahead of the competition, and future-proof facility operations. They save time, have better access to information, leave a kinder environmental footprint—and at the end of the day, are more productive because of it.

1. Save time. When it comes to building a world-class organization, uptime is a top priority. Think in terms of operations and employees—and making the most of each moment.

With mobile, managers and techs spend less time receiving instructions, gathering tools or materials, traveling to and from the site, etc., and more time completing maintenance tasks. How does mobile make a difference? Techs now have in-app access to mobile work order signatures, can log wrench time with a stop-start timer, and can upload images or video using the device’s camera. Technicians can receive alerts about new work assignments instantly, and work requesters can obtain minute-by-minute status updates.

2. Gain insights, access to critical information. From on-the-go techs to management, one of the biggest advantages of mobile is immediate access to real-time information. For example, technicians can access critical documents from the field. Or, do a global database search from the field should a complexity pop up (when it’s often most needed). With an asset’s complete work history at your fingertips, mobile CMMS becomes an incredibly useful tool. And the ability for techs to update job progress gives organizations access to critical metrics, such as average response times, average completion times, and total downtime. Overall, access to information fosters an organization-wide culture of productivity and collaboration.

3. Go green. Think of the cabinets full of asset records, work histories, and more (who knows what you’ll find if you dig deep). A new job pops up on the calendar, and it’s status quo to find documentation, print copies for a tech, then re-file new paperwork once the work order is completed. It’s a vicious cycle, and one that limits scalable growth.

A mobile platform is essential if you’re committed to going paperless. Rather than copies and printouts, disseminate job information with the click of a button. Files are stored direct to a tech’s device—convenient and eco-friendly. These digital documents, attached to work requests, can be accessed from anywhere. The entire process saves time, supports growth and enables a mobile team. At then end of the day, paperless processes makes the job easier and soften an organizational footprint.

Are you ready to get started with a top-notch mobile CMMS? Test drive Maintenance Connection with a free trial today!

How Preventive Maintenance Saves Money

How Preventive Maintenance Saves Money

Preventive maintenance is often still viewed by many companies as an unnecessary expenditure that is a waste of time and resources. In most cases, this is far from the truth and can prove to be a very costly mistake to make. Many companies tend to focus solely on the immediate issues that come up – repairing or replacing parts when something goes wrong in operations and reacting to other urgent matters. While this form of reactive maintenance is necessary in certain situations, transitioning to preventive maintenance is a strategy that will save both time and money, as well as help operations to run more smoothly. The transition from reactive to preventive maintenance can be a smooth transition to make with the help of the right preventive maintenance software. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at preventive maintenance with a spotlight on how it can save a company or other organization a lot of money over the long term. 

What Is Preventive Maintenance?

Preventive maintenance is not about fixing problems. Its focus is on preventing those problems from ever happening in the first place. It includes activities such as cleaning, lubrication, adjustments, repairs, and parts replacement. Each of these activities is performed in order to keep the equipment running in top condition and to prevent downtime and reactive fixes.

Preventive maintenance software is available to help you facilitate a good preventive maintenance plan. Instead of having to keep track of things with paper files, all data can be input into a preventive maintenance software program which then regularly schedules all preventive maintenance tasks and work orders. With preventive maintenance software, you can organize duties, record maintenance information and have everything together in one convenient location. 

How Preventive Maintenance Saves You Money

Now that you understand how preventive maintenance is different from reactive maintenance, it’s time to talk about the benefits in terms of how this new system and way of thinking can save your company money.

1. Reduced Downtime

When it comes to production, the phrase ‘time is money’ rings true. Every time machinery goes down for maintenance, you’re losing money both from employee wages (since employees have to wait for the equipment to be fixed) and from products (which cannot be produced when the equipment goes down). Preventive maintenance drastically reduces downtime because the entire purpose is to prevent downtime.

2. Increase Operational Efficiency

When preventive maintenance is properly implemented, equipment is routinely maintained so it can run in optimal condition at all times. When machines run more efficiently, they don’t have to use as much energy and resources. This means cost savings as well as improving your environmental footprint. 

3. Reduce the Risk of Expensive Reactive Maintenance

Reactive maintenance is incredibly expensive. When something breaks unexpectedly, you have the costs of your maintenance crew (which can include overtime pay), the cost of the extra time it takes to diagnose the problem, and the cost of the parts (which can include expedited shipping charges). Preventive maintenance can dramatically reduce the risk of these costs. Using preventive maintenance software, your crew will perform routine checks and planned maintenance at convenient times, steps that help you avoid large and expensive fixes down the road. 

4. Increase the Life of Equipment

In addition to reducing downtime and expensive fixes, preventive maintenance will also increase the life of your equipment. When everything is up to date and working properly, you will maximize the lifespan of your machinery, helping you get the most out of your investment. 

5. Improved Customer Service

Your customers are putting their trust and confidence in the goods or services you provide. They expect that these things will be delivered on time, and no one wants to hear that the products will be delayed because of machinery failures. When you can consistently provide quality, on-time service to your customers, you’ll end up with happier customers, better reviews, more referrals, and ultimately more sales. 

Implementing a Preventive Maintenance Program

If you’ve been relying on reactive maintenance but want a solution that will save you money, time and stress, it’s time to turn to preventive maintenance. While there are some initial costs to get started, you will end up saving a lot in the long term.

The best way to get started with a preventive maintenance plan is to first research your preventive maintenance software options. When you choose the right preventive maintenance software for your business, the transition will be a smooth and easy one to make.

You also don’t have to worry about fully transitioning to preventive maintenance right away. After you get your preventive maintenance software, you can work on setting up your equipment one by one on a preventive maintenance schedule. This way you won’t be overwhelmed, and you can work at your own pace.

As you can see, preventive maintenance offers many important benefits, but the most important of which is that it can improve your bottom line. Make the switch today, and you’ll see the cost savings start to add up quickly for your business or organization.

Famous Operations: What can we learn?

Facility Maintenance

Let’s face it: Not every facility is the same. While the concept of preventive maintenance may seem pretty cut-and-dried for the layman, in reality, it can be pretty complex and open to interpretation based upon the type of facility you are in charge of. With that in mind, sometimes, it is a good idea to tour other factories and buildings to get a sense of what other companies are doing and maybe take a few of their tricks back to your department. You never know: You may just learn a thing or two!

All around the globe, factories and warehouses are brimming with reliability professionals, all after the same goal: keeping their business up and running and trying to make their department a profit center instead of a resource drain. Companies can live and die based on their preventative and proactive maintenance plans; production errors, too much downtime, and workplace injuries can be more disastrous to a company than bad PR or a poor sales quarter.

Fortunately, there are industry leaders to look at and study worldwide to see what their maintenance managers are doing to help keep things on track. For instance, food facilities have to put an extra focus on handling and preparation procedures as well as food safety protocols, whereas a chemical manufacturer may emphasize work safety and spill prevention.

In reality, all facilities need to worry about core issues: reducing downtime, keeping grounds safe for workers and customers, increasing production, properly managing assets, and efficiently managing machine or equipment maintenance.

Hershey is a great example of a large company that you can learn a thing or two from in terms of managing a facility. One of the largest chocolate providers in the world, Hershey produces a large array of edible goods, each requiring its own set of custom molds and production processes. Chocolate goes through heating and cooling steps to ensure that your candy bar arrives not only delicious but with a certain consistency and appearance as well. Because of this, keeping the assembly line flowing is pivotal; any shutdown can result in ruined batches of candy and a significant loss of profits.

Cross-contamination is another concern for food manufacturers. Chocolate producers, such as Cadbury, whose main production facility lies in Bournville, England, must be careful to ensure that plain chocolate products do not accidentally take on peanut dust during manufacture, as consumers with nut allergies could be negatively affected. Strict quality standards must be in place to ensure that this delicious but hazardous breach does not occur!

Boeing may not be in the food business, but they can certainly teach us a thing or two about the importance of eliminating downtime or, at the very least, responding to emergencies rapidly. Across the globe, thousands of airplanes are preparing to take off at any moment. Some carry passengers, while others carry cargo, but at the end of the day, any delay in operation can cost a business thousands of dollars per minute. With that in mind, Boeing not only needs to produce quality parts and machinery but respond rapidly when a vendor needs an emergency part to get their plane up and running again. Having a supply network in place to handle incidents such as this is crucial to a company like Boeing and possibly to your own business as well.

Meanwhile, Dow Chemical is a producer of many household products that we use in the home and office everyday. By the very nature of their business, their employees must deal with potentially hazardous chemicals night and day (the word is even in their name, folks). When spills happen, it isn’t just a matter of lost profit, but it can be a safety hazard as well. Having procedures in place and training employees on proper materials handling and cleanup is of utmost importance to a company like Dow. Managing safety gear and keeping up to date with the latest compliance standards are equally important, and you can bet your last dollar that Dow Chemical maintenance pros have a top-notch system in place to keep track of these things.

So next time you are visiting a new city or are away on travel, consider taking a tour of a local factory or manufacturer. Let the company know you are “in the biz” and maybe they will give you a behind-the-scenes peek at how they keep their organization in tip-top shape. Maybe you can bring something back to your own facility to make your maintenance processes even better!

Computerized Maintenance Management Systems Advice