Simple Tips For New CMMS Managers

There might come a time within your journey up the career ladder when you want to become manager or a team leader and be responsible for more than just your own work. Becoming a manager is an incredibly important thing to get right, and being a good manager is something which can be a challenge for anyone starting out in the field today. Today we are going to take a look at some simple tips and tricks you should follow to allow you to be the best manager you can be.

Use software

As a new manager, the hardest thing you might deal with is making sure that everyone is on track with their projects and that you can stay in the loop with everything this year. You can use a building management software to make things a lot easier for yourself and this will allow you to keep an eye on your employees and see where they are at and what kind of things you should chat to them about each and every day.

Be honest

The difference between a mediocre and a great manager is the ability to communicate and be honest with your workers. Honesty is always the best policy and when it comes to showing your employees that you are a great manager, being transparent is incredibly important. You need to be sure that if you have an issue or a problem that you share this with your team and allow them to help you solve it. Working things out together is better than alone and this will make such an impact on your ability to work together in the office.

Show off talents

Every single person who works under your command will have a unique set of skills which they can show off to you, and they will have the ability to work in unique and different ways. It is important that you always talk to each person as an individual and be sure that you give them tasks and jobs which allow them to show off their talents. If you can treat everyone as an individual you should be able to have the most successful team possible working for you.

Learn to be assertive 
When it comes to becoming a manager for the first time, perhaps the weirdest shift in behavior will be going from taking orders to giving them. If you aren’t a naturally assertive person this can be super hard for you to get used to and it will take a bit of time for you to settle into that flow of things for good. It is important as a leader to be assertive because you need to gain some respect from your workers and you also need to make sure that they will listen to you when you speak. Be confident in your conviction and this will make a big difference to how people see you and how they react to you when you speak to them every day.

Three Important Ways To Keep Your Business Protected

Like all business owners, you are probably looking to make sure that your business is protected at all times. The only way this can be done is if you actually take steps to put necessary precautions in place. Too often business owners will overlook this aspect of their business or they prefer to spend money elsewhere not seeing the protection as a necessity. However, all it takes is for one thing to go wrong and it can cost you your entire business.

In this article, we’re going to look at some things you can do to ensure your business stays protected. Keep reading if you are interested in finding out more.

It’s the law

The first thing you need to do is to make sure you are taking all of the necessary precautions to prevent people from getting injured on your premises. You can do this in a number of ways. One way would be to make sure you adhere to all of the health and safety precautions required by legislation. These laws are there to help businesses and clients remain safe from any possible harm. Ensure that you have been through all of the health and safety regulations that could apply to your business but also be sure to enforce them.

You should also be taking other precaution such as getting your employees to sign non-disclosure agreements (NDA’s).  If any employee has access to any confidential information, you need to know you can take action if they divulge company secrets. This is really important if there are certain things your competitors or other people in the industry cannot know about. Or, make sure you invest in preventative maintenance software so that you don’t have to spend numerous hours cleaning up when things start to take a turn.

Get Insured

Do you have business insurance? If the answer to this question is no, you need to really reconsider. There are a variety of types of coverage you could need from workers compensation to general liability and more. Protecting your business should be your top priority, and you can’t do that if don’t have the proper insurance. If you are worried about paying premiums that are not necessary, you shouldn’t. There are specialists who can give you the correct advice to so this does not happen.

Some customers may require you to have insurance in order to do business with them. As an organizational trainer, I had to show proof of insurance before signing a contract to present workshops. Good thing I had it or I would have lost the contract.

Have A Lawyer

Finally, if you have a lawyer on retainer, you can be sure you have someone there to give you the right advice you need if things do go wrong. Some businesses will argue this is a cost they cannot afford, but this should not be the way of thinking that most companies take because just like not following safety regulations and not having insurance, it could cost you your business in the end. It’s always better to have someone there for when you fall to pick you up than to fall and have to navigate your way around the darkness alone.

Spend time assessing your business to make sure you have the protection you need. The time spent will be well worth it. Here’s to YOUR success!

Become Known For Great CMMS Staff Treatment

Women in CMMS

It’s the case that leaders and employees alike need confidence to conduct their roles. If they have to question themselves too thoroughly each and everyday nothing would get done, and of course, this is why we hire qualified individuals and hope to become qualified ourselves. But there are levels of confidence. Pride could be included into that essential list.

Without pride, it’s quite easy to feel dejected and unhappy in the longer term, especially as a firm hoping to move on from failures and attempt to find successes. Pride can help a firm retain its dignity despite perhaps suffering a bad product launch, or angering a percentage of their customers through a bad decision. Of course, simply suggesting that your firm will never encounter these issues is putting your head in the sand, and isn’t helpful in the least. An issue is likely to befall you at some point.

This means that when it does strike, your business pride will take a hit. But should it be flexible enough to bounce back and motivate your employees to renewed action, or setting up your business in a manner that supports its own operation, you’ll find some positive progress.

Let us consider what that could look like:

Take Care Of It

A business that takes care of itself is one that has pride, front and centre. For example, a business protecting its assets is often seen as one with good sense, but is this the end of the story? Might it be worth implementing measures to ensure that equipment breakdown and staff failure is handled carefully? You’ll be able to implement that wisely with a service such as Maxpanda, as this can help you ensure that your equipment is taken care of, broken down items are kept well serviced, but most importantly that your staff are able to handle these issues well, and organize effectively. This mindset of ‘we will take care of our own value’ is essential to building a firm with self-confidence and the interest to succeed in the end.

Branding Might

Branding might just be something you quickly throw together in your startup days to ensure you have a company name and a logo to promote. But over time, it can often be that you wish for this to be a true representation of that you hope to do. Perhaps your business is changing direction, and the old business logo and name doesn’t quite make sense. You see these rebrands take place all the time, and this can often inject a rejuvenation of pride and a willingness to start afresh, even stronger this time. If your brand feels stagnant, consider this as an option!

Become Known For Staff Treatment

A great product or service success is of course the goal with your business, but it’s also important to become known for staff treatment. For example, it might be that you enjoy a great staff training program, or you’re known to support your staff in aftercare when they leave. Perhaps you have a great maternity package for pregnant employees. Become known for designed programs like this. It can help your staff feel proud to work there.

With these tips, you’re sure to help your business pride.

Avoiding The Waste Of Unnecessary Business Spending

All businesses must spend money to make money. We call this healthy harmony of financial spending and revenue ‘cash flow,’ and this allows companies to develop themselves even when operating at a loss for the time being. This can also be quite common for smaller businesses just trying to get their footing. But no matter the size of your business, big or small, centralized or decentralized, raised or flat in terms of hierarchy, and no matter what assets you’re sitting on or how well known you are, avoiding unnecessary business spending is always key.

Overblown spending can affect your bottom line deeply. It affects your cash flow to the point where expenditure is not longer replenished by the revenue you gain. It can lead to you defaulting on other bills that need to be paid, or can often lead you to an ineffective solution. Often, when budget is a factor, you look for the most efficient means forward. When somehow justifying unnecessary spending, you might actually be harming your productivity.

But how do you prevent this from happening? Let us explore that:

Repair Your Equipment

It can often be that business leaders wish to run their operation from only the most pressing and new equipment needs, especially when it comes to an IT network or when securing the manufacturing line. But in reality, it can often be the case that repairing existing goods can help them remain perfectly functional for a longer time, helping you gain the most value out of them. But of course, maintenance isn’t something you just click your fingers and expect to happen immediately. This also takes effort and time to perfect. Using an CMMS service such as Maxpanda.com can help you implement ticketing solutions to ensure internal and external maintenance priorities are kept in order, helping your staff apply their prioritized skillset to the right task at the right time. This leads your firm to reduce the wasting of precious assets, and instills company pride.

Recuperation

Sometimes, a business will spend money trying to fix a mistake it didn’t need to make in the first place. This can be a true pain, and quite upsetting for those who managed the initial project. Let’s say your marketing effort was a blunder. This is because you decided to arrange this campaign yourself, despite having no marketing hires and little marketing experience. Because you’re not quite up to date with current trends, it might have fallen flat on its face. Only then do you need to hire professionals to once again restore your PR and then acquire the services of a good marketing firm. Consult with the professionals first and foremost, and realize, expert knowledge is priceless.

Staff Turnover

If staff aren’t happy, they will leave, taking the training and development you have invested into them, both in time and budget. You’ll also need to replace them using the same investment. This means that investing a little more in the staff experience, giving them a competitive package and treating them well can help you avoid losing money on your labor engagements over time.

With these tips, you’re sure to avoid the waste of unnecessary business spending.

Planning For The Ideal ‘Zero Mistake’ Automation

There are businesses that can cover their mistakes with added funding, or perhaps wish to experiment and see what they can come up with to innovate. But there are other forms of business that simply cannot tolerate a single mistake, and to do so could mean a complete downfall in their public perception. For example, consider a private clinic. Medical malpractice happening there, even just one case of it, is likely to cause a drop in patient sign-ups and a nasty lawsuit that could cost plenty.

But of course, not all mistakes are as big and messy as these. Simple organizational mistakes, safety hazards or misplaced bookkeeping can truly harm that which you hope to achieve in the long term, and even potentially cause you to worry about your future as a firm.

For that reason, planning for the zero mistake ideal is essential if you ever hope to run as intended. Even if you’re in a firm that can tolerate a mistake here and there, utilizing this ethos can help you better your brand and as an extension, yourself.

Plan Accordingly

It’s essential to make certain you and your team are on the same page, that materials are tracked and inventory is secured. Booked clients must also be taken care of with expert timing and punctuality, and their feedback must be cataloged. In certain advanced practices, hygiene, operational preparedness and a range of other essentially complex and integral duties should be absolutely transparent in how, where, why, when they are happening, and who will be present. Often, finding the best software CRM can help you in this task, particularly brilliant hospital maintenance software designed to track the specialized needs of a clinic like this.

Hygiene & Organization

The old saying suggests that cleanliness is close to Godliness, and it’s hard to deny that emotive use of language. Hygiene can ensure that your business is cared for well, that each day the workplace is refreshed for tomorrow, and that everyone commits their fair share. Unhygienic environments can affect staff and clients or customers, render functional equipment useless and also cause a strong lack in employee motivation. Ensuring that common staff hygiene practices are enforced, a cleaning rota is applied, and specialized cleaning services are hired will help you get some of the way there.

Accountability

Understand that accountability can often prevent untoward action from occurring in the first instance, but also that you are able to get to the heart of a problem when it does occur, helping you learn for next time. Remember, wanton discipline can often lead to staff failing to report issues, so you’re going to have to strike a strong balance between ensuring staff wish to come forward to help educate you of the issue, and being able to discipline willful departure from your policies or simple incompetence from showing.

With these tips, you’ll edge ever-close to the ‘zero mistake’ ideal. To us, that’s a great result.

3 Mistakes That Could Kill Your Medical Practice

If you’re looking for a stable and profitable business to put your money behind, a medical practice is a good option. Everybody needs healthcare so if you set up a good medical practice, you can make a good living while helping out the local community at the same time. But a lot of people make the mistake of thinking that it’s going to be easy and if you set it up, you’re guaranteed to get plenty of patients, but that’s not the case at all. It’s actually very difficult to set up a good medical practice and there are plenty of things that you can get wrong. If you’re thinking about setting up your own medical practice, it’s important that you avoid these common mistakes.

Forgetting The Financial Aspect

A good medical practice is, first and foremost, about excellent patient care. If you can’t offer a good level of care to your patients, you’re going to really struggle to grow the practice and make it a success. However, a lot of people make the mistake of only focusing on patient care and forgetting that this is still a business and needs to be treated as such. It’s so important that you remember the financial aspect and take the same approach that you would to any other business. For example, you might decide that you’re going to invest in a lot of expensive equipment for your practice because it improves patient care. That’s great, as long as you can actually afford it and you’re not going to end up in serious financial trouble because your spending is out of control right at the beginning. You need to have proper financial projections from the very beginning and make sure that you’re managing cash flow effectively. You can increase spending and invest in expensive equipment once you’re well established.

Neglecting Maintenance

Maintenance is so important in any business but it’s especially important in the healthcare industry. You need to make sure that your equipment is working correctly at all times and the building is suitable for patient care, so it’s vital that you stay on top of maintenance. There are a lot of maintenance tasks to keep track of so it’s a good idea to invest in some maintenance management software like Maxpanda for healthcare facilities to help make life easier for you. It will be able to track the maintenance requirements of all of your equipment so all maintenance is carried out on time, every time.

Hiring The Wrong People

The medical professionals that you hire at your practice will make or break the business. It’s important that you have people with a good amount of experience, otherwise, patients won’t have trust in the practice. If all of your staff are younger medical professionals that only have a few years experience, you won’t have that wealth of knowledge to draw on and that means patient care will suffer. It will cost you more to hire these experienced doctors, but it’s worth the investment if you want the practice to be a success.

Medical practices can be very lucrative businesses, but only if you avoid these basic mistakes when you’re setting them up. 

What Is CMMS?

CMMS is software that is used to schedule and record operation and preventive/planned maintenance activities associated with facility equipment.

The CMMS can generate and prioritize work orders and schedules for staff to support “trouble” calls and to perform periodic/planned equipment maintenance. Upon completion of a work order, performance information, such as the date work was performed, supplies/inventory, and man hours expended, typically is loaded into the database for tracking, to support future operations/planning.

Not to confuse CMMS with a Computer-aided Facilities Management (CAFM) system, consider a patient room in a hospital, e.g, ensuring that the Nurse Call System in the room is “properly inspected, maintained, and repaired” is a CMMS activity. “Knowledge” about the medical department staff; specific patient(s) in the room; the room’s contents (phones, TVs, beds–including whether they are moved from room-to-room); and equipment hook-ups (electrical, oxygen, communications, etc.) relate to CAFM activities. CMMS and CAFM systems continue to merge into Integrated Work Order Management Systems (IWOMS).

CMMS are used by facilities maintenance organizations to record, manage, and communicate their day-to-day operations. The system can provide reports used in managing the organization’s resources, preparing facilities key performance indicators (KPIs)/metrics to use in evaluating the effectiveness of the current operations, and for making organizational and personnel decisions. In today’s maintenance world, the CMMS is an essential tool for recording work requirements, tracking the status of the work, and analyzing the recorded data in order to manage the work, produce reports, and help control costs. Facility professionals use tools to manage the planning and day-to-day operations and maintenance activities required for a single facility or a large complex. These tools also provide all of the information required to manage the work, the work force, and the costs necessary to generate management reports and historical data.

DESCRIPTION

The goal of a maintenance manager is to employ a management system that optimizes the use of valuable resources (manpower, equipment, material, and funds) to maintain facilities and equipment. The system should provide for integrated processes, giving the manager control over the maintenance of all facilities and maintainable equipment from acquisition to disposal. The system should:

  • Address all resources involved,
  • Maintain maintenance inventory,
  • Record and maintain work history,
  • Include work tasks and frequencies,
  • Accommodate all methods of work accomplishment,
  • Effectively interface and communicate with related and supporting systems, ranging from work generation through work performance and evaluation,
  • Support each customer’s mission,
  • Ensure communication with each customer,
  • Provide feedback information for analysis, and
  • Reduce costs through effective maintenance planning.

A modern CMMS meets these requirements and assists the facilities maintenance manager with work reception, planning, control, performance, evaluation, and reporting. Such a system will also maintain historical information for management use. The manager should evaluate management data requirements and establish electronic data needs prior to acquiring a new CMMS or additions to/replacement of an existing system. The evaluation should include a return on investment (ROI) analysis before investing in additional or new CMMS capabilities. The manager should only acquire what is necessary to accomplish the maintenance organization’s goals. The following paragraphs include details of capabilities that may be included in a modern CMMS.

A. Operating Locations

The CMMS may include an application that allows an operator to enter and track locations where equipment operates and organize these locations into logical hierarchies or network systems. Work orders can then be written either against the location itself or against the equipment in the operating location. Using operating locations allows for the tracking of the equipment’s lifecycles (history) and provides the capability to track the equipment’s performance at specific sites.

B. Equipment

The CMMS may include a module that allows an operator to keep accurate and detailed records of each piece of equipment. This module would include equipment-related data, such as bill of material, Preventive Maintenance (PM) schedule, service contracts, safety procedures, measurement points, multiple meters, inspection routes, specification data (name plate), equipment downtime, and related documentation. This equipment data is used for managing day-to-day operations and also as historical data that can be used to help make cost-effective “replace or repair” decisions. The data can also be used to develop additional management information, such as building equipment downtime failure code hierarchies for use in maintenance management metrics.

C. Resources

The CMMS may include a separate module to track labor resources. This module typically includes records for all maintenance personnel, including their craft or trade categories, such as mechanic, electrician, or plumber. Additionally, this module may include labor rates in order to capture and track true labor costs against any asset or piece of equipment. Some CMMS will allow maintenance managers to also track skill levels and qualifications for each resource to help in planning and scheduling work. Grouping labor categories into common associations can help a manager assign work to particular shop rather than an individual.

D. Safety Plans

With the emphasis placed on safety throughout Government and industry, a capability for safety plans/planning may be included in a CMMS. The following capabilities should be available:

  • Manual or automatic safety plan numbering.
  • Building safety plans for special work.
  • Tracking hazards for multiple equipment and locations.
  • Associating multiple precautions to a hazard.
  • Tracking hazardous materials for multiple equipment and locations.
  • Ability to reference hazards and precautions once they are entered into the system.
  • Tracking ratings for health, flammability, reactively, contact, and Material Safety Data Sheets for hazardous materials.
  • Defining lock-out/tag-out procedures.
  • Defining tag identifications for specific equipment and locations.
  • Defining safety plans for multiple equipment or locations.
  • Viewing and linking documents.
  • Associating safety plans to job plans, preventative maintenance masters, and work orders.
  • Ability to print safety plans automatically on work orders.
  • Allowing tag-out procedures to be associated to hazards or directly to locations, equipment, and safety plans or work orders.

E. Inventory Control

An inventory control module may be included to allow an operator to track inventory movement, such as items being moved in or out of inventory or from one location to another. Stocked, non-stocked, and special order items could be tracked. The module should also have the capability for tracking item vendors, location of items, item cost information, and the substitute or alternate items that can be used if necessary. Some CMMS recommend and provide the ability to track tools and provide basic tool-room management features as part of the inventory module. This feature allows work planners to see what tools are in stock and assign tools to various work categories to reduce research effort by mechanics and technicians working in the field.

F. Work Request

A work request module should be an integral part of a CMMS. The module can provide the capability for a requestor to input the request, such as a trouble call, or it can be entered by the maintenance organization’s work control. The data entry screen should be designed to need only minimal data entry; a requester should be able to enter minimal data, and work control can enter additional information as required. Data should be entered once, and pop-up tables in the system should eliminate the need to memorize codes. The work order number can be assigned manually or automatically.

G. Work Order Tracking

A CMMS must include work order tracking which is the heart of a work order system. Again, the data should require entry only once, and pop-up tables should eliminate the need to memorize codes. The tracking system should provide instant access to all of the information needed for detailed planning and scheduling, including work plan operations, labor, materials, tools, costs, equipment, blueprints, related documents, and failure analysis. Of course, this is dependent on how many modules are installed and how much information has been entered in the system. The manager must evaluate data requirements and the practicality of adding modules.

H. Work Management

A work management module may be a part of the CMMS. The module could provide the capability that would let a planner specify which labor personnel to apply to specific work orders and when. The module permits planning and dispatching.

  • Planning—In planning, labor assignments would be planned for future shifts. Each person’s calendar availability would be considered when the assignments are made. The assignments would be created sequentially over the shift, filling each person’s daily schedule with priority work for the craft. It could even split larger jobs over multiple shifts automatically.
  • Dispatching—In dispatching, labor assignments would be carried out as soon as possible. This system could begin tracking labor time from the instant the assignment is made. The system operator could interrupt work already in progress to reassign labor resources to more crucial work.

I. Quick Reporting

The CMMS could provide a rapid and easy means for opening, reporting on, and closing work orders, and reporting work on small jobs after-the-fact. Labor, materials, failure codes, completion date, and downtime could all be reported.

J. Preventive Maintenance

The following capabilities may be provided in a CMMS to manage a Preventive Maintenance (PM) program:

  • Supporting multiple criteria for generating PM work orders. If a PM master has both time-based and meter-based frequency information, the program should use whichever becomes due first, and then update the other.
  • Generating time-based PM work orders based upon last generation or last completion date. Next due date and job plans should be displayed.
  • Permitting and tracking PM extensions with adjustments to next due date.
  • Triggering meter-based PM by two separate meters.
  • Printing sequence job plans when wanted.
  • Creating a PM against an item so new parts have PM automatically generated on purchase.
  • Specifying the number of days ahead to generate work orders from PM masters that may not yet have met their frequency criteria.
  • Consolidating weekly, monthly, and quarterly job plans on a single master.
  • Assigning sequence numbers to job plans to tell the system which job plan to use when a PM work order is generated from a PM master.
  • Permitting overriding of frequency criteria in order to generate PM work orders whenever plant conditions require.
  • Routing PM with multiple equipment or locations.
  • Generating work orders in batch or individually for only the equipment specified.
  • Capability to be used with the system scheduler to forecast resources and budgets.

K. Utilities

A utilities module that contains detailed information on utilities consumption, distribution, use, metering, allocation to users, and cost may be included. It could include modeling capability and linkage to utility control systems.

L. Facility/Equipment History

A history module that would contain the maintenance histories of the facilities and equipment may be included. It would contain summaries of PM, repairs, rehabilitation, modifications, additions, construction, and other work affecting the configuration or condition of the items. It would include completed and canceled work orders. The maintenance history records can be used to support proactive maintenance techniques such as root-cause failure analysis and reliability engineering.

M. Purchasing

A mature CMMS may also include a purchasing module to initiate the requisition of material against a work order and track the delivery and cost data of the material when it arrives. This capability will allow the maintenance manager improved visibility of matters that can impact work planning and efficiency. Procuring required material outside the CMMS can often leave information gaps that can inhibit the effectiveness of work execution and result in redundant parts orderings and non-standard procurement practices. The purchasing module may include many functions, such as a vendor master catalog, invoicing, purchase orders, receiving, and even request for quotations.

N. Facilities Maintenance Contracts

A CMMS may contain a contracts module that includes information on maintenance contracts. With other database files, it provides a picture of each contractor’s past performance, current loading, and planned work. It could include information on specifications, Government furnished property, quality assurance, payment processing, delivery orders issued, schedules, and related matters. It could cover both contracts for facilities maintenance and support services.

O. Key Performance Indicators (KPI)/Metrics

The CMMS can be utilized to accumulate the data for KPIs for use in evaluating the organization’s maintenance program. The maintenance management organization must select the metrics to utilize in establishing their goals and in measuring progress in meeting those goals. The importance of Selecting the Right Key Performance Indicators cannot be overstated. The KPIs must be based on data that can be obtained and provide meaningful information that will be utilized in managing the organization.

P. Specialized Capabilities And Features

Some CMMS providers have also developed specialized capabilities and features for particular business sectors, functions, or requirements. Maintenance managers today can use their CMMS to track transportation and fleet inventory, including maintenance history, mileages, lease terms, rates, and accounting data. Other managers are using their CMMS to track deployed assets, such as computers and other IT equipment. Through their CMMS, they track changes, additions, and movement of equipment, including software inventory on computers, tablets, and smart phones. When selecting a CMMS; consider the full scope of asset management options, with a focus on consolidated IT solutions.

APPLICATION

A CMMS can be used to manage simple or complex facilities, from a single building to a complete campus. A CMMS can also be used to manage the maintenance program for a grouping of equipment such as a fleet of vehicles. The systems are very versatile, as most are in modular form for various maintenance functions and can be customized to fit the particular application. Whatever system or set of modules are selected for use, careful consideration needs to be given to functional requirements and a sound deployment plan. The CMMS must meet the needs, constraints, and opportunities of the business and be implemented in a way that users will welcome the technology and have a vision for the benefits it brings. Proper configuration, testing, and training cannot be over emphasized when bringing a new CMMS or upgrading an existing system to an organization.

LESSONS LEARNED

Before procuring and implementing a CMMS, it’s critical to determine how the system is to be an asset and a usable tool in the management of an organization’s day-to-day maintenance and operations.

GENERAL CONSIDERATIONS (DO’S)

  1. Understand the other systems used by your organization with which the CMMS will have to interface, such as financial and geospatial systems, and ensure that this interface can be easily managed. Users and managers of these systems, including the IT group, should be involved in developing the CMMS.
  2. When considering a new system, make sure that the data from the existing system can be easily and accurately transferred.
  3. Look for full support from the vendor during installation and testing. Ensure that this includes ample training of the organization’s staff in both operating the system and how to maximize the benefit of the information within the system. The vendor should impart a clear understanding of what the system can and cannot do, as well as annual maintenance and upgrade costs.

POTENTIAL PITFALLS (DON’TS)

  1. Do not go into the selection of a system without a clear definition of requirements: What you expect it to do and how it is to meet your specialized needs. Also, have a clear understanding of what metrics you want your CMMS to produce and what the work process is for your organization. You may want to bring in outside professional guidance experienced in CMMS but not associated with any particular vendor or system.
  2. Do not try to develop a CMMS in-house. You will spend an inordinate amount of time and money designing a system that is likely already available on the market. There are many vendors of good off-the-shelf systems that have the advantage of years in developing and improving systems for other similar clients.
  3. Do not make your CMMS your primary payroll and accounting system. Remember that it is a work management system that requires data relating to time and costs (thus interfacing with your financial systems) but it should not be the system that employees rely on to get paid, otherwise it will get tied up every two weeks with payroll time entry.
  4. Do not get locked into a structure for which it is difficult to enter data or that lacks the necessary flexibility to be upgraded or modified. Consider who will be entering the data and their computer skills. The CMMS should have the flexibility to accept data from multiple sources and media, and ease of data entry will improve its accuracy and the resulting output. Also, the system should be flexible enough to allow the transfer of data during the design and construction phases of a project, e.g. Construction Operations Building information exchange (COBie).
  5. If you are considering replacing your existing system, do not get locked to “lost costs.” Don’t fall for the logic that what you have now is not doing the job but you have too much time and money invested in it to change. Consider only the time and cost to correct your existing system to meet your needs versus what a new system would cost.
  6. Do not limit yourself to looking at only one system early in the selection process. Develop a short list and “road test” each product. Establish rating criteria and score the actual performance of each candidate.
  7. Do not be the Beta test. Look for systems that have a proven track record with agencies similar to yours. Avoid unneeded complexity.

Failure of CMMS implementations is a continuing problem voiced by industry experts, and avoiding the pitfalls in decision-making about implementing or modifying CMMS in a maintenance organization means research must be a high priority. Conduct a thorough management study of the system to evaluate how it would be used in your organization and to determine the costs/benefits. Not all maintenance organizations require the use of a complete set of CMMS modules. Those that have implemented CMMS programs without adequate study typically fail to use the capabilities incorporated in the software and may eventually view the program as a failure.

CMMS would benefit significantly from a standardized asset identification system, in which each piece of equipment or building component is given an identification number common to all facilities throughout an organization. The General Services Administration (GSA) has such a system called the Government Asset Identification System. It uses National CAD Standards acronyms to identify assets and cross references CAD acronyms with Omniclass. If Government agencies adopt National CAD and Omniclass standards to identify their assets, they will expect to reduce costs, improve information for executive decisions, increase operational efficiency, and integrate facility management with new and existing technologies.

EMERGING ISSUES

The most notable emerging issue is the implementation of Building Information Modeling (BIM). BIM is an enabler that vastly improves the quality of information available to all facility tools. Information collected during design and construction can and should be used to commission facilities and validate performance. That model information can then be used to ensure the facility continues to perform as intended. A BIM can support all the applications identified earlier in this article. The National BIM Standard-United States™ provides the open formats which allow information to be captured and used by most CMMS tools. In fact, seeking out products that do support these open standards can minimize data lock with any specific vendor.

Guide to the Best Free CMMS

Computerized Maintenance Management Systems (CMMS) help businesses reduce maintenance costs. These solutions track assets including inventory, equipment and labor for identifying the costs associated with maintenance programs. CMMS focuses on:

  • Extending equipment life-cycles
  • Gaining the highest ROI on asset purchases
  • Organizing maintenance workflows
Chapters
  • Overview 
  • Features 
  • Use-Cases 
  • Market Trends 
  • Challenges 
  • Reliability Centered 

What is CMMS?

Computerized Maintenance Management Systems (CMMS) help 
standardize maintenance operations, allowing staff to control procedures and practices, as well as report on daily progress. In the past, maintenance departments have been considered the “necessary evil” of running a business. Accompanying software has also been regarded as a cost-center, so many organizations that could have benefited from CMMS sooner are just now understanding its potential. Through continual development, CMMS solutions have evolved around using data to improve the bottom line. Organizations now have the opportunity to maximize their ROI on high capital equipment and create a Reliability-Centered Maintenance (RCM) program for minimal equipment downtime.

History of CMMS Software

Over time, CMMS has transformed to meet maintenance needs across company sizes and industries. According to Jeff O’Brien of Maintenance Assistant Inc recently writing on American Machinist,the evolution of CMMS started in only the biggest factories with the most computing power.

The First CMMS

Around 1965, CMMS began as punch cards for reminding technicians to complete tasks, and later evolved into printed paper. Maintenance technicians would hand in work order checklists to data-entry clerks for submission to the CMMS. Prior to the mid-1980s, maintenance departments within manufacturing organizations were between 1-12% of a factory’s workforce. Companies investing in the technology managed only the largest asset-intensive businesses on the market.

Scaled Down with LAN Connection

The next generation of CMMS came in the 1980s when it became possible to scale down computers. Small to mid-sized companies were able to invest in the technology for the first time with the emergence of affordable hardware. Throughout the 1990s, companies were able to customize their CMMS solutions and operate through a local-area network (LAN) connection to quickly share data between computers for the first time. With customization came a variety of software features.

Browser and Cloud-based

Moving into the early 2000s, CMMS adapted to the web for browser-based access on local servers. System updates became more complex with highly customized needs for each client. Therefore around the mid-2000s with the rise of the internet, vendors began offering entirely web-hosted solutions with their own servers. Vendors became responsible for backing up the system’s data instead of the company’s IT department.

CMMS Today

The latest generation of CMMS was born on the cloud only in the past few years. This type of system has a multi-tenant architecture, allowing all clients to access the same application. Each user logs on to the system with a unique account, but has access to the same basic security, upgrades and features. This way, vendors are able to provide fast support with no downtime, and clients don’t need a dedicated IT team. Cloud computing continues to dominate the tech space as more people realize the benefits. Some trends happening now with CMMS include:

  • Faster implementation
  • Mobile access
  • Predictive reporting

Who Uses CMMS?

More and more companies are wanting to closely track maintenance expenses, causing CMMS vendors to expand the application of their technology. A variety of industries have started relying on CMMS for tracking maintenance associated costs. Typical users include:

  • Maintenance technicians
  • Floor managers
  • Business analysts
  • Operations administrators
  • Accounting clerks

Because many solutions even have self-service functionality so any employee can access the system for entering asset information or requesting maintenance actions. Traditionally, facilities, manufacturers and warehouses use CMMS for inventory and equipment tracking, therefore as well as assigning maintenance staff to work orders. Organizations that must closely manage their infrastructure, such as universities and hospitals, also have a strong need for organized maintenance operations and use CMMS.

Most importantly companies with transportation fleets need CMMS solutions for tracking vehicle maintenance expenses and driver information. Retail outlets, restaurant chains, hotels and resorts, and other property management businesses involving transportation and inventory also need a streamlined way to track maintenance costs. A wide range of industries use CMMS for asset tracking as small as a bolt within an engine, and as large as a bulldozer on a construction site. CMMS solutions are able to scale according to how closely you need to track your assets.

Top Benefits of CMMS

Implementing CMMS significantly influences maintenance operations. The following benefits come as a result of having full asset control:

  1. Increased maintenance information for better decision making – CMMS solutions allow companies to collect maintenance information, turning historical data into insights for a long-term understanding of how processes work.
  2. Extended equipment life-cycles and reduced downtime – Taking proper care of capital equipment leads to a higher total ROI, prolonging its use and increasing its life cycle.
  3. Increased budget accountability – Understand why equipment malfunctions and the best route for fixing it with the bottom line in mind. Keep your maintenance staff accountable for getting the job done right the first time with reliable solutions rather than spending money on continuous repairs.
  4. Reduced labor costs through better scheduling –
    Most importantly Your maintenance staff might often feel caught off guard by sudden breakdowns and unscheduled repairs.
  5. Improved compliance and standards tracking – Meet mandated regulations on how to inspect and repair equipment, keeping track of all maintenance standards.
  6. Cost savings on replacement parts and inventory stockpiles – Keep just the right balance of spare parts and inventory stock with reliable maintenance predictions. Rather than run out of stock when you need it most, or order unnecessary parts that go to waste, set your inventory levels and automate re-ordering parts only when needed.
  7. Simpler training process – CMMS solutions allow users to enter more than just equipment identification.
  8. Better performance measurements for establishing maintenance standards – Discover statistical trends for how long and how much money it takes to perform maintenance, then set performance standards for your staff to reach.
  9. Increased productivity – Reduce time spent searching through spreadsheets or paper files for pulling vital information on contracts, warranties and more.
  10. Improved customer satisfaction – While customer satisfaction can’t always be quantified, organizing your maintenance structure around transparency.

With one streamlined system, you’re able to carefully track assets in a number of ways. These assets include equipment, inventory and labor, and can be broken down into categories for carefully measuring costs by stock, parts, personnel, and more.

Similar Maintenance Solutions

CMMS is referred to by several terms. Most of these solutions have very similar features. Work Order Management Software: A work order is a request used to detail any maintenance need. Preventive Maintenance Software (PM): A PM system is a method of communicating work orders.

Predictive Maintenance Software (PdM): Predictive maintenance is a recent focus for solutions with analytic functions.Fleet Maintenance Software: Companies with transportation fleets need maintenance systems focused on tracking details on drivers, vehicles, leasing contracts, mileage and most importantly better assets.

Facilities Maintenance Software (FM): FM Software includes work orders for preventive maintenance. Computer Aided Facility Management Software (CAFM): This type of solution goes beyond maintenance needs and helps companies allocate all types of resources within the facility.

Enterprise Asset Management Software (EAM): For large companies, EAM solutions include a full suite of fields for tracking assets. This type of CMMS caters to companies with multiple locations touching on multiple business fields needing an all-in-one solution.

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Choosing the best Computerized Maintenance Management CMMS Software

The computerized maintenance management software is specifically designed to manage maintenance and operations of a single building or national enterprise. The CMMS stores important maintenance data on the desktop that provides any company the capability to track work orders, instantly determine the assets needs for reactive proactive maintenance and generate relevant usage reports.

Most companies are looking to invest in a computerized maintenance management software that helps to saves money in the long run and it extend asset lifespan. The CMMS software is also referred to as enterprise asset management software, facilities management software or preventative maintenance software. CMMS software is designed to improve productivity, reduce downtime on assets and increase efficiencies for maintenance staff, vendors and contractors.

 

CMMS Software minimum Features

Maxpanda CMMS software includes important features that will provide the best experience to any business owner. Some of the core offerings that you can find in most enterprise CMMS software are asset records, technical records, work order management, pm maintenance scheduling and service work capability.

 

  • Work orders – The work order helps to track the repairs and maintenance which outlines relevant information on the asset or location. What parts were required for replacement? Time tracking for maintenance staff and vendor, Task list required to complete prior to completing the work order, Updated photos on job completion and more.

 

  • Technician record – Includes technician records that allows users to store the important about the maintenance employees such as training, certifications and more.

 

  • Mobile interface – It has mobile application offering all employees 24/7 access to the software through Smartphones Tablets.

 

  • Asset records – The asset records centralize purchase dates, warranty, serial number, cost, location etc.

 

  • Multi-location management – It has a Multi-location management feature that has the capacity to handle several facilities within the software. Maxpanda includes up to 100 Sites, that’s 100 different databases managing unlimited amount of buildings, assets, parts and people in each Site.

 

  • Analytics and Reporting – Reporting and analytics can range from the fundamental template reports pre designed by the CMMS provider to customized analytics requested by the client.

 

  • Inventory management – It collects the information on the purchase orders, supplies and parts such as supplier, location, quantity, cost and more. Users receive email and push notifications when stock reordering ensuring fulfillment is always met for work.

 

  • Preventive maintenance scheduling – It helps to define, assign, execute and monitor the scheduled maintenance. It has options for scheduling maintenance depending on calendar dates or time such as cycles.

 

Guide to finding the Best Computerized Maintenance Management Software

CMMS software is an important tool for the organization. The maintenance and facilities management software increases workflow as usage increases. By using CMMS software you can check the details about the parts, assets, locations, buildings and procedures necessary to perform required jobs. When you are choosing the Computerized Maintenance Management Software you should consider:

  • Functionality

The functionality is one of the most important factors to consider when choosing the right maintenance software for your company. Does the app include all the minimum functions required to gather all relevant data for reporting and cost analysis? Is the CMMS simple to use for your nontechnical staff? Is initial setup quick and painless with no costs involved?

  • Mobile devices

Does the maintenance software support mobile devices? Does the software support all mobile devices that allow workers to maintain communication 24/7? The CMMS apps are specially designed for Android, iOS and other devices.

  • Customer reviews

Customer reviews are vital factors to consider before subscribing to any CMMS maintenance software. They offer details about the software such as features, cost, support and general usage. Read a few of Maxpanda’s customer reviews here.

  • Cost

Cost may or may not be a critical factor to consider. Self-hosted maintenance software is expensive when compared to a SaaS subscription model such as Maxpanda CMMS.

 

Benefits of Computerized Maintenance Management software

The Computerized Maintenance Management software is one of the most popular and required operational tools for maintaining capital asset costs towards any size company. This software allows the business owner to track related tasks such as cleaning, inspections and planned maintenance for each asset or building. Implementing CMMS software at the manufacturing plant is a perfect choice. The CMMS assists all users to create and track work order progress and extend equipment life by scheduling preventive maintenance on the assets, locations and tools in the facility.

Reducing Overtime

CMMS helps to reduce overtime and the requirement for emergency repairs and maintenance. With scheduled maintenance, the maintenance work is performed efficiently and within the manufacturers recommended time periods.

Planned Preventative Maintenance

This software automates the planned scheduling of the maintenance, cleaning and repairs. Switching to proactive maintenance helps extend equipment life dramatically while reducing the operating expense for the organization.

Reducing Paperwork

CMMS software helps to eliminate the need for clipboards, spreadsheets and miscellaneous paperwork that can be lost or forgotten. The software helps to capture the information automatically and permanently. Users may view details regarding the work orders on their mobile devices, desktop or print. Users do not need to search folders, filing cabinets and other storage bins to find the important details they need for maintenance and operations.

Enhanced Safety

The CMMS software helps the company in checking as well as maintaining the equipment irregularly. Offering high safety standards to reduce work loss due to accidents or insufficient information making the equipment safer for the environment and operator as a while.

Improving Productivity

One of the main benefits of using CMMS Maintenance software is improving productivity. It can be linked to the mobile device to allow access in real-time for relevant information about the equipment, location, customer, staff, part and invoice.

 

Maxwell Davidson, Support Analyst | app.maxpanda.com

 

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