Attention! Your facility has a serious leak that must be repaired immediately.Okay, perhaps it’s not a leak from a pipe or chemicals but chances are your maintenance department has experienced this leak before. The serious leak we mean is the one in your maintenance budget. It often appears as a reactive repair, a misplaced spare part, or the time you spent on having to create that maintenance report. Inefficient practices such as these leak valuable resources from your maintenance department; costing you more money and using less time efficiently.
Breakdowns and repairs are bound to occur from time to time. However, high levels of reactive maintenance may be a sign of your team working hard to catch up instead of properly plan ahead. This often wastes time in a number of ways that aren’t always obvious. But instead of focusing on just the problem, it’s important to come up with some solutions. Here are five ways your maintenance department is losing money and how to solve it.
1. Energy Efficiency
The average office building spends approximately 19% more than necessary on electricity and gas. It’s easy to think of certain costs as being unavoidable, but in reality, simple maintenance techniques can make huge differences in energy consumption — and cost.
One study from the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory found that commercial buildings could cut their heating and cooling costs by 38%, through simple modifications to their rooftop HVAC systems. Other factors like poor maintenance or use of outdated equipment can further increase the cost of maintaining HVAC and water heating. Other factors that can harm energy efficiency include inadequate insulation, poor sealing and old or inadequately-serviced appliances.
Originally, some companies would attempt to solve this by having reductions in labor hours, rather than using the allotted time to improve work efficiency.
With CMMS software, set schedules of routine and preventive maintenance tasks like servicing heaters and resealing windows. This way, facilities automatically receive work orders and reminders. This can help with making more strategic choices. You’ll be able to organize your energy-saving projects over time, while controlling M&R spend.
Another use in maintenance management software is to set your seasonal tasks including installs on water heaters or changing air filters, This helps to fit these tasks into your workers’ existing schedule — and your budget.
2. Standardized Work Processes
An organizations depends strongly on its people and having clear procedures helps the team to complete work successfully. But, as your business grows, you or your manager may not always know what everyone is assigned to do each day. Without a standardized maintenance procedure, some staff may use inefficient methods that waste time and resources on work orders.
More importantly, a lack of standardization may introduce work gaps, job hazards and irregularities into your maintenance procedures. This may lead to inconsistent quality of work, decreased life span of assets, or introduce work related injuries. What happens if some of your maintenance department skip a step when completing an inspection or repairing a machine? What if they put things together incorrectly, or fail to check a gauge regularly?
Maintenance management software lets you distribute the tools for maintenance best practices across your entire organization. You can standardize work templates for preventive maintenance and repair procedures using detailed work orders. Hippo CMMS will send out automated work orders to each maintenance staff based on the date or frequency.
Follow up and verify that everyone has completed their assigned tasks without going through numerous files and spreadsheets. With on demand work order management software lets you sort work orders and see which ones have been completed. Set maintenance reports brings all the information together, using user-friendly charts that measure productivity, costs, overtime, date of completion and other key metrics to give you deeper insight into your maintenance history, and detect problem areas that need attention.
3. Time Management
Inspectioneering Journal published a 2015 study that revealed that organizations which don’t properly schedule or plan maintenance, only had 35% of its time spent on maintenance work — that’s 2 hours 48 minutes in an 8 hour shift! The rest of the time is used (and at times wasted) elsewhere — 33% is spent on work delays, travel time and adjusted hours, 17% finding proper resources (tools, manuals, etc.), and 15% on authorized staff breaks and personal time. When maintenance work schedules are less structured, reactive maintenance takes up a surprising amount of time.
By Matt Midas at GenesisSolutions. This article appears in the March/April 2015 issue of Inspectioneering Journal
Good planning and scheduling can increase productivity to 65%, meaning your workers will be spending 5 hours 12 minutes per shift on maintenance work. Not only does this help to reduce labor costs, but with good planning, your organization may:
- Reduce maintenance backlogs
- Anticipate and avoid future equipment failures
- Increase asset uptime
- Improve asset and spare part management
- Make smarter asset repair and purchasing decisions
Asset and Equipment Management System saves records of the repair history of all equipment along with meter readings, and improves spare parts management by linking associated parts with assets.
Not only does this make repairs faster and more efficient, but it also lets you learn from equipment failure. If a part breaks, you’ll be able to note warning signs, and schedule preventive maintenance on other machines.
Look gathering parts and information. Hippo’s spare parts management and work order management ensure workers have all the tools and information to cut down the amount of time spent on repairs. You’ll also be able to schedule jobs in a more logical order. Work orders that involve the same tools, services or the same type of equipment can be organized by location or work category to cut the time workers spend walking back and forth through your facility.
4. Vendor and Contractor Selection
You might have a current system to select the most cost-effective vendor. But at times, the process can actually be quite difficult. Selection of the right vendor often involves the weigh-in of several factors, including reliability, time to delivery, bulk discounts and quality of parts. In the case of contractors, there are also pricing structures, warranties and track records to consider -- for a mission critical asset, it might be worth hiring someone you trust, even if it’s at a higher rate.
And if you’re a reactive maintenance department, lack of foresight can further increase your vendor and contractor expenditures. If you run out of an essential part, or experience a critical asset failure, you could be stuck with whatever vendor is available on short notice, even if they provide less quality service.
Using maintenance reports, you can review and compare vendors head-to-head. With each vendor, look over detailed part, delivery and pricing history to see who gives you the best deal overall. The all your information laid out with charts and graphs, you'll reduce your time filing through pages of data to make the most economical decision. Preset inventory reports functionality will alert you when parts run low, so you’ll always be able to order replacements with time to spare.
CMMS reports also enables you to compare contractors and workers. You can look at hours logged, time spent to complete work orders, completion rates and other essential data. It makes it simple to choose the most cost effective contractor, assign the best staff to particular maintenance tasks, or even decide which jobs make sense to outsource.
Resource and Vendor Management Systems further streamline working with vendors, by allowing you to send them work orders directly, using the same system you use for in-house workers. You can select them by work order category, assign detailed work orders, and forward them an email with details listing what they need to do their job. Costs, response time and other metrics can then be logged following completion of the work order. You can then review vendor performance and assign future contracts based on performance without time-consuming record keeping.
5. Unorganized Inventory Management
Your facilities often require much of the space for storing inventory, spare parts and equipment used in core business operations. Inventory management involves tracking accurate levels of stock items or spare parts for repairs. If information isn’t accurate you may find yourself with excess in inventory levels, missed opportunities to save on stock re-orders or running short of spare parts for equipment repairs.
Having an intuitive Inventory Management System makes spare parts management smarter. Track parts from facility location, equipment model, inventory number, work category, or by supplier. That means you’ll be able to quickly understand inventory across your organization, and eliminate redundant parts and equipment. An inventory management system helps with transfers of parts between facilities; set minimum and maximum thresholds to prevent running overstock or understock.
Save money by working smarter, not harder
Organizations can no longer afford to think of their maintenance department as a reactive team to fix things. Businesses have now designed maintenance programs in mind that makes maintenance operation more efficient and reliable. By learning to effectively organize your efforts, manage assets, equipment and parts, and prioritize work, you’ll spend less time making emergency repairs, and more time building a facility management system. CMMS software has become a more common element in the success of facility maintenance.
Learn to make maintenance management more affordable for the company, and easier for your maintenance team.
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