Most maintenance managers and planners are well aware of how CMMS software aka maintenance management software can improve maintenance operations and reduce expenses. However, it can be difficult to get buy in from senior management or business owners to purchase such software and put it to use. After all there are several other areas besides maintenance software where such capital expenditures can be made – nearly all of which can improve business operations. How does one justify putting limited budget dollars to get maintenance software versus spending it elsewhere?
Maintenance is one of those unheralded areas which is frequently ignored when there is no major crisis. Here we will attempt to show how the reports and features available in maintenance software like FastMaint CMMS can be very helpful to senior management and business owners to cut costs and improve profitability.
FastMaint CMMS software has applicability to wide variety of businesses. In our examples we will consider two different business types – a small to mid-size manufacturing operation and a small to medium sized commercial facility that provides services to different customers (e.g. a hotel/ resort, an office complex, a restaurant, etc.). However, they could just as well be applicable to other operations that have a lot of equipment and/ or facilities e.g. utility operators, refiners and so on.
One of the single most valuable reports in FastMaint CMMS is the one page Statistics report. This has been specially designed to be shared with senior management or business owners. You do not have to have access to FastMaint CMMS - the maintenance manager can print it out and give it to you. It contains no complex and difficult to understand statistics. The report shows performance in a current period (Last 30 Days) versus performance in two prior and similar periods. This makes it easier to catch possible issues or trends. Some items you should look for:
- Pending work orders from prior periods: You should see if an unusual number of work orders created in prior periods are still pending. If any of these are for important assets (equipment or locations) you have cause for concern. Incomplete maintenance on an asset can mean poor product quality or service or even loss of revenue if product or service cannot be delivered.
- Preventive vs. Breakdown Time Spent: This ratio is expressed as a percentage. A low percentage means that most maintenance is of the breakdown type. This is expensive since it means that an asset (an equipment or location) is unexpectedly out of service. If you have a manufacturing operation you probably have lost production or product quality. If you are a commercial facility you probably have upset customers or have lost revenue because you cannot rent the facility (e.g. hotel rooms) to customers.
- Equipment with most breakdown work order time: Even if the “Preventive vs. Breakdown Time Spent” ratio looks good, check and see if the same equipment keeps cropping up as having most breakdown work orders. Make sure that it is not a critical asset whose lack of availability will hinder delivery of product or service. If it is a critical asset, you may need to talk to your maintenance and operations managers to see if it is time to replace it or do a complete refurbishment.
You can see "Key Maintenance Management Statistics For Maintenance Planners" for a more in-depth look at other statistics.
Work Order Analysis Report:
This is another report that can be printed out and given to you for review. You want it to use the “Cost & Duration Variance” report template showing aggregates by Month. This report shows you how the costs and durations of different classes of work orders have varied from estimates. If you see large unexplained variances it typically means there is a problem with maintenance and operations. You need to dig in deeper and find the underlying causes – it could be maintenance and operations are not working well together or some assets may have reached the end of their lives and require more maintenance than planned. Both these issues besides increasing maintenance costs will probably result in revenue and customer loss due to delays delivering products or services.
Equipment Maintenance Calendar:
While this is not a report that executive management typically needs to see it has important implications for co-operation between maintenance and operations staff. Basically it shows when equipment is expected to be unavailable because of planned preventive maintenance. Timing is everything since equipment or facilities being unavailable during a peak period will be unacceptable. So you want to ensure that information in this report is shared between departments and adjustments are made to maintenance schedules as needed.
Asset Register & Asset Replacement:
Most industrial plants and commercial facilities have quite a few equipment and other assets which have been purchased over several years. Frequently there is no centralized list of such assets and their costs. This is where an asset maintenance program can really help. FastMaint CMMS can be used to maintain a list of such assets and also track ongoing maintenance costs incurred on them. Purchasing equipment is normally a significant capital outlay. You will be offsetting these costs by making provisions for depreciation based on expected equipment life. What happens if the equipment needs to be replaced earlier than expected due to missed maintenance? On the converse side what are the benefits to be expected if say the equipment lasts 10% longer on average because of better maintenance practices made possible with support from the CMMS software? These sorts of items will impact your balance sheet and profit & loss statements.
Maintenance Software Selection Guide
If you are considering maintenance management software and are not sure where to start, this free “CMMS Software Selection Guide” will be quite useful. With a variety of questions and checklists it can help you identify the right product for your organization or you can pass along the PDF guide to others who may be responsible for the selection process.