There are a couple of distinct ways of dealing with fire risks: call in the fire department after an inferno, or install and maintain equipment that prevents fire in your building. There are no marks for guessing the better approach. In facility maintenance, maintaining systems to prevent a fire would be deemed Preventive Maintenance (PM).
Preventive maintenance is a set of routines an organization follows to keep its equipment and assets viable. Using good PM practices prevents equipment failure, employee downtime, and emergency repair costs. While most PM activities are scheduled, ad hoc maintenance is often warranted if an asset shows signs of fatigue or imminent breakdown.
Preventive management is not achievable if your company does not have automated systems, as manual management inevitably allows too many asset failures to slip through the cracks. Companies, therefore, usually delegate this sacred function to preventive maintenance software bundled on a Computerized Maintenance Management System (CMMS) platform. A CMMS system can foresee an asset crisis before it happens, letting you take timely remedial steps by tracking key performance indicators.
Salient features of preventive maintenance software suites include checklists, time-based maintenance management, reporting and statistics, and alerts and notifications.
Providing a checklist of tasks to accomplish to the technician ensures that no significant component of a maintenance job is omitted or forgotten.
Checklists are universally recognized and practical tools implemented to track what needs to be done for a specific maintenance job. When the job is done, the checklist gets added to your CMMS database. The software keeps tabs on a job’s requirements and each step performed while attending to the service request.
You can create checklists for various maintenance tasks – equipment inspections, walkthroughs, safety checks, lengthy maintenance procedures. Over time, these checklists can be fine-tuned for improved maintenance results.
When a maintenance job is complete, the attending technician can mark it complete in the checklist. This step keeps your software as well as other technicians updated and thus avoids double-work. Tracking finished maintenance repairs also provides a vital history for each asset, allowing supervisors to plan future fixes.
Time-based Maintenance Management Keeps Everyone Aligned
Scheduling regular inspections and maintenance lets you address backlog effectively. Schedules could range from weekly for some assets to yearly for others.
Cyclic work schedules form the backbone of preventative maintenance. There is nothing better than your maintenance software’s database to host your maintenance schedules.
Preventative maintenance software allows you to create tasks that are repeated and logged at regular intervals. This feature is a natural need because PM practices evolve, and you will need to create additional scheduled tasks (or delete redundant ones).
If desired, you can even assign specific repetitive tasks to specific personnel who excel at those tasks. This component allows you to identify team member strengths and promote maintenance consistency throughout an asset’s life cycle.
Reporting and Statistics
Maintenance software tracks organizational assets and the history of their issues, enabling the software to compile reports and statistics that let you fine-tune your maintenance regimen and inventory management.
A CMMS system works with existing data: tasks, schedules, checklists, work orders, and maintenance personnel stats/scores. The aggregation of all this data in a single repository (the software’s database) permits instant, complete access of maintenance data across the organization.
Your maintenance software can read the runes, too – using existing data. It can chart likely trends, which better prepares the maintenance team for future needs. Using these extrapolated trends, you can refine preventative maintenance schedules to align better with emerging needs as head of the maintenance department.
Alerts and Notifications
If an asset shows signs of impending dysfunction, preventive maintenance software can pick up the warning signs via sensors and critical performance indicators built into a CMMS-enabled asset setup. The software can then issue red alerts for urgent action that preempts asset failure.
Your CMMS software can automatically notify your staff of actions needed soon – you don’t even have to draft an email or SMS to anyone. This variable adds ease and reliability of communication to your company’s preventative maintenance setup.
Automated notifications mean your workforce has more time for doing other imperative tasks.
Preventive Maintenance Software Provides Immense Long-Term Benefits
The trade of preventive maintenance, by its nature, involves ever-increasing loads of data and their analysis. The right way to deal with the data is to hook CMMS into your work environment. Setting up a CMMS system to take care of your preventive maintenance will cost your company once and pay off for years to come.