Friday, November 16, 2018

MRP Blog

In today’s hyper-connected world, organizations are using technology to address their maintenance and facility management needs in ways we have never seen before. This blog is written by our employees and industry experts about current maintenance resource planning topics that we hope will keep you up to date on current technology and give you the tools needed to exceed your maintenance goals and needs. 


Grab your favorite beverage, hang out a while and soak up some knowledge.


Craig Drouillard, President


What Do You Get With Your CMMS, Exactly?

At some point, everyone whose responsibility is to provide the best product at the most reasonable price reviews their purchases or processes related to maintenance. Just to make sure they are getting the best value and are seeing the benefits of their purchase. So what do you get with your CMMS?

The standard TeamWORKS solution includes the following:

  • Work Orders
  • Assets
  • Preventive Maintenance
  • Utitlies
  • Inventory
  • Intelligence Manager
  • Employees & Vendors
  • Attendance
  • Keys
  • Fuel Tracker
  • Administrative
  • Remote Request (Field Techs)


Compliance: A Maintenance Game

Having spent countless hours with maintenance professionals discussing their processes, I came to a realization recently. Managing compliance is nothing more than preventive maintenance (PM) and/or predictive maintenance (PdM) combined with the associated corrective maintenance and reports to satisfy the needs of the governing body.compliance

On the extreme side, Underground Storage Tanks (UST) require leak detection, spill prevention, corrosion protection and other systems to be maintained and inspected to maintain the appropriate licensing. On the other (extreme?) side, your boss wants you to provide a specific work order report every month or week or however frequently your boss thinks it’s necessary. The point is, whether you are maintaining compliance with the EPA or your boss it’s all a matter of tasks to be completed on a specific frequency and showing the results.


Managing Millennial Maintenance

According to a recent Forrester Research report titled ‘May The Force Of The Millennials Be With You’, your new Millennial maintenance techs are more entrepreneurial, adaptive and collaborative. One of the more (?) stunning insights is that 75% of Millennials sleep with their cell phones next to their bed. The latest generation of maintenance professionals needs more than a buy-a-module-as-you-need-it maintenance management solution. They want it all, right now, so they can explore it, work with it and adapt it to their daily work life. Are you ready?

For our aging Baby Boomer, sometimes low-tech, maintenance workforce, things are set to shift rapidly as Millennials move into those maintenance positions due to retirement and promotion or other attrition. Millennials come with their own ideas, having grown up with technology at their fingertips, about what should be available online, how much interaction with others is actually required to get the job done and why coming into the office every day to pick up a stack of papers is a pointless waste of time. As maintenance managers and supervisors take on this generation of workers, there are three things to keep in mind.


Predictive Maintenance and the Internet of Things: Problems Solved

If you live on the East Coast of the United States, then you know that it’s cold and snowy. If you live in central North Carolina, then you know if it’s snowy in the rest of Eastern US then we have to deal with ice and as I’ve known for years, ice means power outages. In my case this past weekend, 30 hours of power outage. Do you know what happens when you have 30 hours without power and no generator? You actually talk with your family. For the first 12 hours, I was quite content talking to my wife and kids, playing Monopoly® and enjoying the sound of silence. Then it happened. The silence was broken by my lovely wife asking why our generator did not start 12 hours ago. It’s a long story that I won’t go into but the result was me standing in line at a home improvement center waiting for the truck load of generators. During this extended wait I pondered the importance of preventive maintenance (PM). If I would have spent a bit of time with the generator over the past couple years, it would certainly have made this storm much easier to bear and look a lot less like standing in line waiting.

So that brings me to today’s topic. PM, or close to it.  Predictive maintenance (PdM) to be exact. For those who may not be aware, PdM is the same as PM with one important difference - instead of preforming routine maintenance based on a time frequency, the maintenance is performed when the asset tells you it needs it. For example, changing your oil in your car every three months is preventive while changing your oil every three thousand miles is predictive. In today’s world of maintenance management PdM can be achieved by monitoring the growing number of maintenance assets that exist in the internet of things (IoT).


Existing Assets: To Extend Their Life

The economy. It wreaks havoc on budgets when it’s down and most organizations plan for a down economy. Where does that show most clearly? In your budget, of course. In a maintenance budget the bottom line becomes extending the life of your assets for as long as possible to prevent or delay a capital expenditure hit to your already taxed budget.

maintenance worker toolboxAs a facility manager, accurate data is necessary to track the life of an asset over time. When the asset is first purchased, a long look at the variety of manufacturers you’ve purchased from in the past is essential. You’re looking for which manufacturer has sold you the most productive and least expensive asset over the lifetime of that asset. For example, if you’re looking for a refrigerator unit and you’ve got three from different manufacturers, a maintenance report and the costs associated with the maintenance will highlight which refrigerator unit has performed in the most cost effective manner over time. If your data isn’t already loaded in your CMMS, it’s easy enough to extrapolate or import from another source.

After you’ve made the decision to purchase, add the warranty information and suggested preventive maintenance dates. A good CMMS will flag any warrantied maintenance before you spend money on repairs covered by warranty. Using your data and any other accumulated repair data allows you to implement an intelligent preventive maintenance schedule designed to prolong the life of the asset.

Sometimes corrective repairs are necessary and unavoidable. By running regular reports on the repair costs for a specific type of asset, you can adjust your budget to manage the expense. Running these reports regularly will also help you when you run a vendor search in your CMMS to discover who does the best, most cost-effective and longest lasting work.

With the proper preventive maintenance plan, the data in place to help forecast your spending and a proactive mindset to maintain not only mission-critical equipment but to extend the life of every piece of equipment, the expense hits to your budget should be both manageable and predictable.

Bridge Integration Systems : Integrating On-Site and Cloud Systems

TeamWORKS is a big proponent of integrating systems. Entering data twice is not only a waste of time but also creates inaccuracies in data, and really, why put a double-entry system in place when it’s so easy to share information between systems? BIS blog postSo can system integration be done in today’s world of on-site and cloud systems? Yes.

It’s very likely your enterprise has one of two solutions:

1.       You may have many different systems (e.g. accounting, maintenance, building automation, compliance) and each of these systems were chosen because they are best in class systems but they do not talk to each other.

2.       You run an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system that shares data but does not adequately meet the needs of all the stakeholders. Many of the subsystems within this ERP are great but some are greatly lacking.

The ideal enterprise solution has best in class systems, even when it is an ERP system, and integration ensures accurate data is shared. It is important to include each department in the planning stages and allow them to select their own system and not be forced to an enterprise standard. The reason is simple, each department manager was selected for their expertise in their area, let them manage with a system that fits their needs and desires.


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