Your Guide to Software Selection

The Big List of CMMS Features and Functionality

Computerized maintenance management software (CMMS) helps you keep track of your firm’s physical assets and manage their upkeep. It provides management support, data maintenance and tracking of such assets as a delivery fleet so you can always pinpoint each vehicle’s location.

CMMS software also logs maintenance and repairs records, locates the parts or materials required, tracks associated costs and manages related workflows. All these CMMS features improve your the overall productivity of your organization by reducing the downtime normally associated with equipment-related tasks.

Reporting and Analysis

As soon as you enter data into your CMMS, it becomes available for any reports or analyses you request. Asset information becomes part of the database, and any potential problem it reveals automatically generates an alert to the manager of the maintenance department. The alert also offers recommendations for solutions.

Once the job is completed, the technician enters the information regarding the work itself, the timeframe, any parts or materials involved in the repair and the labor data. The system draws on this information to support future maintenance and repair scheduling.

Other asset information you can record in your CMMS database includes:

• Work history
• Work tasks and scheduling
• Equipment history and lifecycles
• Customer feedback
• Labor resources, skill levels and qualifications
• Utilities use

Five types of analysis offered by many CMMS platforms include:

1. Site comparison analysis – a breakdown of maintenance and repair expenses across two or more company locations
2. Site summary – all the information, including maintenance details, assets history, work completed, work scheduled and the associated costs for a single work site
3. Labor report – broken down by labor type, work orders, regular and overtime hours, labor cost details and labor time details
4. Parts used by each asset – frequency, location, cost per related work order
5. Analysis of trends — cost of repair/maintenance by work order, by time frame, by age of assets, and future cost predictions

The best CMMS also facilitate customized analyses. You can specify parameters for your specific industry or your company’s unique requirements.

Work Order Management

Another customizable function of computerized maintenance management software is oversight of work orders for the maintenance and/or repair of assets. The system automatically generates work orders according to a preset maintenance schedule and responds to repair requests entered by your authorized personnel.

You can configure your CMMS to request approval for either type of work order, or you can allow it to automatically issue the orders to your maintenance manager. You can identify filters that route the request by user, by contractor, by urgency or by priority. You can also put a customized workflow into place that standardizes all of your maintenance and repair request processes.

The system organizes work requests by codes and assigns each one a number so that you and your maintenance crew can locate it quickly if needed. Then, CMMS tracks the progress of the work request, from issuance of the order through the planning, scheduling and completion phases, ensuring timely and effective follow-through.

Purchasing

The purchasing module is integral to CMMS functionality. Once the need for a specific repair or maintenance action enters the system, the purchasing module initiates a materials and parts requisition to supply your maintenance crew with the items it needs to perform quickly and effectively.

If a key item is temporarily unavailable, the system automatically issues a notice to the maintenance manager, who can then adjust the work schedule accordingly. Without this type of control, unexpected delays often cause problems.

The purchasing component of CMMS may also include a master parts catalog. Most systems offer forms and functionality for purchase orders, invoices, receiving and returns.

Predictive Maintenance

The ability to predict equipment issues or failure gives your maintenance crew a chance to solve problems before they occur. Accessing the necessary information from its archives, your CMMS system bases its predictions on hard data.

It monitors your equipment to collect real-time data to predict emergent issues. Then, it cross-references this information with historic data to pinpoint potentially imminent problems. Predictive maintenance is not strictly precise, but it is an important function that can be extremely helpful in keeping your equipment issues to a minimum.

Preventive Maintenance

When you have a robust preventive maintenance (PM) program in place, you can rest assured that you are doing all you can to prolong the life and effectiveness of your business assets. The most valuable benefits of this function are minimizing the expense of emergency repairs and preventing asset deterioration. Some of the CMMS features that support this important aspect of asset management include:

• Generating PM work orders according to several types of criteria
• Creating work orders according to schedule
• Generating work orders according to the last completed maintenance date
• Triggering preventive maintenance work orders according to meter data
• Tagging new parts with PM information
• Consolidating quarterly, monthly and weekly PM scheduling into a master schedule
• Allowing the maintenance manager to override preset PM scheduling when work is necessary sooner
• Routing PM information and scheduling to multiple locations or equipment
• Batching work orders or singling out equipment for PM

Asset Management

Cloud-based CMMS software helps you to actively manage assets across a number of business locations in real time. You and your maintenance manager have access this information from any connected device, so you need never lose track of your valuable equipment.

The system curates such information as maintenance records and scheduling, service contracts, calibration points, safety certifications and procedures, meter readings and inspection requirements. It also tracks the specific location of each asset, plus any equipment failures, error codes and downtime.

Your system uses asset management information to generate reports, make recommendations regarding repair and replacement, and to create work orders for general maintenance or emergency repairs. It also bases scheduling on equipment locations, usage and condition.

Inventory Control

An updated inventory of maintenance materials and repair parts keeps your service department apprised of supply shortages that affect daily scheduling. It tracks the physical location of these items, facilitating quick transfers between multiple business locations.

This CMMS functionality also gives authorized personnel instant access to determine availability and cost for any item. It can provide vendor information such as location and ordering terms. Also, top inventory management software can make suggestions for alternative parts or materials when the items your maintenance department needs are unavailable.

As your employees use parts or materials, the CMMS inventory module adjusts its totals accordingly, and when the supply of any particular item runs low, the system alerts your purchasing department. This ensures that when a technician must make an emergency repair, the parts are available on the spur of the moment, and the equipment will be back in service without costly delays.

If your business has assets that need periodic maintenance and daily management, a CMMS system will be a valuable addition to your firm. It works behind the scenes to ensure that your equipment is trackable, in top condition and provides effective service longer. Learn more by accessing our CMMS requirements template.

References

1. http://www.buildings.com/buzz/buildings-buzz/entryid/211/8-ways-a-cmms-benefits-facility-managers.aspx
2. http://blog.e-isg.com/2013/03/05/eam-cmms-differences/
3. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Computerized_maintenance_management_system
4. http://cmms-university.com/asset-management-software/
5. https://www.wbdg.org/om/cmms.php
6. http://www.dpsi.com/blog/is-your-maintenance-management-program-reactive-or-proactive/

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