When it comes to facility management, both teams and managers tend to get accustomed to comfortable routines. While this is understandable, it is tough to break old habits. Moving forward without change can be detrimental to your productivity.
This common situation doesn’t only apply to maintenance habits that no longer work, but to habits that were appropriate ten years ago but are no longer suitable today. Luckily, you don’t have to stay stuck in the past. With time, effort, dedication, and guidance, any facility can become optimized and updated. The first step toward progress is understanding what you’re currently doing wrong.
Printing Paper Work Orders
Just because a solution worked perfectly for your facility a decade ago doesn’t mean you can’t do better. Using paper and physical documents to organize your facility and track machinery is one of them. It’s a proven and traditional way to keep your facility in check. However, nowadays, paper documents are not worth the trouble thanks to affordable and easy-to-use digital alternatives. They tend to get lost, damaged, or even wrongly sorted, forcing you to spend hours looking for a single document in a pile.
Still, switching overnight from paper to digital documentation is near impossible. You first need to invest time in digitizing all of your current documents into archives. This process can include anything from scanning the documents to entering the data by hand to making them searchable for future reference. You also need to set aside time and resources to train your staff on using digital files and their assigned software best.
Not Recording Repair Histories
The average facility contains various components, equipment, machinery, and structures, all of which have specific needs for management and maintenance that differ depending on the asset’s rate of use. One way you can stay on top of your facility’s assets needs is by keeping repairs and maintenance histories recorded in a secure and accessible location.
Consider implementing CMMS software. CMMS stands for “computerized maintenance management system” and allows you to track all of your facility’s assets automatically. This software includes the equipment’s productivity and overall performance, as well as how often it needs maintenance and, when it does, which parts are the ones that are often broken.
Only Conducting Repairs When Necessary
When starting as a facility manager, only performing repairs when a piece of machinery needs seems like the most time and cost-efficient approach. However, it’s been proven repeatedly that preventative maintenance costs more time and money in the short run and keeps costs low and productivity high in the long run.
Not to mention, relying on unplanned downtime for your maintenance can delay it even more. For example, you may be forced to keep one of your machines running to meet a close deadline even though a critical part of it is broken, which could end up damaging the machine as a whole even more. Another aspect you need to consider is maintenance availability. Most maintenance technicians aren’t available 24/7. You need to book them in advance. By waiting until your machine breaks down, you risk either having to wait a while for your technician or paying an extra fee for an urgent appointment.
Not Evaluating Assets
The machinery and equipment in your facility are considered assets. If you’re not regularly evaluating your assets, you may miss opportunities to source more reliable and economical alternatives. With more reliability comes fewer unplanned emergencies and higher quality production.
This regular evaluation also allows you to determine the direction of your facility. Machinery that is a good return on investment makes for a better business model than their costly counterparts.
Not Holding Routine Training
Especially if you integrate new applications to organize your facility maintenance, training is necessary. Unfortunately, many backlogged operations are unable to hold team training consistently. Start small by holding weekly workshops and seminars and grow from there.
A correctly implemented repair schedule system prevents redundant technician repairs. Double-booking team members saps valuable production time and incurs extra costs. The bigger your facility, the harder it is to manage repair bookings.
That’s another reason to use CMMS software. It automatically books your appointments and keeps track of your employees’ times and schedules for you. While it’s an upfront investment, it pays off in the long run.
It’s a Never-Ending Race
Improvement is a race without a finish line. To keep your facility afloat and surpass the competition, you need to strive to be better. The most straightforward approach for improvement is switching out bad habits with effective routines and systems.