How to save time with better maintenance reporting

How everyone at your facility can save time with better maintenance reporting

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This article explores how maintenance reporting can impact everyone in a facility and how to improve the reporting process to save time, no matter what role you’re in.


Regardless of your role or title, time is a valuable resource and sometimes it feels like there’s just not enough of it. So today we’re looking at one of the biggest areas where everyone in your chain of command could probably be saving a lot more time— reporting.

First things first: using pen and paper or Excel spreadsheets to manage maintenance can be inefficient and a huge waste of time. These outdated maintenance techniques and methods can add hours of work to your day once you add up the impact of lost paperwork, documenting protocols by hand, combing through files to construct reports, and data entry.

How better maintenance reporting makes a difference for everyone

The right maintenance software can eliminate many of these inefficiencies and give you back some time, especially when it comes to reporting

Being able to automate maintenance reporting and target specific data makes reporting faster and easier and helps everyone at a facility make quicker, more informed decisions. This can include decisions on everything from which asset to work on next to the best way to close a massive new contract. The entire organization can gain a huge advantage with this more efficient decision-making process.

These time savings can lead to a healthier bottom line, a safer work environment, less downtime, and a more sustainable preventive maintenance strategy.

Who saves time with digital maintenance reporting (and why does it matter)?

Maintenance technician

Accurate and useful maintenance reports start with the technician. Without their diligence in logging information, there isn’t enough solid data to build maintenance reports. When entering data becomes too time-consuming it takes a back seat to other priorities, like repairing another asset. This creates inaccurate or missing data. Technicians can save time by swapping pen and paper or Excel spreadsheet for maintenance software. Software, like a mobile CMMS, gives technicians an opportunity to log information at the worksite with the touch of a couple buttons. This replaces the time spent filling out reports or logging data into a spreadsheet at the end of a long day.

Maintenance manager

Maintenance managers are often the ones responsible for creating maintenance reports. They are the ones that must painstakingly comb through days, weeks or months of paper files or Excel spreadsheets to add up and calculate the data. This system increases the chances of mistakes within maintenance reports. Worse still, because this process takes up so much time, reports are often skipped when more important matters came up. With maintenance software, reports can be created with templates. They can also be automated and sent right to the maintenance manager’s inbox on a regular basis. This saves the maintenance manager time and improves the maintenance reporting process.

Operations manager

The operations manager uses maintenance reporting to make critical decisions on production schedules, budgeting and more. Even a single maintenance report can impact everything from labour use to health and safety protocols. Operations managers need to be able to identify and analyze important information from a maintenance report quickly and with certainty. If the process takes too long, time-sensitive decisions may be pushed back and deadlines can be missed. This can have a huge, negative ripple effect on the facility’s operations. With maintenance software, the data is more accurate, reports can be customized and extra information can be generated in a few minutes. With these capabilities, operations managers can be more agile, make smarter decisions and create an atmosphere of reliability within a facility.

Being able to automate maintenance reporting and target specific data makes reporting faster and easier and helps everyone at a facility make quicker, more informed decisions.

Engineer

Engineers are focused on increasing asset reliability and ensuring efficient processes for asset management and production. Maintenance reports inform the decisions of engineers. Using maintenance software allows them to generate reports and spot trends and patterns from the results. It also helps engineers apply what they learn from these reports in a practical way to improve asset reliability. This is a much faster process than trying using pen and paper or Excel spreadsheets to mine data for trends. When decisions are made quicker, everything from energy use to asset efficiency can be optimized sooner. This can lead to lower costs for inventory, labour and more.

Executive

Saving time on maintenance reports is critical for executives who want maintenance to move from a cost centre to a profit centre. Executives make huge decisions every day, like forming partnerships or making large purchases. Accessing and understanding information quickly means executives can make these decisions faster. Making these choices a few days or weeks sooner could mean a huge boost in the bottom line. Maintenance software speeds up reporting and thus the knowledge transfer up the chain to the C-suite. It also allows for customization, so data is understandable and reports inform specific decisions with up-to-the-minute information.

Fiix CMMS features that help save time on maintenance reports

The following are five tools available in Fiix’s CMMS software that will help everyone at a facility, create and analyze maintenance reports quicker and smarter:

Custom reports builder and scheduler

Fiix’s CMMS has over 100 pre-built templates for maintenance reports that can be generated instantly or scheduled at regular intervals. Custom maintenance reports can also be set up and automated in the CMMS. The custom maintenance reports writer allows you to create a library of reports tailored for your specific needs. Design and build reporting templates to deploy quickly and save them in the CMMS so you can run them at any time.

The custom report builder and scheduler makes it easy to run reports and get the data you need, when you need it. The ease of use allows everyone in the facility to quickly analyze trends and spot recurring problems. The information garnered from maintenance reports can be used to track maintenance costs, optimize PM schedules, analyze repair processes, review KPIs, and forecast when parts need to be replaced.

Failure codes

Failure codes follow a problem/cause/action framework within the CMMS. The first step is to list common problems for an asset, the likely causes of each problem, and each possible action to correct the cause. You can then set up the CMMS with an asset’s most common failure codes. Technicians can quickly select a pre-set failure code while completing a work order. They can then view all the details of a problem, why it happened and some options for how to fix it.

Failure codes make reporting quicker and more effective for everyone. Technicians can specify the source of a problem and the solution with a couple of clicks. Managers can create maintenance reports based on common failure codes in just a few minutes. The reports can point to trends that will help prevent future breakdowns. Failure codes also help engineers identify and eliminate repeat issues, assess preventive maintenance, and improve asset reliability. Finally, reports on common failure codes can help executives reduce costs.

User profiles

User profiles can be set up on Fiix’s CMMS and populated with information about each member of the maintenance team. The profile can include information like work order history and health and safety certifications. The CMMS reporting function allows maintenance managers to quickly create reports for an individual user. The skill level of all employees and the progress of their work can be tracked, among other factors.

Having user reports at your fingertips could have a variety of benefits. Preparing for and passing audits is easier, as regular reporting on employee training makes it quicker to identify areas of improvement and collect proper documentation. Labour costs can be maximized. Technicians with a special knack for repairing certain assets can be identified, helping to reduce downtime.

Saving time on maintenance reports is critical for executives who want maintenance to move from a cost centre to a profit centre.

Online/offline tracker

The Fiix CMMS allows users to set an asset as offline when it is undergoing preventive maintenance or repairs. The user can then set the asset as online when it is ready for production again. The CMMS automatically notifies users about system availability. It also tracks the amount of time an asset is offline without the need for timers, pen and paper or Excel spreadsheets.

The online/offline data can easily be pulled when creating maintenance reports. Anyone, from a maintenance manager to an engineer or an executive, can view which assets experienced the most downtime in a given period. This data can be used to calculate several maintenance metrics, like mean time between failure. This information can be valuable when making all sorts of financial decisions, such as repair or replace, labour usage, and production schedules.

Inventory database

Fiix’s CMMS gives users the ability to track all parts and supplies in one place which can save you lots of time when creating inventory reports. Having all inventory data on one platform allows you to track quantities, turnover frequency, cycle counts and more, all in one report. You no longer have to spend all day in the stock room or running through spreadsheets to tabulate inventory and make calculations.

Detailed, accessible and up-to-the-minute inventory data can have a huge impact on productivity, costs and asset reliability. It allows for smarter purchasing decisions, more accurate budgeting, shorter repair times, and more efficient PM scheduling. Maintenance managers can select vendors more easily. Engineers can recommend parts that lead to improved asset reliability. Lastly, executives can easily send reports to those who need them most, like the finance department, and help build budgets that work better for the company.

Learn more about the benefits of maintenance management software and how it can be used to help everyone at a facility make maintenance more efficient:

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