This article was written by Andrew Ly, content editor at Better Buys.
A malfunctioning cement kiln. An overheated data server. A broken wind turbine.
When equipment fails, it can bring business to a standstill. Not only that, it can lead to good customers leaving or permanent damage to your reputation.
If your company is still keeping maintenance records on paper or fixing machines only after they fail, it’s going to cause problems for everyone involved.
A computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) isn’t just for big manufacturers and industrial companies. Any business that invests heavily in physical assets—machines, equipment, or property—needs to develop a proper maintenance plan, which begins with the right technology.
Here are three important industries (beyond manufacturing) that benefit from a proper maintenance plan and a CMMS solution.
Energy companies, which include oil and gas, electric, water, solar, wind, and plant-based fuels, typically rely on high-cost machinery to extract resources and generate power.
These businesses need to make sure their assets are as productive and long-lasting as possible to stay profitable. That’s why companies in this industry would be wise to invest in a CMMS solution.
Maintenance software can streamline equipment use and improve asset life by ensuring that spare parts are available at the right time and equipment is routinely inspected. It can also monitor data on machine conditions, such as noise, vibration, temperature, pressure, and flow, to determine if maintenance is required.
A CMMS solution can analyze how much time and money is spent on maintenance and on which assets, so these businesses can develop the right strategy to cut costs and boost revenue.
In addition, energy companies need to comply with regulatory standards for safety, power output, and efficiency. Otherwise, they may face government fines or costly litigation for worker injuries.
CMMS solutions help these businesses stay compliant by keeping worker safety procedures readily available, tracking maintenance histories, and documenting completed inspections. These automated processes create a permanent and easily auditable maintenance record for maximum compliance.
Technology companies, such as data centres, own and manage many types of mission-critical assets, including:
- Uninterruptible power supplies
- Emergency generators
- Power distribution units
- Transfer switches
- Computer room air conditioners and other HVAC units
- Fire protection systems
Data centres and e-commerce businesses, in particular, face the need to maintain uninterrupted services. If a large corporation cannot access its data or if shoppers cannot purchase from a website, millions of dollars in productivity or revenue could be lost.
To stay competitive, these businesses need to have constant uptime, which depends on all equipment running smoothly. Relying solely on reactive maintenance isn’t an option.
CMMS software gives companies the data to develop a preventive or predictive maintenance program, so that vital assets, like data servers or power generators, don’t fail unless there’s a backup in place.
The software can also automate the maintenance process by tracking equipment usage, triggering a maintenance alert after a certain threshold, and generating a work order, all without human intervention.
A CMMS solution not only optimizes equipment performance, but also reduces labour costs as businesses can call in technicians only when needed.
Construction companies rely on manufacturing from large factories that use expensive machinery to produce building materials that are literally the foundation of any construction project, like cement.
But planning and maintaining a timeline and budget is a difficult task, and a disruption in manufacturing could cause huge problems to multiple projects that are already under time and budget constraints.
CMMS solutions help large-scale facilities figure out the right maintenance strategy to stay on track. The software can measure equipment usage in distance or hours and compare it against historical data and manufacturer guidelines to assess the risk of breakdown.
With this information, maintenance managers can make an informed decision on whether to repair or replace an asset or run it to failure. In some situations, it might make sense to let a piece of equipment fail.
A CMMS solution can also make labour and inventory costs more transparent, which not only helps with budgeting, but also keeps organizations accountable.
In large-scale facilities, equipment is often spread across locations, making it a hassle to get maintenance paperwork to technicians and engineers. In this case, a mobile CMMS should be a priority so all workers can have work orders and maintenance history at their fingertips.
Lastly, in a facility that involves mass-production of building materials, health and safety is a great risk. A CMMS can help ensure procedures and guidelines are being adhered to, and major incidents are avoided.
CMMS solutions can benefit a broad range of organizations with physical assets. Combined with a proper maintenance plan, the software can reduce costs, improve asset life, and keep your equipment working when it’s most needed.
About the author:
Andrew Ly is a content editor at Better Buys, a B2B software review and comparison site. He writes reviews, articles and guides for the technology, business and human resources sectors.