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Deep Dive in Facility Maintenance



What is Facility Maintenance?


Facility Maintenance is about facilitating the people do their work without any interruption by keeping the facility operational.


Facility maintenance refers to the process of ensuring that buildings, equipment, and other physical assets are operating efficiently. Facility maintenance includes a wide range of activities, such as routine inspections, preventive maintenance, corrective maintenance, and repairs.


Effective facility maintenance is critical for organizations to ensure that their physical assets are operating at optimal levels, minimizing downtime and reducing costs. Facility maintenance may involve a range of professionals, including facilities managers, maintenance technicians, engineers, and other specialists.

Why do we need Facility Maintenance Software?


Facility maintenance software is a very important tool for businesses and organizations to manage and maintain their buildings, equipment, and assets. With so many options on the market, it will be challenging to choose the best one which addresses your requirements. In this article, we'll explore the top features and benefits of the best facility maintenance software to help you make an informed decision.


Comprehensive Asset Management


The best facility maintenance software should allow you to manage all of your assets from a single software. This includes tracking equipment maintenance schedules, work orders, inventory, and asset history. The software should also provide real-time updates on asset performance and maintenance status, allowing you to make informed decisions about repairs and replacements.


Automated Work Order Management


Automating work order management is another key feature of the best facility maintenance software. The software should allow you to create, assign, and track work orders from start to finish. It should also provide notifications when work orders are due and when they have been completed.


Mobile Capabilities


Mobile capabilities are essential for facility maintenance software. Technicians should be able to access the software from their mobile devices, enabling them to receive and complete work orders in the field. This feature also allows technicians to quickly update asset records and report on any issues they encounter during their work.


Preventative Maintenance Scheduling and Planning


Preventative Maintenance Scheduling is another critical feature of the best facility maintenance software. The software should allow you to create and manage preventive maintenance schedules for all of your assets. This feature ensures that maintenance is performed on time, reducing downtime and preventing costly repairs.


Analytics and Reporting


The best facility maintenance software should provide analytics and reporting features, allowing you to gain insights into asset performance, work order completion rates, and maintenance costs. This information can be used to optimize maintenance processes, reduce costs, and improve asset reliability.


Facility Management Solution Providers


Facility maintenance can be a complex and time-consuming process, requiring specialized knowledge and expertise. Hence many organizations choose to outsource their facility maintenance to third-party providers to ensure that their facilities and equipment are properly maintained over time.


According to a report by Markets and Markets, the outsourced facility management market in the United States was valued at USD 42.2 billion in 2020 and is expected to grow USD 76.3 billion by 2026 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 12.6% from 2021 to 2026.


Overall, outsourcing facility maintenance can be an effective way for organizations to ensure that their facilities and equipment are properly maintained, while freeing up resources to focus on their core business activities.


List of services offered by facilities management solution providers


Preventive Maintenance

Regular scheduled inspections and maintenance activities to keep equipment and facilities in good working condition and prevent breakdowns.


Corrective maintenance

Addressing issues or repairing equipment or facilities when something has gone wrong, such as a malfunctioning HVAC system or a broken window.


Reactive maintenance

Addressing unexpected issues or emergencies that require immediate attention, such as a power outage or a burst water pipe.


Predictive maintenance

Using advanced technologies and data analytics to predict when maintenance is needed before equipment or facilities break down.


Asset management

Tracking and managing physical assets, such as machinery, equipment, and buildings, to ensure they are maintained properly and used efficiently.


Energy management

Optimizing energy use and reducing energy consumption through the use of energy-efficient technologies and practices.


Cleaning and janitorial services

Routine cleaning and maintenance of facilities, such as offices, restrooms, and common areas.


Landscaping and groundskeeping

Maintaining outdoor spaces, such as lawns, gardens, and parking lots, to ensure they are safe and attractive.


Security services

Providing security measures, such as surveillance cameras, access control systems, and security personnel, to protect facilities and ensure the safety of employees and visitors.


Overall, facility maintenance services provided by facilities management providers are essential for ensuring that facilities are safe, functional, and operating efficiently. By providing these services, facilities management providers can help their clients to reduce costs, minimize downtime, and enhance the overall quality of their facilities.


List of Assets being maintained by the Facility Maintenance Team

  1. HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning) systems

  2. Electrical systems

  3. Plumbing systems

  4. Elevators and escalators

  5. Lighting systems

  6. Fire safety systems (fire alarms, sprinklers, extinguishers)

  7. Building automation systems

  8. Building envelopes (roofs, windows, doors)

  9. Landscaping and grounds maintenance

  10. Parking lots and garages

  11. Security systems (access control, cameras, alarms)

  12. Kitchen equipment and appliances

  13. Fitness equipment and facilities

  14. Computer networks and telecommunications systems

  15. Furniture and fixtures


Type of Facilities being maintained by the Facility Managers


Commercial Buildings

Office buildings, Shopping Centers, retail stores, and other commercial properties.


Industrial Buildings

Factories, Warehouses, Distribution centers, and other industrial facilities.


Educational Buildings

Schools, Universities, and other educational institutions.


Healthcare Buildings

Hospitals, Clinics, Nursing homes, and other healthcare facilities.


Residential Buildings

Apartment Buildings, Condominiums, and other residential properties.


Government Buildings

Courthouses, City Halls, and other government facilities.


Sports Facilities

Stadiums, Arenas, and other sports facilities.


Cultural and Entertainment Buildings

Museums, Theaters, Concert halls, and other cultural and entertainment facilities.


Role of a Facility Manager


The role of a Facility Manager involves overseeing and managing the maintenance and operation of facilities to ensure they are safe, functional, and meet the needs of the occupants. Some of the key responsibilities of a Facility Manager include:


Maintenance and Repairs


Ensuring the proper functioning and maintenance of all building systems and equipment, including HVAC, plumbing, electrical, and mechanical systems. This includes responding to emergency repairs and developing preventative maintenance plans.


Health and Safety


Ensuring the safety of building occupants and visitors by maintaining a safe and healthy environment, conducting regular inspections, and implementing safety policies and procedures.


Space Planning and Management


Developing space management plans, including the allocation and optimization of space utilization, and overseeing construction and renovation projects.


Budgeting and Financial Management


Developing and managing facility budgets, tracking expenses, and developing long-term financial plans for facility upgrades and improvements.


Vendor Management


Managing relationships with vendors and contractors, negotiating contracts, and ensuring that services are provided according to contract specifications and quality standards.


Environmental Sustainability


Developing and implementing sustainability plans and initiatives to reduce energy consumption, water usage, waste generation, and carbon emissions.


Communication and Stakeholder Management


Communicating with building occupants, management, and stakeholders to address concerns, manage expectations, and provide updates on facility operations and maintenance.


Certifications and Training Programs for Facility Managers


Certified Facility Manager (CFM)


This is an internationally recognized certification program offered by the International Facility Management Association (IFMA). It is designed to assess the knowledge and skills required for effective facility management.


Facility Management Professional (FMP)


This is another certification program offered by IFMA, which is designed to provide a comprehensive overview of facility management.


Facility Managers can gain a deeper understanding of the various aspects of facility management and learn how to effectively manage facilities to optimize their performance and meet the needs of their stakeholders


Certified Maintenance and Reliability Professional (CMRP)


This certification program is offered by the Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals (SMRP) and focuses on maintenance and reliability best practices.


CMRP program can help the Facility Managers to demonstrate their expertise in maintenance and reliability to their employers and clients..


LEED Certification


The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification program is offered by the U.S. Green Building Council and focuses on sustainability and environmental management practices in facility management.


OSHA Training


The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) offers a variety of training programs related to workplace safety, including courses in hazardous materials management, electrical safety, and fall protection.


Building Operator Certification (BOC)


This is a training and certification program offered by the Northwest Energy Efficiency Council, which focuses on energy efficiency and best practices in building operations.


How do Technologies help the Facility Management Providers track these activities?


1. Computerized maintenance management systems (CMMS)


A CMMS is a software application that helps facilities management providers to plan, schedule, and track maintenance activities. CMMS can provide a centralized database of equipment and facilities, track maintenance history, and generate work orders for maintenance technicians.


2. Mobile apps


Mobile apps can provide maintenance technicians with real-time access to work orders, equipment data, and maintenance history. Technicians can use these apps to update work orders, record maintenance activities, and track time and materials used.


3. Barcode and RFID tracking


Barcode and RFID technology can be used to track equipment and inventory, record maintenance activities, and ensure that the right equipment and parts are used for each maintenance task.


4. WhatsApp Business API

  1. Maintenance Requests:

Clients can submit maintenance requests through WhatsApp, which can be automatically routed to the appropriate technician or service team.

  1. Service Updates:

Facilities management providers can send real-time updates to clients about the status of their service requests or work orders, providing transparency and improving customer satisfaction.

  1. Appointment Reminders:

Facilities management providers can send automated appointment reminders to clients, reducing the likelihood of missed appointments and improving operational efficiency.

  1. Emergency Alerts:

In the event of an emergency, facilities management providers can use WhatsApp Business API to quickly notify clients and provide instructions or updates.

  1. Service Feedback:

Facilities management providers can solicit feedback from clients through WhatsApp, providing valuable insights into areas for improvement and enhancing the client experience.


5. Internet of Things


IoT (Internet of Things) can be a game-changer for facilities management providers. IoT devices, such as sensors and connected equipment, can provide real-time data on equipment and facility performance. This data can be used to predict when maintenance is needed, track maintenance history, and optimize maintenance schedules.


Here are some of the ways IoT can help facilities management providers:

  1. Remote Monitoring:

IoT sensors can be installed in various building systems, such as HVAC, lighting, and security, to monitor their performance remotely. Facilities management providers can use this data to identify issues before they become problems and take corrective action proactively.

  1. Predictive Maintenance:

IoT sensors can also be used to monitor equipment performance and predict when maintenance is required, reducing downtime and extending equipment life.

  1. Energy Management:

IoT sensors can help facilities management providers optimize energy usage by monitoring energy consumption and identifying inefficiencies. This can lead to significant energy savings and reduced carbon footprint.

  1. Occupancy Management:

IoT sensors can be used to monitor room occupancy and usage, providing insights into space utilization and helping facilities management providers optimize space allocation.

  1. Safety and Security:

IoT sensors can be used to monitor safety and security, such as detecting fire or intrusion, and alerting facilities management providers in real-time.

  1. Workflow Optimization:

IoT sensors can be used to track the movement of people and assets, providing insights into workflow optimization and helping facilities management providers improve operational efficiency.

  1. Data Analytics:

IoT generates a vast amount of data, which can be analyzed to identify patterns and insights that can help facilities management providers make better decisions.


6. Integration with Third-party Software (ERP)


Facilities management providers may integrate their customer's ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) system in order to improve their service delivery, streamline their operations, and enhance the customer experience.


ERP integration allows facilities management providers to access critical data about their customer's facilities, such as inventory levels, work order history, and asset tracking information. This data can be used to optimize maintenance schedules, streamline inventory management, and reduce downtime.


By integrating with their customer's ERP system, facilities management providers can also automate many routine tasks, such as creating work orders, scheduling maintenance, and tracking inventory. This can help to reduce errors, improve efficiency, and save time.


In addition, ERP integration can improve the customer experience by providing a more seamless and integrated service. Customers can access real-time data about their facilities, view work order history, and track service requests all in one place. This can help to improve customer satisfaction and increase loyalty.

Communication between the facilities management providers and their customers.


Automated reports


Many facilities management providers use computerized maintenance management systems (CMMS) or other software applications that can generate automated reports on maintenance activities. These reports can be customized to include specific data points, such as equipment downtime, maintenance costs, and work order completion rates. These reports can be sent to customers via email or made available on a web portal.


Regular meetings


Facilities management providers may hold regular meetings with their customers to discuss maintenance activities and provide status updates. These meetings can be conducted in person or via video conference, and may be scheduled on a weekly, monthly, or quarterly basis.


Dashboards and visualizations


Some facilities management providers use dashboards or visualizations to provide customers with real-time status updates on maintenance activities. These dashboards may include metrics such as equipment uptime, work order completion rates, and maintenance costs.


Ad-hoc reports


Facilities management providers may also provide ad-hoc reports to customers upon request. These reports may be customized to include specific data points or to address specific concerns or questions from the customer.


By effectively communicating maintenance status updates to their customers, facilities management providers can build trust, demonstrate value, and maintain long-term relationships.