Ever wished your maintenance management software was more adaptable? Or that it was offline-capable or had a convenient mobile app?
Maybe you want a solution that includes a task management system or that gives you greater control over which fields make up your maintenance report forms or service forms. Perhaps you just want something more modern.
In any case, you’ll find what you’re looking for in this blog post. Let’s get into it.
The Problem With Traditional Maintenance Management Software
Firstly, it’s important that we make a clear distinction here. Times have changed, and the maintenance management system niche has been around for a while – otherwise known as an MMS. A paper-based process is no longer considered traditional – it’s plain rudimentary.
So if you’re still stuck on paper, almost any newer software will aid your efficiency. That said, don’t just close your eyes and throw a dart to choose. You’ll need to be diligent to ensure you get the best deal. This blog post will help with that.
The main problem with traditional (or older) systems is that they’re rigid. You get a done-for-you system, and that’s great, but you have to adapt your process to fit the software.
When you need to capture information beyond what the system is capable of, it’s back to the old ‘trusty’ paper. That means the additional admin for data capture and filing.
This makes a custom system sound like a no-brainer, but there are drawbacks on both sides.
The Problem With Adaptable Maintenance Management Software
It sounds great on paper – you can have a system where you control everything. Your workflows, the information you gather, the reports you send, and to whom. Sound like a maintenance manager’s dream, right?
Well, then you get there and realise that you have to set everything up. Need a new report form? You need to get stuck in and build one. Need a new reporting format? It’s on you.
The core benefit is, of course, better efficiency once everything’s set up. You won’t need a permanent data capture employee on site, and you’ll be able to run more of your enterprise digitally (and securely).
It’s important to weigh the pros and cons of each solution before making that final decision.
Your MMS And Your Maintenance Model
Small things can sometimes be overlooked in the heat of maintenance and planning. During your search for a decent MMS, don’t overlook this core requirement: does your MMS cater to your style of maintenance?
Check and make sure that your MMS isn’t subscribed to a particular model. If you’re on a run-to-fail (RTF) model, you may not need 11 different preventative checklists. What you will need is a breakdown or failure form.
The same is true of each of the four popular models – but even then, each organisation has their own idea of these models. Perhaps you run a combination of a few models?
You’ll have to ensure that your system can adapt to your needs on the fly.
Mobile Is The Future Of Maintenance
You can’t expect your maintenance team to run around the site with full-sized laptops to ‘go digital.’ It’s not practical. You also need to reduce paper, which is not efficient enough for modern workplaces. It’s clear that mobile devices have a place in the future of maintenance. Yet you’ll have to ensure you don’t get a slow, clunky mobile app that’s a glorified word processor.
It’s a good idea to look for a native mobile app. This simply means the app was developed specifically for the platform it’s being used on (Android & iOS). A native app allows you to fully utilise the device’s capabilities.
This means you can use GPS, NFC tags, and more without the device slowing down too much.
So instead of long paragraphs of text and manual time entry, your employees could simply snap a photo. The device can do the rest for you and can even pull text from your images (such as serial numbers).
What we’re saying is if your MMS doesn’t offer a native mobile app, don’t bother.
Reduce Your Admin As Much As Possible
Paper is notoriously admin-heavy. Just about any MMS will do a better job in that department. However, some software solutions will require admin nonetheless.
In Appenate’s case, learning the platform can seem like a challenge at first. However, once you get the hang of it, creating custom forms and setting up powerful connectors only takes a few minutes.
You may need to store your reports pulled from the platform somewhere securely, but all the information is safeguarded on the cloud for easy access.
Manual data capture will be a thing of the past – and this is what we should strive for when selecting a new MMS. You’ll also save costs on printing and storing paper documents. All wins.
Testing Tips From Our CEO
When testing a potential solution, focus on solving your core problem first. Ideally, this is a specific issue that you’ll benefit greatly from solving.
For example, your maintenance team may currently spend more time sorting out their paperwork than actually working on-site. In this case, you’ll work out which is the most admin-heavy paper form they’re currently using and digitise it.
Once that’s working and all the kinks have been ironed out, you can monitor the benefits and expand from there.
This means you don’t have to re-invent your entire system right away. This could cause major roadblocks and halt your digital transformation before it even starts. Keep it small, keep it simple, and take it step by step.
To aid you in your quest, we’ve already built out a maintenance report form you can grab and adapt to your needs quickly. This can speed up your testing process with us to determine whether we fit your digital stack.
Simply sign up for a free account, head to ‘examples catalogue’ and search for ‘maintenance form’ – install, adapt, and use in the field. 😁
Maintenance Is Tough: Don’t Hamstring Yourself
We aren’t going to pretend that we’re maintenance experts. I worked in the industry years ago, and all I can say is that I have the greatest empathy for you.
Theory is one thing, but being in the thick of things and balancing budgets with machine availability and expectations from the CEO or board is enough to drive anyone to the brink of insanity. Try to reduce that load by ditching legacy systems that no longer serve you.
To sign up for free and give Appenate a shot (along with complimentary training for life), click here.