CMMS is an essential IT tool for maintenance professionals, particularly in industry but also in other sectors such as facility management or vehicle fleet management. It facilitates the work of maintenance teams, helps reduce costs and increase productivity, and helps develop a preventive maintenance strategy.
CMMS has undergone significant evolution in recent years. The old expensive and difficult to use software has been replaced by much less expensive and very easy to use applications, which encourages more and more companies of all sizes to adopt a CMMS to improve the follow-up and organization of their maintenance.
To help you understand what a good CMMS solution can do for you and help you choose, we answer your questions below.
- what is a CMMS?
- what are the features of a CMMS?
- why implement a CMMS?
- who uses CMMS?
- which are the benefits of a CMMS?
- is it possible to use Excel as a free CMMS
- how to choose a good CMMS?
- how to use a next gen CMMS?
The term CMMS refers to a maintenance software known as Computerized Maintenance Management System. More generally, it is an IT solution that helps companies’ maintenance departments to monitor, organize and analyze their maintenance interventions and strategies.
This maintenance management method is primarily intended for industry but also for all sectors of activity that have equipment to maintain (real estate, vehicle fleets, sports equipment, etc.).
What are the features of a CMMS?
The most common features of a CMMS are the following:
- management of machines and equipment (inventory, location, etc.)
- management of maintenance interventions (intervention reports)
- management of intervention requests
- management of spare parts stocks
- management of the maintenance personnel schedule
- management of maintenance-related costs (labor, spare parts, etc.)
- Monitoring of key performance indicators, or KPIs (MTTR, Pareto, MTBF, etc.).
Why implement a CMMS software?
A CMMS software has many advantages for the industrial sector but also for other sectors of activity. It allows:
- to have a complete and up-to-date inventory of the equipment to be maintained;
- to have an exhaustive follow-up of the maintenance interventions carried out, and thus to have a traceability and costs related to these operations;
- centralize all documents related to the equipment, whether technical, administrative or financial;
- define and implement preventive maintenance actions to be carried out on machines and equipment (cleaning, lubrication, checks, regulatory controls, etc.)
- manage spare parts stocks and provide alerts for replenishment according to defined thresholds;
- coordinate the work of all maintenance personnel, both internal and external (subcontractors, manufacturers, etc.)
- measure, analyze and optimize maintenance activities: work hours, costs and productivity gains, availability, reliability and equipment life span…
- collect and process requests from production operators (troubleshooting, improvements, etc.);
- make better decisions regarding maintenance (equipment replacement, choice of suppliers, etc.).
Who uses CMMS?
The use of a CMMS software can involve a number of people more or less important according to the use which is made of it:
- maintenance technicians are the first to be concerned: they use it to know their schedule, what tasks they have to perform, enter their intervention reports, etc. ;
- service providers who intervene regularly or occasionally on the equipment;
- maintenance managers use it to schedule teams, assign tasks to different technicians, analyze and improve maintenance processes, etc;
- production teams make intervention requests in the software;
- spare parts and purchasing departments can follow the evolution of stocks in the software and make the necessary purchases;
- plant or factory managers can track maintenance-related costs and productivity gains.
What are the advantages of a CMMS?
A maintenance management software not only facilitates the work of the teams but also:
- to develop the share of preventive maintenance in the company, before limiting the number of breakdowns and production stops;
- improve the safety of maintenance technicians, for example through mandatory checklists to be followed for sensitive interventions;
- improve the fluidity of spare parts inventory management and avoid stock shortages;
- promote good communication between the different departments of the company (maintenance, production, purchasing, accounting, etc.);
- analyze and optimize maintenance processes to make them simpler and more efficient, by implementing APIs to automate service requests or by tracking key maintenance indicators.
The use of a CMMS is therefore beneficial to both the safety of maintenance teams and the productivity of the company.
Can we use Excel as a free CMMS?
Many plants use the Excel spreadsheet to track their maintenance interventions, which allows them to benefit from a kind of free CMMS software.
The main advantage of using Excel to manage maintenance is that companies already have this software and therefore do not have to spend more money on a specific solution. Moreover, keeping track of maintenance interventions in the spreadsheet is more reliable than doing it on paper documents. Finally, it is a very flexible solution that allows for easy customization of the data categories to be filled in.
On the other hand, Excel also has many drawbacks: data entry can be laborious, data analysis is complicated, information sharing is limited and there is no easy-to-use mobile version of this software. This is why more and more companies now prefer to choose a solution specifically designed for maintenance.
How to choose a CMMS
Choosing the right software for your business may seem very complicated, but by studying certain criteria in particular, your choice will be easier.
Choose an easy-to-use CMMS
While some companies operating in very specific sectors may need a highly specialized CMMS, most are better off with a multi-purpose solution, which will be easy for maintenance teams and all other users to adopt.
A mobile application
Choosing a CMMS with a mobile version is a real advantage: technicians can access at any time the information they need to carry out their interventions (safety checklists or technical documents, for example) but also enter their intervention reports as soon as they have finished a task. This avoids a lot of time and information loss, and it would be a shame to deprive yourself of this advantage.
Mobility Work CMMS includes a mobile application
The importance of computer security
As the data entered in the maintenance management software can be sensitive, it is important to ensure that the solution you choose provides serious guarantees in this area. If you choose a software that works in SaaS (which is the case of the most efficient ones), it must provide very serious guarantees of security and reliability, in order to be always available and efficient and to guarantee the integrity of your data. The most recognized hosting providers are AWS (Amazon Web Service) and Google. In addition, ISO 27001 certification is a guarantee of seriousness for information management.
The quality of customer service
As simple as it may be, the implementation and use of a CMMS often implies calling on the editor’s customer service or support. It is therefore strongly recommended to ask the latter for precise data on the reactivity and efficiency of its user support service.
How to use the Mobility Work CMMS ?
Mobility Work’s next-gen CMMS was created based on a simple principle: to be fully effective, a maintenance management software must be used by all stakeholders and for all maintenance activities. Therefore, it must be easy to use and adapted to the tasks of those who use it.
The use of the CMMS Mobility Work is thus very simple. This solution uses common life application codes so that it is very quick to learn. Moreover, it is easily configurable and customizable in order to adapt to the needs and preferences of all maintenance professionals.
To start using it and get a free 7-day trial, simply visit the website or download the mobile app from Google Play or the AppStore. Then, equipment records can be quickly created and maintenance tasks and activities can be associated with these equipments. The follow-up of maintenance interventions is then already in place.