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5 Top Tips on How to Build and Maintain a Fit-For-Purpose CMMS

31 January 2019 by Add Energy

A fit-for-purpose Computerized Maintenance Management System, or a CMMS, has the potential to bring a multitude of benefits to your business:

  •  It can reduce maintenance costs, as it can enable you to turn a reactive maintenance culture into a planned and proactive culture
  • It can help you mitigate risk by utilizing intelligent reporting modules
  • And it can improve productivity of both the maintenance team and your facility as a whole

Not only will a CMMS help to streamline processes and improve equipment uptime, but it has been proven that typically, in less than one year, the investment in a CMMS is recovered, with a 5-15% reduction in maintenance costs.

However, it is important to note that a CMMS can only achieve such benefits if the data within it is reliable and has been applied correctly. To shed some light on how this can be achieved, we asked some of Add Energy’s consultants to share tips on how to build and maintain a quality and fit for purpose CMMS.

1. Review and understand current business processes that will drive and influence the CMMS

"You must ensure the CMMS will cater for what the business processes and procedures currently ask for. You should agree the CMMS process and workflows up front, and ensure they will work for your organization’s structure. 

"Ensuring the CMMS can capture the required data to support the business needs currently and in the future is also vitally important. As is robustly documenting the CMMS build throughout -  capturing changes and deviations is key."

2. Create a ‘data standard’ for how information is to be captured within the CMMS

"The objective of this ‘standard document’ is to define each field in the CMMS and set a minimum criteria for its population. It acts as the blueprint or roadmap for the development of the asset register and will allow all future additions/modifications to the facility to be delivered to the minimum standard, keeping consistency of the evolving asset register data.

"Having consistent and accurate data will enable better maintenance management, and expedite the decision making process - all of which will result in the right business decisions being made going forward."

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3. Do not neglect the importance of high quality data, when to collect it and who from

"Poor or missing data will result in costly post-project go-live maintenance related issues, including unplanned downtime costs, production loss and safety related risks.

"If the data is not collected properly during the project phase, prepare for significantly higher costs to collect it during operation.

"Remember, the vendors or suppliers are the best placed people to collect data from, but are often poor at complying with information management related deliverables.

"Apply a zero tolerance approach to vendors trying to avoid their contractual obligations and ensure all stakeholders understand the importance of high quality data and information management."

4. Know your equipment, and ensure changes are captured in the CMMS

"A CMMS build is based on a digital representation of a physical site. In order to have a complete and accurate maintenance system, keep all your documentation and drawings up to date.

"Have you decommissioned or removed a piece of equipment? You could end up maintaining it as you would operating equipment if the documents are not updated.

"If you bought new equipment from a vendor, ask yourself: “Have they provided me with all the information I need to know in 5 years’ time, or will I have to ask them again?”

"If you do not know your equipment, you could have something you are not maintaining that is causing other equipment you do know about to fail."

5. Get senior management buy-in

"Senior management need a clear understanding of a CMMS and the types of initial and ongoing resources that must be committed to the project, i.e. acquisition costs, training costs, etc.

"Sponsorship and ownership at the most senior level will engender ownership for the project at other levels in the organization.

"Without senior management commitment you will struggle to engage other management levels who are required for implementation. They will remain focused on the day-to-day business."

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