Why do we keep hearing more businesses are making the strategic move to implementing maintenance management software? In the past maintenance software solutions were geared toward businesses in manufacturing and those that had large industrial equipment as part of their production processes. Today, droves of organizations in almost every industry realize the cost saving benefits maintenance management software affords businesses.
Maintenance management software streamlines maintenance processes, making them more efficient and effective. It provides a centralized platform for managing all maintenance activities, from scheduling preventive maintenance to tracking work orders and managing inventory. By automating many of these processes, maintenance management software can reduce the need for manual intervention and ensure that maintenance tasks are completed on time. This not only saves time and money but also reduces the risk of equipment failure and unplanned downtime. More importantly, it makes maintenance management business as usual.
Maintenance management software includes a variety of features such as work order management, preventative maintenance scheduling, asset and inventory management, and robust data analytics tools. Some solutions also include features for running routine inspections, purchasing assets and materials and 3rd party vendor management. CMMS software systems have come a long way over the years and users are driving providers to improve solutions through ongoing research and development. Benefits of using maintenance management software include improved equipment uptime, increased efficiency and productivity, increased asset utilization, reduced maintenance costs, and improved compliance with regulatory and safety standards.
While the above are obvious reasons why businesses invest in maintenance management software, there are also some less obvious, strategic reasons. The Iceberg principle helps visualize how this plays out. This article focuses on three strategic reasons. Awareness and understanding of these strategic reasons gives context to plant managers, maintenance managers, technicians and other maintenance professionals helping them to better understand the value maintenance management software brings, make better use of their existing software or decide on which solution makes the most sense for their organization.
1. The Digital Transformation Imperative
Digital transformation used to be a buzzword. COVID-19, however, changed everything and made digital transformation a requirement, not just something business managers consider.
Gartner defines digital transformation as “The process of leveraging emerging technology and supporting skills to build a robust new business model.” This ultimately boils down to leveraging digital technologies to:
Internally - optimize operations, and
Externally - improve and create great customer experiences.
The future is looking bright with rapid growth. Market research continues to project high growth rates for the digital transformation market. In 2022, the market size for digital transformation was estimated to be $731.13 billion and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 26.7% until 2030. Some of the results have been mixed, but at the end of the day, it’s clear that this market is growing rapidly and businesses are acting. Digital transformation has become central to boardroom conversations. Long-term strategic projects that businesses take up, will leverage digital transformation to drive and amplify their impact. It is in this context that operations-heavy businesses implement maintenance management software.
Peter Drucker famously said, “Culture eats strategy for breakfast.” The quote is self-explanatory. It emphasizes that when businesses are struggling and existing strategy and processes are not yielding positive results, culture matters most and has the biggest impact on turning things around. Building a strong company culture takes time, nurturing and focus. Strong company cultures don’t grow overnight and they take people and planning to develop. Maintenance management software helps build culture because it shows that executives and managers value accountability, reliability, responsiveness, quality, safety and more.
3. Grow Shareholder Value
Markets are supreme. Executive boards and CEOs are aware of this harsh reality. They favor initiatives that;
generate productivity gains,
reduce costs and increase profits,
minimize risks and align with corporate governance.
All the above translate into improved market performance driving shareholder value and stakeholder satisfaction. A maintenance management system delivers on the above.
A Deloitte study on “Predictive Maintenance and Smart Manufacturing” done a few years ago, claimed that unplanned downtime is costing industrial manufacturers an estimated $50 billion each year. The same research also highlighted that poor maintenance strategies can reduce a plant’s overall productive capacity by 5% to 20%.
By streamlining maintenance processes and improving asset management practices, maintenance management software can help businesses increase their productivity and profitability.
With maintenance management software, businesses can reduce downtime, optimize maintenance schedules, and improve the reliability of their assets. By reducing downtime, businesses can increase production and revenue, while also reducing the costs associated with unplanned downtime. Additionally, by improving asset reliability, businesses can reduce maintenance costs and extend the life of their equipment, further increasing profitability.
Keep it in check, regularly evaluate
Maintenance managers and technicians are at the frontlines when it comes to managing a business’s maintenance operations. With time, maintenance teams evolve and adopt certain ways of doing things. They get comfortable with current processes, especially if things seem to be going well. Markets react quickly to economic change and maintenance teams should be cautious. Maintenance professionals should always be driving excellence and evaluating processes and looking for ways to improve. Stay current with existing and new technologies and always challenge the team to find ways to optimize processes and performance. Maintenance management software is a great tool for businesses because it's instrumental in providing data and insights on how maintenance departments are performing.
David has been covering topics related to maintenance, asset and facilities management for over a decade. He is passionate about researching and sharing content that has a positive impact on maintenance and facilities professionals.