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Planned preventative maintenance (PPMs) is a proactive maintenance strategy designed to prevent asset malfunctions before they occur, helping to minimise downtime, improve productivity and reduce costly repairs.

To help improve PPM, many companies utilise Computer Aided Facility Management (CAFM) systems. These systems provide a range of benefits, such as reducing call-out frequencies, ensuring compliance with regulatory requirements, automating data analysis to evaluate performance, integrating with mobile devices to increase efficiency, and lowering the overall cost of maintenance activities.

1. Reduce Call-out Frequency With Asset Grouping

Asset grouping is a valuable tool that can help facility managers improve their PPM programme. Instead of organising asset maintenance individually, assets can be divided into groups with those that share similar characteristics or maintenance requirements. For example, in a hospital, all the ventilation systems can be merged into an asset group. Thereafter, maintenance personnel would only require a single visit to carry out all the relevant checks and inspections for this group. This approach not only saves time and resources but also helps in improving overall efficiency.

In addition, implementing asset grouping becomes even more effective when coupled with a CAFM solution. With a CAFM solution, facility managers can quickly and automatically create asset groups, assign them to maintenance schedules, and track maintenance activities. Asset grouping ensures a proactive attitude to maintenance, ensuring the whole group is inspected and reduces the likelihood of asset failure and downtime.

2. Integration With SFG20 to Ensure Compliance

Integrating a CAFM system with SFG20 can significantly enhance facility managers’ ability to develop a structured and comprehensive framework for PPM. SFG20, created in 1990 by the Building Engineering Services Association (BESA), is an industry standard solution that provides over 1,200 schedules to oversee more than 70 equipment types. SFG20 is designed with a colour-coding system to prioritise tasks and optimise maintenance:

  • Red – statutory / legal (to ensure legal compliance)
  • Pink – mandatory / business critical (to ensure sector / organisation compliance)
  • Amber – optimal (function critical and industry best practice)
  • Green – discretionary (non-critical maintenance).

A constantly updated, informative, yet customisable, system helps the facility manager stay within compliance laws and streamline all necessary activities. This minimises the risk of regulatory violations, reduces the potential for fines or penalties, and ensures that the organisation is operating in a safe and compliant manner.

3. Automated Data Analysis to Evaluate Performance

To continuously improve PPM, it is vital to establish key performance indicators (KPIs) that identify, monitor and evaluate maintenance performance through data. This includes tracking maintenance metrics, such as equipment performance and downtime, maintenance history and costs, and maintenance completion or failure rates. Accurate data and information allows high-risk assets or recurring issues to be identified,  encouraging a more effective allocation of resources and data based decision making. Going by our previous example, if one ventilator has a high rate of failure and requires more maintenance, a facilities manager should notice this trend and ensure it is scheduled for frequent maintenance, or indeed consider replacing the asset. This will prevent asset downtime from reactive maintenance and the costly repairs associated with it. A CAFM solution, such as QFM, implements an automated tracking system to ensure any worrying trends can be rectified.

4. Mobile Integration for Increased Efficiency

Mobile technology should also be seen as a vital tool to improve PPM. Through the use of mobile devices, such as smartphones or tablets, maintenance personnel can perform tasks with greater efficiency and accuracy. Specifically, it allows them to carry out tasks on-the-go without the need to return and log information in a centralised location.

Operatives have accurate, real-time data, including information on relevant assets, compliance requirements and work orders at their fingertips. With access to this critical information, personnel can make informed decisions about their maintenance activities and prioritise their tasks accordingly. This reduces the need for manual data entry, which can be time-consuming and prone to human errors.

With a CAFM solution that has an integrated mobile app, workers can update the system with their completed tasks in real-time and flag any issues from anywhere.

5. Alleviate Budgeting Pressure

CAFM software is a first-class solution to improving PPMs, especially when it comes to cost savings. An automated maintenance schedule, driven by data insight aids with asset lifecycle management. Proactive PPM regimes reduce the chance of asset downtime, breakdowns and expensive replacements, which can be a significant burden to any business. The software provides valuable insight to equipment performance and is able to predict asset failure, which further prevents unforeseen costs.

In addition to this, CAFM software has the ability to schedule maintenance at convenient times, with minimal disruption to business operations. For example, work taking place at a university would be held outside of teaching hours. As well as this, PPM scheduling can be co-ordinated with reactive requests to increase efficiency and lower costs, as the operative will only be required to make one trip. These are some of the many ways that a CAFM solution can help to improve planned preventative maintenance.

For more information about how Service Works International can support you with more efficient planned preventative maintenance, read about our CAFM system, QFM.

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