“Our buildings were falling down faster than we could fix them,” said Ed Williams, Facility Maintenance Supervisor for the thirteen locations of the YMCA of Metro Detroit. “We didn’t have complete facility maps or maintenance records. Our purchase orders were stored in notebooks. When maintenance staff left, we didn’t know what units needed to be fixed and often had no idea where to find those units in the first place.”
The results were predictable – cold swimming areas, overheated gymnasiums, dissatisfied members, and frustrated employees. The search for a solution took Ed and his colleagues in two directions.
First, they considered completely outsourcing all facility maintenance functions. Although outsourcing would eliminate having to deal with maintenance issues directly, the cost was too high to justify the benefit.
Next, they investigated computerized maintenance management systems. They agreed that any system selected must meet three criteria: it must be cost-effective; it must be easy to use, even for staff members without computer skills; and it must be able to tie into the existing computer network, including the accounts payable and receivable systems.
After researching several systems, they discovered one that met all three requirements: the MaintiMizer™ from Ashcom Technologies of Ann Arbor, MI.
The MaintiMizer™ allows YMCA staff members to enter a maintenance work order directly and immediately into the system. At the beginning of their shifts and throughout the day, maintenance personnel log on to the system and retrieve work orders prioritized by importance. If a new part is needed, the system generates a purchase order that is forwarded electronically to a supervisor for immediate approval. Once the work is completed, maintenance personnel log back on to update the maintenance log for that unit.
The MaintiMizer™ also stores all related maintenance management information, including facility maps and equipment locations, preventive maintenance schedules, vendor lists, and parts lists.
“Now,” says Ed Williams, “purchase orders that used to take a week to be approved are resolved in a matter of minutes. We’ve also seen measurable cost savings by batch ordering parts for multiple facilities – recently we saved $200 on a single air filter order.”
Over time, Ed and his colleagues expect to enjoy cost benefits from improved equipment performance and longer equipment life as a result of following a regular preventive maintenance schedule. They also expect a decrease in maintenance staff turnover and the associated costs of hiring and training. The benefits resulting from satisfied members and staff are more difficult to measure, but are nonetheless there.
Says Ed Williams, “Using the MaintiMizer™ system has worked out well for everyone.”
Want to learn more about how MaintiMizer™ can help your facility? Call us today at 800-366-0793. We look forward to hearing from you!