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    Eleven essentials for maintenance management software.

    What should your CMMS platform do for you?

    If you’re looking for a new maintenance management platform, this quick checklist can help you to whittle down the contenders to a manageable shortlist.

    These are the features you should be looking for as a minimum:

    1. Job tickets are associated with the specific asset concerned, which means that they’re also linked to that asset’s history, associated equipment, geo-location and documentation (see item 6). For example, a request to fix a broken pump nozzle will be associated to the nozzle itself, the pump it belongs to, site location and all the stored information that relates to it.
    2. Once the ticket is raised, it’s automatically assigned to the relevant contractor or internal engineer, and the job is immediately sent via SMS, email or mobile app. This rapid allocation means that issues can be resolved sooner, getting revenue-generating and service assets back up and running as swiftly as possible.
    3. Each new ticket is automatically given the correct SLA, according to your pre-defined criteria (based on business requirements, repair types, asset types, when the job is created, location and so on). Accurate SLAs are essential for driving compliance, as well as protecting your customer experience and revenue generation.
    4. Workflows (the way the system progresses each stage of the job, from initial report to final completion) should be fully configurable to suit any changes to your business. You will have multiple workflows to cover all the different assets and environments in your business: from forecourts to freezers.
    5. Your system must be able to provide a full audit trail for each job, according to its workflow, including who has viewed and or updated the ticket, when they updated it and what actions they took.
    6. Your system must be able to store permits, manuals, certificates, insurance documents, contracts, warranties and images, and associate them with each relevant asset, task, site and supplier. This enables you readily access any relevant information – from what a piece of equipment looks like to who originally installed it. This capability also enables you to run intelligent reports that enable you to benchmark performance, compare costs and identify opportunities for efficiency.
    7. A mobile app is an essential these days, especially when contractors work across multiple sites. This should enable them to access, download and progress any task or ticket that has been allocated to them, speeding up response times and improving accuracy.
    8. Enabling contractors to raise quotations and invoices through the system speeds up the approval and payment process. The relevant cost centre managers can approve as part of the workflow, and if your maintenance management platform can link directly with your finance software, so much the better. Again, integrating everything into your platform supports management and reporting, giving you better insight for effective cost control.
    9. As well as being available via mobile app, your chosen platform needs to responsive – appearing clearly on any desktop or mobile device – and be compatible with popular browsers.
    10. The ability to log security incidents, accidents, burglaries, drive-offs or any specific events that may be particular to the site/location.
    11. The system needs to function using the right language and currency for your location. If your company operates in more than one country, it will need to be multi-lingual and multi-currency. You may also operate multiple brands, or divide your business into distinct operational units (such as fuel and non-fuel retail). In all cases, your platform much be able to report across all aspects of your business, cutting or consolidating the data to deliver reports and dashboards that meet your needs.

    A final thought – whichever system you choose, it needs to be user-friendly. On-site staff are often under pressure and may not be native language speakers, so the interface needs to be clear and easy to navigate, and the instructions straightforward and quick to follow.

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