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Mobility in Maintenance Management - essential or optional?
The endless technological evolution in which we live has been responsible for the development of several innovative solutions and, in the maintenance area, mobile applications deserve a special attention.
Smartphones and tablets are, without a doubt, one of the most used technologies worldwide. Nowadays, almost everyone has a smartphone in their hands that is not only used for a personal purpose, but also as a work tool.
A maintenance team that has already adopted a maintenance management mobile application to carry out their daily tasks, can hardly imagine themselves without this technology.
Let's show you some benefits of the maintenance management using a mobile application and discover if this technology is essential or just an option to be considered for your company.
Essential or Optional?
The mobile application is (still) not a replacement for the web version of your maintenance management system (CMMS), but, over the years, it is gaining more and more followers within the maintenance areas, because it is an efficient response to the maintenance operations work where you are. With the increasing need to respond to any type of work, maintenance professionals end up spending more time in the field and the mobile application gives them the opportunity to access all the important information in real-time, where they are. This means that Work Orders (WO) can be created and reported without returning to the office with information on a paper and use a laptop to insert the data into a centralized system. The maintenance management app has enough power to transform in a positive way all the essential tasks of the day-to-day maintenance department and bring with it two crucial benefits: greater flexibility and time-efficiency.
Problems related with stress, with lack of communication between the team and with the downtime of the assets, are the result of a dangerous cycle that happens when technicians do not have the right tools to carry out their work effectively. With the help of a mobile app, it can improve and optimize the maintenance management of any company.
How do mobile applications improve maintenance management to a more efficient level?
We present you four examples of daily routine tasks of the Maintenance Department that benefit significantly with mobility:
1. Inventory of assets on the go
With the maintenance equipment constantly in motion, it is important to give access to inventory mechanisms in any place. The registration of new assets and locations is a constant within any company and, with the use of mobile tools, maintenance technicians can insert information about assets, such as location, asset details, photographs, security documents, and user manuals. With the use of wireless technologies such as RFID and NFC, the cataloging and recognition of equipment are done in a fast and safe way, helping the future maintenance management processes to be completed in an easy and fast way.
2. Access to scheduled preventive maintenance plans
When the preventive maintenance operations are previously planned, technicians start the working day knowing exactly what they have to do. With the information available from a mobile device, makes it possible for the maintenance team to have access to the information while they are moving through the facilities. In addition, technicians can receive real-time notifications about emergencies or tasks that were not previously planned.
3. Tracking of work orders and assets
When the maintenance team does not have a mobile CMMS as a work tool, technicians need to access a computer to access and follow the Work Orders (WO). This means that the maintenance team can only see this information in the office and also that it needs to go through the use of paper to write details of the WO that, later, has to pass again into the system.
With a maintenance management mobile app, technicians can insert all the essential information at the time it is collected, saving, therefore, the use of paper and time waste. The quick report on the work orders status, time spend, material consumption and other costs related to Work Orders, it’s information that can be accessible by all the maintenance team.
In addition, technicians can simply scan RFID or NFC tags of an equipment with the smartphone or tablet and access important information such as the instruction manuals and intervention history. That way, all the information is centralized in the system and accessible in real time, from anywhere.
4. The stock of spare parts
Not having control over the stock of spare parts in the warehouse can be a burden for the maintenance department. If there is a breakdown and there are not enough spare parts for the repair, it is necessary to contact the supplier and wait for the parts to be delivered, causing a halt in the operations.
The mobile application avoids these situations since the maintenance technicians can continuously update the stock from a smartphone or tablet, where they are.
If maintenance operations are scheduled, technicians can verify if there are enough spare parts in stock and, if not, they can order them immediately through the mobile app. On the other hand, in the event of a sudden failure where the last part is used, the technician can request it immediately to the warehouse to replace the stock. We conclude, then, that the maintenance team can adopt a totally proactive approach, which prevents a great amount of stress in the future.
Finally, we perceive that a maintenance management reinforced with mobile applications helps to improve all the maintenance operations and reduce assets downtime or corrective maintenance processes. The excess of work, the lack of spare parts available in the warehouse, and the lack of communication, these are problems that delay the daily work of the entire maintenance department. Obviously, if the right tools are provided, these problems should not happen. The innovative functionalities and the great benefits of a mobile maintenance management application make this technology essential and not just optional for an effective maintenance management of companies.