What is a CMMS?
A Computerised Maintenance Management System initially centralised all the data (human, material, stocks, purchases, etc.) relating to maintenance. But the software actually has a broader function: by coordinating, analysing, comparing and automating, a CMMS facilitates maintenance operations like never before. Thanks to reliable data and effective communication with companies’ entire information systems, a CMMS provides key information for making decisions. But how does a CMMS work and what are its essential features?
The eight key features of a CMMS
Asset management is essential to provide a comprehensive and documented listing of machines and assets. It offers many possibilities: inventory, tree, equipment categorisation according to the company’s specific nomenclature and the precise location of each item. In addition to simple identification, the CMMS also has comprehensive asset documentation: purchase date, past work on the asset, technical documentation and plans.
Work management is an essential aspect of a CMMS.
In maintenance, we distinguish between preventive and curative work, generally in response to a breakdown. Work is first of all the description of what needs to be done: description of the work, instructions and parts to change.
Work is also the core maintenance costs, with the spare parts and internal or external labour costs.
Relying on KPIs, the CMMS enables you to analyse your maintenance costs precisely, as well as to analyse the volumes and frequency of breakdowns and work, and provides you with information to adapt your maintenance.
The key features of the CMMS include the schedule. The visual schedule shows the work and facilitates organisation. The teams’ workload schedule enables you to anticipate absences and overloads to distribute the work optimally between technicians within the time frame. The different CMMS schedules improve organisation and contribute to quality coordination for the maintenance department. And if your schedule is full, you can regularly plan work that can be rescheduled to respond to unforeseen emergencies.
Associated with planning, the management of resources provides a comprehensive overview of the teams and guides their management. Knowing the staff available and qualified for work is an incredible time saving! Training, authorisations, past work, presence or absence are all components that are easy to view with the CMMS tool. The information is more easily sent to technicians and performance is analysed. This resource management also includes service providers and subcontractors, whose actions can be incorporated and coordinated.
Spare part stock and purchasing management
Spare part stocks are a crucial component of maintenance: these must be at their right level to keep assets operational without getting lost in stock management. The dedicated CMMS module monitors part entries and withdrawals and restock points, manages suppliers and analyses consumption to guide future purchases. Purchase requests are easy to submit, document and track. Finally, the CMMS modules automatically centralise and compare the purchasing conditions to accelerate decision-making and generate purchasing economies.
Analysis and reporting
Present in all CMMS tools at more or less advanced levels, the analysis feature provides significant support, both for field work and strategic decision-making. Established by concrete KPIs (MTBF, MTTR, asset availability and failure rate, costs, etc.), the analysis enables you to assess performance and share information precisely. From purchase management to the analysis of sources of failure and technician performance, this module contributes to continuous improvement at all levels.
Mobility is an integral part of maintenance. One of the main features of CMMS is therefore a comprehensive and intuitive application. Thanks to this application, technicians can immediately access maintenance data from work sites, with or without an internet connection. Thanks to simplified input on all mobile devices, maintenance can be monitored (meter readings, work, part entries or withdrawals, viewing inventories, etc.) and information can fed back in real time to the CMMS.
API and web services for a simple interface with the information system
The CMMS connectors are essential for smooth communication with the business software in place. ERP, MES, schedule and supervision software: the CMMS must interface with each of them, so that reliable and up-to-date information always circulates on it. There are multiple tools in this connectivity, with web services and APIs that enable you to put in place systematic and systemic communication between applications. The CMMS is also integrated in the existing IS and constantly feeds into it.
The choice of a new generation CMMS
By choosing a new generation CMMS, you release your maintenance data from the silos they have been in until now. Thanks to the key features of the CMMS listed here, the DIMO Maint solution centralises the key aspects of maintenance and makes the information shared by employees reliable. At the same time, the CMMS enables smooth and coherent circulation of data to all the business lines, so that it can be part of a continuous chain, without interruption, and the teams’ productivity can be sustainably improved.