What state is your CMMS in?

Have you ever wondered why several things seem to stay a problem although you’ve changed Computerized Maintenance Management System (CMMS) vendors or versions over the years? Most of the time, these issues are due to administration and implementation errors rather than the selection of CMMS.



One way to correct these problems is to identify and prioritize the problems, establish the root causes, and justify the cost of an improvement plan. The responsibility to audit asset management practices lies with senior management. This should be done by looking at your CMMS dashboard, conducting regular reporting (usually every quarter or at least once a year), and assessing Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s).

Your CMMS should track the KPI’s that have significant relevance to your organization’s maintenance and asset management needs—but it’s up to you to determine what those indicators are. Examples include equipment performance, productive and unproductive asset utilization, including idle time, preventative maintenance and demand maintenance downtime, breakdowns, and labor costs, as well as less obvious factors like occupant comfort, risk management issues, and energy conservation initiatives.

 Example of a KPI on Proteus MMX: Mean Time Between Failure (MTBF)

 To obtain a whole organization’s commitment to an efficient asset management strategy, the audit should be handled by a party that includes employees from top management, IT, labor, maintenance, operations, external consultants, engineering, and the head office. An external consultant is useful when conducting confidential interviews, supplementing an organization’s workforce, and providing objective third-party insights.

An asset management audit will establish how effective and efficient an organization’s current operations are. This can be done in numerous ways, such as work sampling to establish how productively maintenance workers are put to work or interviews with operations and maintenance personnel of all levels. Tools such as bottleneck analyses and information flow are used to identify system strengths, process strengths, and organizational strengths as well as weaknesses, from management reporting and follow-ups all the way to work requests.

Here’s a checklist of a small sample of the questions to be answered in an audit.

  1. CMMS/EAM system
  • Have you completed a Knowledge Transfer Form to evaluate how critical a task is to the mission of the organization?
  • What is the level of work backlog currently?
  • What is it supposed to be?
  • Are maintenance jobs planned, and include estimated labor hours, coordinated operations downtime, and material requirements?
  • Are planned material and hours usage compared with actuals? In what way does management react to adverse variances?
  • What is the ratio of policies regarding maintenance (fail-based: use-based: condition-based maintenance)?
  • Is asset maintenance thoroughly executed by the correct people, at the correct time?
  • Are all the high-volume and high-cost inventory items on an EOQ (Economic Order Quantity) and min/max control basis?
  • What are the spare parts stockout frequency? Can it be optimized?
  • How many rush orders are there every week? Can this be minimized?
  • What is the downtime level for each asset? Asset category/type?
  1. Culture
  • What do supervisors and their operators say about the attitude and capability of those that maintain assets, including management and workers?
  • What is the senior leadership team’s attitude toward asset management?
  • What is the collaboration level between departments?
  • Are there open and frequent communications between workers and management?
  • If lack of trust is a problem, what are the fundamental causes?
  • Have you done a Knowledge Loss Risk Assessment to establish if there’s a lack of knowledge among employees due to constant staff changes?
  1. Strategy
  • Is there a formal EAM strategy, completely understood and shared by management and workers?
  • What is the budgeted versus the real cost of the contract and internal labor, overtime, and spare parts, for the last month?
  • What is the objective and aims of CMMS according to maintenance management, Maintenance workers, Top management and operations?
  • Are there targets for the long and short term?
  • What incentives and measurements are in place to ensure that goals will be met?
  • Is there a lack of system knowledge in your organization? Have you gone through a Knowledge-Transfer-Checklist to ensure minimal operation interruptions?
  1. Governance
  • Does the current organizational structure properly support the CMMS strategy?
  • What is the perfect tradesman: supervisor ratio?
  • What is the supervisor’s role? As perceived by the supervisors. As perceived by the tradesperson.
  • Is there a definite succession plan?
  • Are full-time mechanics wanted in certain operations departments?
  • Are procedures and policies clearly defined, current, complete, and documented?
  1. Facilities
  • Are maintenance work and storage areas clean and organized?
  • Is there enough space to service equipment effectively?
  • Are there enough hand tools and machines?
  • Does the maintenance area layout reflect adequate attention to accessibility, safety, comfort, and material flow?
  1. Human resources management
  • Are jobs not adequately performed because of missing skills (e.g., engineering, trades)?
  • Are shifts resourced with an adequate level of skills and experience?
  • Is there critical process redundancy?
  • Is seniority a problem? For example, are the most inexperienced mechanics on an off-shift with minimum supervision?
  • How much is spent on training?
  • How much of the training money is spent on management vs maintenance workers?
  • Is training effectiveness and retention tracked?
  • Is there enough incentive and opportunity to cross-train or to upgrade to higher skill levels?

By conducting a thorough asset management audit organizations can establish where weak points are. This will help organizations manage their assets optimally. Using software, such as Proteus MMX will allow one to analyze and measure KPIs, which is a further help in the quest to improve asset management practices. To learn more about Proteus MMX and its asset management capabilities, give us a call at +1 (262) 241-3845, send an email, or schedule a demo.