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What Companies Want in CMMS Software: Key Lessons from the Software Advice Survey

Thousands of interviews with company owners and managers conducted by Software Advice, a preventive maintenance software evaluation company, on the topic of maintenance management have revealed a puzzling fact: the need for tools like CMMS to streamline maintenance operations and asset tracking is as strong as ever, yet a striking number of companies remain reluctant to transition away from familiar paper or spreadsheet-based manual systems.

According to a recent Software Advice survey, some 48% of the companies interviewed still rely on these outdated methods to track their maintenance, and a further 19% said that they weren’t tracking maintenance at all. Together, they account for a whopping 67% of the companies surveyed.

So what’s holding these companies back? The survey was conducted among companies interested in implementing a CMMS system, with some 62% citing the need to improve operational efficiency—so it’s clear that they see the value in these solutions. And fully 80% of the companies surveyed said they plan on implementing a system within the next six months, so there’s also a strong sense of urgency to get something in place.

The persistent reluctance to implement a system must therefore involve some other factor. One explanation of these puzzling results comes from John Rimer, owner of FM360 Consulting and a 15-year veteran of the facilities management industries, who suggests that many of these companies consider the process of transferring data to a new system “laborious and risky.”

Among the 22% of companies surveyed who already use a CMMS system but are looking to upgrade, increasing efficiency and moving to a more modern solution were two of the most common motivating factors.

With 20 years of experience providing CMMS solutions, ManagerPlus brings understanding and expertise to these issues. Here are three key lessons from the Software Advice survey and how ManagerPlus products and solutions are specifically designed to address them:

+ Data Transfer and Product Implementation. Companies are wise to be cautious when it comes to transitioning to a new system. Errors made during the initial setup can doom it to failure, wasting substantial time and money.

This is why it is crucial that companies do their homework and learn about the implementation and training services offered by CMMS providers. Feature sets and functionality matter little if the system isn’t set up properly, and companies need to ask detailed questions about how the transition will be handled before making a purchase.

The best way to ensure that the transition process is minimally “laborious and risky,” is to entrust it to implementation and training experts who know what they’re doing.  ManagerPlus consistently ranks among the most popular CMMS providers in large part because of our best-in-class implementation and training solutions.

The idea that our performance is measured by our clients’ success is central to our company philosophy, which is why we invest substantially in implementation and training and always treat these services as a priority—we’ve even published thought pieces in industry leading journals on the subject.

The bottom line: the extent to which a CMMS provider understands the implementation/transition process is a measure of how effective their products are likely to be.

+ The need for modern software. Among the companies looking to replace their existing CMMS system, 24% cited the need for a more modern solution. According to the report, some of the companies were still using DOS-based systems that have been outdated for well over a decade.

In CMMS, it is common to find companies that offer a basic software package that they do not regularly update or improve. And in many cases, if improvements are made, they tend to be more maintenance oriented, addressing compatibility issues rather than introducing new functionality.

This is why ManagerPlus has embraced the role of a solutions provider: we realize that our clients’ ongoing success depends on our ability to stay ahead of the curve technologically by expanding our functionality and developing on new platforms such as mobile and SaaS.

+ Perfecting core functionality.  Preventive maintenance, asset management, and work order management remain the key needs driving CMMS adoption, but you wouldn’t know it to look at some CMMS vendors.

Many CMMS providers have not improved their core functionality for years, while others have been purchased by larger companies that offer more broad-based solutions. In the latter case, the maintenance management piece is often neglected as a small part of a huge, complex system.

Even as our products have expanded and improved, ManagerPlus has remained committed to perfecting the core functionality that our clients need most. In virtually every new release and update of our products, we introduce tweaks and changes that improve our clients’ experience and make their jobs easier.

+ Conclusion. Companies who are on the fence over whether to implement a CMMS system have a lot of factors to consider. Fortunately, as we’ve seen, a simple review of ManagerPlus products and services can make the decision simple.

 

 

 

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