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8 actions for the successful implementation of CMMS

8 actions for the successful implementation of CMMS

Sunday 05 april 2020

Successfully launching a CMMS requires preparation, mobilization and personalized support from the publisher. This step is crucial to guarantee your organization the rapid optimization of its maintenance activities and the continuation of its digital transformation, which is essential in the race for competitiveness.

Successfully installing a CMMS will lead to more than a few basic changes in your maintenance operations. It is a true renewal that will propel your company forward, giving it a competitive advantage over outdated competitors by increasing its productivity and quality of service.

However, the transition from paper or an old solution to a modern tool that will be used by all your employees can lead to scepticism and resistance to change. This is even if, with new-generation CMMS solutions that offer a user experience similar to social networks, a mobile application and promote collaboration, companies are increasingly seeing an enthusiastic reception that encourages immediate appropriation of the solution you have chosen.

The path to a successful CMMS implementation can be mapped out, and applying simple rules and processes that are easy to adopt will greatly reduce obstacles. Here are 8 points that are necessary for the successful implementation of a CMMS.

1. Define your objectives

This is the most decisive step! These are the objectives that will shape the entire CMMS solution and therefore its implementation. Whether it's to facilitate team management, reduce equipment downtime, cut costs, improve safety, a successful CMMS implementation will help you achieve the results you're looking for for sure.

Define your business and maintenance objectives, as well as all the key parameters to achieve them, such as budget, tools, metrics, people and timelines.  These characteristics determine how to implement CMMS in accordance with the requirements set. To do this, it is crucial to know your capabilities and limits so that you can make your objectives realistic, measurable and achievable. If necessary, to help you, write a specification highlighting all your needs and the functionalities that are essential to you.

2. Preparing for change

The implementation of a CMMS represents a change that can make it a complex step towards success. Staff may have had a bad experience with a CMMS in the past or fear that new technologies will lead to overwork and increased control. Management and supervisors need to address these fears fully by involving the entire team in the implementation process.

Coaching, open and transparent communication on the project and brainstorming sessions will keep everyone informed, engaged and contributing to the success of the organisation. Quickly identify any objections and help users understand what benefits they will derive from CMMS. To do this, rely on the "early adopters" (or first adopters) within the team who like new things and who will be valuable to the success of the project by becoming ambassadors. Reinforce the support of the laggards, who are always worried about change and are the last to accept an innovation. Make sure that they are not stigmatized and encourage mutual support within the team. Your project will start like a charm and your team will become more cohesive.

3. Define the project schedule

The timeline for implementing a CMMS depends on several factors, including size, priority level, user capabilities, the sector in which you operate, etc. Work with internal stakeholders, such as technicians and facility managers, as well as the selected CMMS vendor to determine a realistic implementation schedule. Define key milestones so that progress can be tracked and quantified. Don't forget to allow time for user consultations, data configuration, testing and training.

While the schedule should be realistic, it should not be too long. The energy present at the start of the project will run out if the project is spread over too long a period. As an example, in Yuman we know how to implement a CMMS with a large functional scope, for a service of 35 people, in 2 to 3 weeks. That's the kind of lead time you need to demand. The days when projects lasted months or even years are definitely over and if you meet editors "talking about delays of several months, that must be a warning signal about the quality of its product and services.

4. Gathering your data

Be diligent in collecting data to be integrated into your system, such as service locations, equipment base, maintenance ranges, spare parts base, supplier details, etc. Take advantage of the change to restart with sound data by removing untidy, obsolete, unreliable and inaccurate information. This is usually the most time-consuming part of the CMMS implementation process. Once you have completed the collection and cleanup, all that remains is to transfer your data to the new CMMS application. The editor must work closely with you during this crucial step to ensure that users find all the information they need.

5. Carry out the CMMS setup

The setup or parameterization will allow you to adapt the CMMS solution chosen to your specific needs and expectations. The best solutions are largely modular to meet your requirements. A tool offering only limited possibilities is to be definitively ruled out. Several levels of customization must be proposed:

  • Identification of your company(ies): names, logos, addresses, VAT, bank accounts, etc.
  • Preferences: strategy for sending emails, SMS and notifications, report construction, time slots, etc.
  • User rights management
  • Mobile application behavior and permissions
  • Definition of custom fields allowing to modify the structure of a site, an equipment, a work order

Finally, you can call on the development team for a specific request that requires particular technical modifications.

6. Train users

Training helps CMMS users and administrators understand and use the system features efficiently. Training accelerates integration and helps increase user adoption by teaching best practices. Good training must be able to answer all the questions that may be asked and anticipate any difficulties that may be encountered. Above all, never stop giving staff opportunities to learn and develop: a fully operational employee will quickly become capable of training your teams himself.

A little tip: with the latest generation of CMMS such as Yuman, offering a very high level user experience, training times have been considerably shortened: 1 to 2 days for managers and half a day for technicians. Longer training cycles are offered as a warning about product quality.

 7. That's it: we're launching the CMMS!

This commissioning phase is crucial because this is the time when all users are supposed to stop using the old systems and work with the new CMMS tool. Inform all users of the exact date of the launch well in advance so that they can prepare themselves. Your CMMS supplier should be able to help you answer any questions and be available to deal with any complications. The launch can also be carried out in several successive steps in an incremental fashion.

Rest assured! If the data transfer has allowed a complete cleaning and loading of the information, if the application offers, from any device, easy to use interfaces and clear processes and if training has been provided, the launch will be enthusiastic and your department will instantly benefit from the new solution.

8. Tracking CMMS adoption

Congratulations, your CMMS is operational! However, your implementation is not yet complete. You need to monitor the entire system to make sure that all elements are working as planned, that all employees, managers and technicians have started using it.

So, to enable your company to take full advantage of the digitization of its maintenance operations, make sure you get feedback from users, for example through workshops at 3 months, 6 months or 1 year after start-up. Establish performance reports and monitor key performance indicators (KPIs).

Involve the editor of your CMMS so that he too can be informed of the progress of the project in your company, answer your questions and take your comments and suggestions into account.

Create a positive dynamic with Yuman

And that's why Yuman CMMS is constantly evolving. Improvements and upgrades are proposed continuously. A constant exchange between the user companies and Yuman enables us to constantly improve the application and to keep pace with the changing needs of the maintenance players.

CMMS is more than a tool, it is a new way of working. We should therefore not underestimate the importance of its implementation and understand the stakes involved in this digital transformation, with the key to productivity gains, increased quality of service and competitive advantage for the benefit of your customers, employees and your company.

Choosing a CMMS also means choosing a team to support you and make your life easier. Choose Yuman!

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