The modern day challenge for manufacturing
The search for performance improvements coupled with cost reductions seems to be a never-ending struggle in the modern manufacturing organization. Owners and managers are constantly looking at different ways to help the company reach higher level of performance and efficiency with its core manufacturing. Basically, it’s about doing more with existing resources at a lower cost. In 2012, we noticed that a local Canadian favorite, Millstreet Brewery, downloaded Maintenance Assistant Free CMMS. It was an older version found on one of those free download sites but Millstreet is close to our office, so we arranged a site visit to see their brewing operations first hand. We spoke to Dave Coutts, the plant manager, about what they were trying to achieve by downloading Maintenance Assistant.
The obvious solution
“We wanted to reduce maintenance costs and improve asset productivity by moving from a reactive to a proactive maintenance focused organization by introducing a scheduled maintenance program” says Dave. “We were looking for a simple, intuitive and affordable CMMS solution that would allow us to get going quickly, but also let the team learn the new software at their own pace. When core systems are down, maintenance staff need to be available so setting aside dedicated time for training can be difficult. During his search, Dave came across a number of expensive, bloated systems that relied on heavy on-boarding, training and support. “Our electrician had used three different CMMS systems in the past, but none of them stuck out as memorable for performance, flexibility, ease of use and cost. Maintenance Assistant CMMS download version 3 is intuitive and had the functionality we needed so it seems like the perfect solution” says Dave.
“Our electrician had used three different CMMS systems in the past, but none of them stuck out as memorable for performance, flexibility, ease of use and cost. -Dave Coutts, Plant Manager Millstreet Brewery
Bad news from the battlefield
In 2013, we contacted Dave again to see how things were progressing with the implementation. Unfortunately, and to our surprise, due to lack of free time the implementation had stalled. According to Dave, they just didn’t have the time to configure the data into version 3 CMMS. Copying from paper manuals, asset nameplates and Excel to the CMMS and then building a hierarchy was a nightmare. This process alone had the potential to take weeks and Dave couldn’t get the time to give it a proper go. Given the regular interruptions that any maintenance operation faces, this was a recipe for failure. This sounded oh so familiar!
The problems that will go away
Over many years in business, MA had polled its thousands of customers to pin-point key failure points for CMMS implementations and the same 3 issues kept coming up over and over again:
- Installing the software and configuring the network
- Getting data into the CMMS
- Training your maintenance team
In 2011, we moved Maintenance Assistant CMMS to the cloud to take the pain out of downloading and configuring a CMMS. You can now get up and running on our servers in 60 seconds. In 2012, Maintenance Assistant launched version 5 with inline embedded training throughout explaining operational functions of the software as they applied to the task at hand. Users can grow or refresh their knowledge as they explore the application. Read more here! And in 2013, we completed developed an application called SpareTime™ that solves the data entry challenge and we were looking for beta customers to test it out.
An immediate success
In February 2013, armed with a tablet loaded with SpareTime™, we headed back to Millstreet Brewery to test-drive the new app in a live production facility. After a very quick two-minute demonstration, Reg Medina the maintenance manager began walking the plant, loading the system with images and data for the brewing equipment. It was great to see how quickly Reg got to work having never implemented a CMMS before. With SpareTime, the CMMS is populated as you walk the facility in real-time, rather than trying to visualize it from office desk outside the plant. In a matter of only three hours, the brewing facility was fully mapped with equipment, zones, pictures of the critical areas and nameplates. “I have to say, the new SpareTime App made it easy, and a pleasure, to get data into the system. It was great to see what needed to go into the CMMS in real time, right in the heart of the plant“ says Dave. “Our trainee maintenance technician, Brad McLeod, is now adding some final finishing touches and we plan to go live immediately.”
SpareTime – Setup your entire CMMS in hours, not weeks.
When you’re setting up a CMMS, you don’t have weeks or months to spare before hitting success. SpareTime gets you focused on your maintenance right away. It’s the quickest way to get setup on your CMMS with a single sweep of your facilities.
- Each asset is labeled, photoed and indexed in seconds by the maintenance manager based on what you feel is relevant and important
- Interact with and setup your CMMS right from your facility floor
- Setup locations and equipment en route through the plant
- Take reference pictures to associate with your assets, like name-plates, lockout locations, control panels etc
- Attach info for each subcomponent and feeder system
- Let the MA team find and attach manuals and manufacturing maintenance schedules
SpareTime™ lets users quickly capture data during a simple plant walk-through. They will be asked to take pictures of their facilities, equipment and people, and Maintenance Assistant CMMS takes care of the rest, creating a custom CMMS for them in hours or days.
About Maintenance Assistant
Maintenance Assistant helps companies drive down the cost of maintenance, work smarter and save money by helping to increase asset life, prevent equipment failure, track maintenance costs, improve productivity, reduce equipment downtime, and lower the total cost of ownership of equipment, while improving legal and regulatory compliance and capturing and retaining vital maintenance knowledge.
“Technicians actually like using our system, which drives utilization and reduces time-to-value. With modern tools like SpareTime™, we make data entry as painless as possible. In addition to gaining a deeper understanding of maintenance activities, better data capture protects a company from knowledge loss as workers retire or switch jobs. Making data entry as easy as possible is critical.”, said Marc Castel, CEO.
“With feedback and input from thousands of customers around the world we have been able to build an award-winning computerized maintenance management software (CMMS) service that simply works like it should. It’s exciting to see that we’ve become the CMMS technicians actually like to use.” said Bob Kandic, Senior Product Architect.
Since our launch in 2006, Maintenance Assistant has had over 25,000 CMMS installations in over 150 countries and in more than 30 languages. We are one of the fastest growing Maintenance Software solutions, providing a modern CMMS / EAM experience to clients around the world.
Empower your maintenance team
Leverage the cloud to work together, better in the new connected age of maintenance and asset management.