The maintenance work order is a manager’s best friend
What is a work order? A work order is the best way to get a job done right. It is a superior communication tool. The better the work order is constructed, the faster and better the work will be completed.
In maintenance, using the best work orders is crucial, because modern infrastructure is just too complex for any one person to deal with. Work orders have evolved from paper to software based, to encourage teamwork. Teamwork breeds success.
Components of a work order
Work orders are often called: job orders, job tickets, work tickets, or purchase orders (when used externally.) Work orders are contracts that lay out:
- Who is authorizing the activities and who is carrying them out.
- Description of the task. Either producing a product, or performing a service.
- Expectations around timeline and performance indicators.
- Task details.
The devil is in the details, and software work orders excel at keeping track of details. Clear authorization promotes employee accountability. Defined expectations keep your work focused on excellence.
History of work orders
Work orders have been getting the job done for a long time.
The very first work order was issued over a million years ago, from an older hominid to a younger hominid, as “put some more wood on the fire”. Later on, Genghis Khan issued specific work orders to his many sons to each conquer their own private corner of Europe and Asia.
The advent of writing brought the written work order. In 1290, European rulers began issuing “Letters of Marque” to “Privateers” (licensed pirates) such as Captain Kidd, authorizing them to raid foreign shipping.
Captain Kidd was hanged because of confusion over his work order.
Don’t let this happen to you!
Evolution of work orders
Since the industrial revolution, infrastructure just keeps getting more complex, and computerized maintenance management software (CMMS) has evolved to take the proven track record of the humble work order to a whole new level. Work orders live in the Cloud now, updating technicians and their managers in real-time.
Work order software keeps track of all the information needed from service manuals to pictures taken on site, and connects it with inventory data and purchasing resources, to leave everything at a manager’s fingertips.
How work orders can help you
So if we ask ourselves, “What is a work order?”, the answer is “A communication tool designed to help you get jobs done quicker and better.” A better question is “What is the best work order?”
Whether you are Genghis Khan or the maintenance manager of a medium sized factory, “the best work order is a well completed work order.”
Use your work order to authorize the work, set out the scope, choose who will do it, and establish the expectations. MA CMMS software allows you to do this with drop down menus, and a few mouse clicks. Once you have the order created, plug in all of the maintenance information required: service manuals, parts required, and more, click “Assign”, and put your feet up.
Following the status of software maintenance work orders is easy, as the Cloud automatically updates you as each step is completed. You can even mine your the data in your work orders for reports on costs, efficiency, and savings.
Maintenance work order software systems are a manager’s best friend.