In the years that I personally have been working with heavy-duty equipment maintenance tracking software, or the preferred term, Computerized Maintenance Management Software (CMMS), the need for these systems seems to have evolved from a novelty, to a competitive edge, to an outright necessity. The necessity at this point simply falls into the category of competition – you can bet that the shop down the street is doing all they can to organize for efficiency, be able to take on more business and portray a more professional image by using a system, so to be competitive, investing in similar tools becomes necessary.
It’s no secret that the most efficient and cost effective way to reign in maintenance costs is to avoid roadside breakdowns as much as possible. By the time a unit actually breaks down, a part has typically completely failed and may have caused further damage to adjacent components – roadside assistance may have to be called and that isn’t cheap. Worst of all, a customer’s load may have been in transit and now your business might not be fulfilling promises made. The damage to a reputation can be much more concerning than the damage to a single piece of equipment. Even a well maintained fleet has little use without business.
Most will find it much more satisfying and efficient to organize smart Preventative Maintenance (PM) schedules for example, get units through a service bay periodically to help ensure that actual deliveries and rental contracts are properly honored.
Further to that, fleet maintenance software offers no end of data to analyze for the sake of pinpointing where maintenance efforts should be directed. Unit depreciation can be properly tracked. Part failures and employee competence can be tracked and analyzed.
The team behind the EMDECS CMMS system is proud to be on the leading edge of maintenance analytics – the process of using amassed equipment maintenance history data to help predict future breakdowns and part failures. We have a saying – ‘This is rocket science’ – as these types of analytic models were originally developed for NASA’s space shuttle program and were used to determine when the risk to the existing shuttle fleet outweighed the program’s potential usefulness.
The necessity is to be organized, professional and efficient. The future gains from fleet maintenance software are not yet fully realized.