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Robin Camarote, Founder and CEO of Craft and Atlas LLC along with Bill Warren, University of Pittsburgh Medical and Anand Sankey, Western Michigan University spoke last week at the NFMT Baltimore Conference showcasing how Star Wars can teach you about managing buildings and the success they have had with their employees and companies.

The three panelists discussed how the Star Wars movies have a lot to offer in terms of outlining best practices in leadership, management, teamwork and technology when it comes to facilities management.

Toughest Challenges in Facilities

Here are the top five challenges facility managers and owners face in their infrastructure.

Office Buildings
  1. Transition of the work force – New hires are unaware of current facility and asset conditions without proper documentation causing the learning curve to be slower due to retrieval processes;document management could help close that gap and make the work flow easier and quicker
  2. Customer base – Ability to meet expectations with resources on hand and gaining knowledge as a new comer to be up to speed on customer needs
  3. Upgrades to facilities – Repairs and replacements become vital to the sustainability of your facility and the best way is through preventive maintenance
  4. Age of facility and technology – Maintenance is a necessary tool to keep infrastructures in prestine condition with the use of technology, such as an EAM/CMMS

Data collection was another challenge brought up showcasing that facilities will collect more data than is necessary costing more time and money than is needed. Robin Camarote stated only 12% of data is actually being used out of all data collected on a specific asset/condition.

Building owners want an array of information on their structure, such as building assets, building space, and financial information, however do not collect information if you don’t plan on implementing it.

The proper way to check, maintain, and evaluate the conditions of your assets in your facility is through the use of an EAM/CMMS. Facility managers also use a KPI to determine how well they are achieving their business goals.

Best Practices Using a EAM/CMMS

Implementing an EAM/CMMS enables property managers to build a data base of work orders and results so that an entire facility’s assets can be reviewed, identify problems, and schedule the appropriate frequency of inspections to minimize repair costs. This allows facility managers to recognize which assets are saving or costing them the most and how to save more.

man searching files in a archive

A CMMS will record contract data such as vendor information, costs, terms, and hours of operation. Management reports identify assets that are being repaired too often or are nearing the point where it may make better sense to replace than fix.

With proper EAM/CMMS implementation, property managers will know where there assets are at all times, their condition, their maintenance history and expected retirement/replacement.