Before the implementation of FAMIS, the Facilities team faced a number of challenges that can be categorized into these three areas:
- The inability to track service request rates and completed work
- The operational focus on reactive maintenance
- The lack of a central system of record for facilities data
Request tracking and execution.
The greatest challenge the university facilities team faced was the inability to track service requests or completed work. Faculty and staff members had to either ask a maintenance worker directly in person or on the phone when an issue occurred. This lack of visibility into the request process would, in turn, lead to more problems, such as forgotten and untracked requests. Ultimately, the lack of request tracking meant that the university’s policies were not enforced by the technicians throughout the campus.
“With our current system, there was just no way to know how much time was required for various types of requests,” said Sarah McGing, Facilities and Operations Manager, Columbia College Chicago.
Preventive maintenance tracking.
Additionally, preventive maintenance occurred infrequently, resulting in regular equipment failure and forcing the facilities team to work strictly as a reactive organization. This focus on reactive or purely corrective maintenance resulted in allocating crucial funding and resource hours to potentially avoidable repairs and replacements.
Disparate and redundant facilities systems.
Adding to this, there was no way to quantify their technicians’ time. With an engineer in each building, one engineer could be swamped with 3 emergencies while another would have nothing to do. Without a central system of record for facilities data, a technician would know the issues faced in their building but not in any of the other buildings, requiring that technician to do all of their own preventive maintenance and reactionary work. No one was held accountable, be it the requestor or the facilities department.