Published: Dec 12 2019

What to Prioritize After Implementing a CMMS solution


Episode 7 | Duration: 15:07 | Special Guest: Scott Jayder | Host: Trey Simonton | Series: Facilities Management

What's in this episode?

In our next FMCT episode, we discuss what to prioritize after your go-live on a CMMS solution, including major pitfalls and where to get the most value. If you would like additional information on CMMS implementation best practices and where to get started on your CMMS journey, contact us today.

Full transcript:

Trey: Welcome back to the continuation of the second series in our facility's management coffee talks. Our second series of coffee talks is specifically focused on best practices tied to implementation and operation of a computerized maintenance management system.
Trey: Today our topic is what to prioritize after you've implemented a CMMS solution and where you should focus first to ensure success.
Trey: We've asked Scott Jayder, a senior partner in Accuruent's clients success practice, to join us today to share his experience with some of Accuruent's largest and most strategic clients. Welcome to the podcast Scott. Hope you have your coffee.
Scott: Thanks Trey. Yes I do, and it would have only taste a little bit better if I could have had you buy it for me.
Trey: I like that a lot I hope you're not drinking the cheap stuff there.
Scott: No, it would be a lot more expensive if you were here I know that.
Trey: That's great. That is great. Well Scott, as you just heard, and what you may know, is that a lot of our listeners are operators. These are facilities managers that are looking at best practices for managing their day to day, where do they save money, and where do they focus to really engage broader parts of their organization.
Trey: So Scott, today's subject is really focused on, once you've launched a new MMS, CMMS platform once you've gone live, what should you do next? Where should you focus your next steps?
Scott: That's a great question Trey and I think from a system utilization perspective one of the key things you need to do once you go live is really kind of keep your finger on the pulse of the user community. Their adoption, how well they're utilizing the system after go live. And really kind of the continued communication internally really helps drive success from an internal utilization of the application perspective.
Scott: Some of the key areas that I see where customers tend to take that collective sigh of relief after they go live is they really stay within their swim lanes. I'm generating work orders, that's what I do today. Or I'm proofing invoices that's what I do today. And they really forget a lot of the advantages that the application provides.
Scott: One that I see my customers, and many customers fail to utilize are the existing reports in the application. There are several, very good standard reports that you can drive great information out of the application to help you understand what you're doing. And how you're doing within the application for driving value. And many customers will also include a COGNOS BI license as well, so they can further analyze their business.
Scott: I think that's one of the key drivers that I see customers fail to do, is to get out of their comfort zone and start digging and driving into the capabilities of applications from a reporting perspective for sure. The other thing I think is if it wasn't identified up front, and generally we try to do that in an implementation is really kind of identify who the champions are, right? So, you need the influence and enthusiasm from those champions within the organizations that are helping to drive the user community. And the acceptance and adoption of the application. It's key for the success of the application and then you get everybody kind of heading in the same directions. And really making sure you have the internal expertise to help with answering a lot of questions that come up within the use of the application. Ultimately what I've seen in my experience with working, especially with larger accounts is you create a lot more system experts within your organization with that kind of model.
Trey: So that's interesting you're early highlights seem to be about leveraging the solution to gain transparency and insight to where the spend is. You end it with something that really intrigues me which is, additional stakeholders. Is adoption and engaging more parts of the business a big priority?
Scott: Oh absolutely, and if you take a look at generally, you would want to establish not only a communication cadence but a managerial or a governance around who is the escalation points within. So there should be executives that are sponsoring this because ultimately when you're gonna get the decision that can't be made, but what ill say is the user community, it has to be someone in executive level. They absolutely should be part of that governance and help drive some of those decisions.
Trey: That's interesting you know we've had a number of guests on this podcast and one of the numbers that's bantered around that I find interesting is, that right out of the gate once you've implemented a CMMS platform you're really only getting about 25% of the value. Have you heard that number before?
Scott: Yeah, it's based upon the application and especially in the enterprise solution like BX maintain. There are so many things in that application from a customization and configuration perspective. It absolutely, it definitely does not lend itself well to just "hey I got a set and I stayed there" so absolutely.
Trey: So do you foresee a journey? I know you have worked with a number of Accruent's very large clients for years. Do they go down a journey where they're improving and better leveraging the solution over time?
Scott: Yeah, absolutely. And I think from a best practice perspective, since that's really what we want to talk about here, once a system has been established and has been put into production, it was based upon what I'll call the "as is" it's how the business is processing today. Right? So as you configure the application to how you mange your provider community, how you manage your accounts payable, how you manage your invoicing, how you manage escalation, contracts with your providers, whatever the case maybe can change.
Scott: So, the great thing about the application is the ability to do that. I always suggest at a minimum there should be an annual program review that we provide through our professional services organization. That really walks through what you're using today, how you're using it, and make recommendations on how we might want to change to better a number of things. It might be to, you know we're looking at the metrics that are acceptable to your organization, cause the big thing in this thing are the providers. So, how well they're preforming, what your spend is against the provider by category, by the fix SLA's, their acceptance SLA's, whether or not their compliance and their Geofence. And we like to come in and try to make sure the system is configured and then you're utilizing it to capture that very, very key data which drives value.
Trey: So that's interesting to me because now we're talking adoption of the system and our listeners obviously prioritize not only where they're going to save money but how do the get their service providers engaged? Do you have anything you'd recommend for driving service provider adoption of a new system? And a new process?
Scott: Absolutely and this is, I would say of all the customers that I deal with this one, this topic is probably the most often discussed and probably the least activity in terms of action items that actually get implemented. It's really kind of unfortunate but yes, from a provider perspective and their adoption, it's really about communication and transparency. The providers actually need to know and they need to be part of this process right. So if you put a system in and you're expecting them to do something, then you should be communicating what that is. And then communicating to them what you are going to be measuring, and make it a value statement because "hey do you know if you generate your work orders and you invoice them through our system you don't have to do that again, it's already going to into our accounts payable system so there's no more double entry."
Scott: There's things like that that you can be talking to your providers about that help drive value. And that should be a continuum so it's the transparency and the communication cadence should be consistent whether you're doing quarterly business reviews with your providers or whatever the cadence is you should be measuring, managing, and talking to them about the system utilization and the key drivers and how they are comparing against what you have said as your expected measurements for success.
Scott: As I talked about earlier, whether it's the time from an SLA perspective, how long it takes them to accept a work order, whether or not they're geofence compliance when they're on site when they start the work order. Do they meet fix SLA or if you're doing a lot of HVAC things like same day fixed percentage can be real key. All those metrics need to be measured and need to be communicated and talked through. So if you can get that established and them using the system I think it makes the provider better because if they understand where they're failing, it gives them an opportunity to get better. So as I tell my clients, tell the providers that if they're going to get better in working with you, that's going to help them get better working with all their accounts.
Scott: These are just some key drivers as I always say, you should never present it as "cracking the whip" like you are my provider, you will do it this way. It is a partnership and as long as you're communicating and staying consistent, and you have a cadence that works, and the expectations are set and you're working together on a frequency that makes sense then you drive success. And I think it's a win-win for everybody.
Trey: What I like that you just said Scott is yeah there needs to be a little bit of enforcement and compliance with these service providers but taking the time to educate them on the value of this new system is where you've seen some of your clients really get a win.
Scott: Absolutely and I've had a chance, I've actually sat in on quarterly business reviews with my clients and the providers. So I've learned first hand what they go through so it was great experience for me to get that from both sides and it really brought together everything ,for me, as to "oh I get it, that has to be a collaborative process, this is not a crack the whip you have to do it this way. This is about making everyone better, and everyone does get better.
Trey: So Let's talk bout that. What would you recommend to your clients as far as reviewing their progress, call it quarterly or annually, and kind of setting goals to start to maximize the use and the value out of a CMMS platform.
Scott: Yes, so there's a couple areas that we talk about. I think from setting the goals and measuring that, for me and my clients what I do is I will do an annual business review. So we measure the key metrics that they want to be successful at. And that might be spend by category or asset it might be cross providers. It might be the areas that are key for them from an SLA perspective. And we look at that, and then we rank them, then we come up with I'll call it a top ten list of things that we need to do, collaboratively, and what they need to do with their provider community collaboratively to drive better results.
Scott: So what I generally will do is, we'll put together a priority list starting from 1-10 or whatever it might be and we indicate what it is we are trying to drive towards. If it's hey I want to have an 85% geofence compliance in the application is what my goal is and I've got providers that aren't there, what is my plan to get there? So we would score that and indicate, note that who would be responsible for it, what they're going to do, and a date associated with that. So every quarterly business review that I have with my clients then following that is then my opportunity to help track and drive where we are in the success of that.
Scott: Nothing measured nothing gained so that's really what we try to do from that business review. Do that quarterly and make sure and hold my clients and the users of the application accountable for getting some of these things done.
Trey: So that's interesting, I like the accountability. Let's imagine, and again, some of our listeners have had a CMMS system in place for a number of years. What are some of the advanced tactics you see tied to leveraging a CMMS system? Are there assets level management, focus on warranties? What do you see in out years as really advanced best practices?
Scott: Great question, and really that's a subject that's dear and near to my heart and one that I continually press with my clients and that's really about managing your facilities at the asset level. If you're not managing your spend at the asset level you're missing what I consider probably the top return on investment elements within the application. Managing spend and then also along with that is the warranties, cause many clients don't do a really good job at managing the warranties and end up spending money on assets that, had they have been tracked and had they have been managed not only at the asset level for spend but also warranties, they wouldn't be spending. Cause I can assure you that's happening, probably happening and whoever's listening to this it probably does happen, but it's interesting that generally becomes a phase two in most of the client's repertoire in terms of utilization of the application.
Scott: It generally can be a very involved process because you have to build it. If you've got thousands and thousands of assets it takes times, and some of my clients they do have thousands and thousands and thousands of assets. But the value and power of those key assets that you put in is really where you drive the value and I think that is something that needs to be a focal point and I focus with my clients is to get that in as soon as you can. We've done comparisons on customers who have done asset category spend tracking versus the actual asset level and they can be significant.
Scott: Again, depending on your asset mix the number of assets that we have seen some of our customers have realized more than 4,000 dollars per store annually savings by deploying multi level asset tracking. That's significant so if you talk about five, six, seven, hundred, or a thousand, or five thousand, or ten thousand stores, it adds up significantly. That is a huge return on investment and one that is always a struggle to get going soon, and my recommendation is to get after that and get after that as soon as possible.
Trey: So that's interesting, you're saying out of the gate clients should create a process for capturing asset level data, knowing that over tie having that data in the system is how they start to get the value. Is that correct? Is that what I heard?
Scott: Yeah I think as I had indicated and I think you're pretty much right on there, Trey. I think if you're not going to deploy it, right out of the get go, which many don't because it's a lit of things to have to get done. Unless you already have the asset information available and the assets are tagged then its no brainer you start with that right away but if they aren't and you need to build it, it should be part of your deployment and roll all plan. SO it should state that, that after I go live I start on my asset process and my warranty process, 30 days after that and I want it deployed by region or whatever the structural design of how you want to roll this out and it should be, I want all my assets in and tracked by this date. It should be part of the plan.
Trey: That perfect well Scott we are nearing the end of our time. Any warnings or any pitfalls you would share with our listeners to really make sure they don't make any common errors that you see with some of your clients
Scott: Yeah another great topic. So, the first thing I would avoid is complacency. As I said earlier in our conversation, don't stay in your swim lane. Explore the system, use the reports, dig in, figure out what you can get out of here. What it can drive. I mean I've been around the application for a long time and there are still some things that its like "oh I didn't know it could do that." I would strongly suggest that you just explore and utilize the application and stay focused.
Scott: The other pitfalls that I see at least my clients, and that's holding your providers accountable. I mean too often we just continue on the path of business as usual and you don't measure our success or the lack there of from your providers and you're not communicating with them. So again, make it collaborative, make it a win-win for both.
Scott: But absolutely you must hold your providers accountable and measure them against who the competition is because you'll have that data. If you've got multiple providers, that's providing services for you across the country there maybe regions and stuff where they maybe better than others. So those are all things that I think you can help them get better at. And again, I'm going to say it again, I mentioned it earlier but knowledge is power, the use of the reporting tools is key. I can tell you that, not just at Accruent but in my previous life in working with other applications, it tends to be something that just sits there in the closet and we don't look at it. And there are way too many great, great tools and data that can be retrieved out of here that you need to get after.
Scott: So I think those are some three key ones and of course, obviously, if you're not doing asset level tracking and warranties, absolutely you've got to do that.
Trey: Sounds like our listener need to become real champions for their CMMS platforms.
Scott: It does help.
Trey: Thank you. Scott thank you very much. Thanks for making the time. This is exactly what we hoped to get from your experience and your wisdom with clients. We appreciate you joining the podcast today.
Scott: My pleasure Trey and I thank you and for those listening I hope you enjoyed it and I hope we have an opportunity to meet one day. Thank you.
Trey: Sounds good and as a reminder to our listeners please continue to tune in to the second series in our facilities management coffee talks. Submit any questions or any subjects that you have and we'll try to address them on a future podcast. Thanks again, Scott.
Scott: Thank you.