The scheduling process is imperative to successful maintenance management. Jobs need to completed in a satisfactory manner and enough time needs to be allocated so that the equipment maintenance can be properly handled. As your business grows and work gets busier, it can become very easy to make any of these common scheduling mistakes.
A Severe Lack of Communication
The biggest mistake, and the most common, made by scheduling teams is a lack of communication between managers and employees. Technicians need to be made aware of every change when they are in the field, which is why cloud based CMMS software has become increasingly popular.
Not Listening to Feedback
The workers on the ground have valuable insight into how long a job will take compared to how long it has been scheduled to take. This feedback should be taken seriously and taken into account when scheduling maintenance for similar jobs.
Providing No Feedback
On the other hand, many field technicians do not provide the required feedback because they believe it will be dismissed. Managers should make it clear that all feedback will be taken seriously to make the process run smoother for all involved.
Being Unclear with Technicians
A work order should contain all the necessary information for a technician to perform their job properly in the field. If the information about the job or the equipment is too vague it can result in a situation where everybody falls behind schedule.
Managers should never impose an unrealistic deadline on team members. This will only lead to rush jobs that are not completed satisfactorily. CMMS software makes it easier to gauge a realistic deadline based on past jobs.
Forgetting to Consider Safety
When making scheduling decisions from an office, it can be very easy to forget about the safety of team members at the facility. Safety should always be the top priority and enough time should be provided for the maintenance work to be completed securely.
Not Spending Time in the Field
While planning and scheduling, it can be easy to forget about what life is like in the facility. Everybody responsible for scheduling should take the time to occasionally leave the office to visit the job sites. This will give managers a better idea of the requirements of the people representing them at the site.
Improperly Distributing Resources
Technicians in the field need to have the proper resources to complete the tasks they have been scheduled to accomplish. If the resources required to complete the job have not been properly communicated to them, everybody can quickly fall behind schedule.
Forgetting to Double Check
The most common scheduling mistakes are made by not double checking work orders. Over booking and double booking happen constantly by overworked managers, but is caught almost immediately once the jobs are looked over a second time. Take the time to check the schedule carefully to make sure a common mistake doesn't set the entire team back.
Relying on Spreadsheets
CMMS software exists to make the scheduling process easier for everybody involved, but many managers are resistant to change and will not use the technology that has helped many in the industry redefine how to handle the scheduling process.
Software has come a long way to manage the scheduling process and deter many of these common scheduling mistakes from happening. While many managers are still hesitant to adopt software, preferring to rely on spreadsheets, it may just be what's needed to make the process smoother for all team members involved.
“My plant achieved a best-in-class grade for maintenance efficacy in a recent audit. When corporate leadership asked what changed, I told them it was because we deployed Sockeye. With Sockeye, we’ve really made a huge improvement in our workforce utilization, by being able to easily schedule the right technician, to the right task, at the right time." - Maintenance Planner at a Fortune 500 Pharmaceutical Company