In AkitaBox’s years of evolving facility management software, we’ve come across some frequent school facility management myths, especially when it comes to utilizing facility management software. As our K-12 expert, I want to tackle some of those persistent myths I hear about facility management software in schools, especially when it comes to and AkitaBox Essentials.
Myth #1 - Small schools don’t need facility management software
- Small schools certainly have different problems than larger districts, but some things in education are universal: The need to protect institutional knowledge from walking out the door. The need for clean, safe, and operational school buildings. The challenge of working with paper thin budgets. You could argue a facility management software is even more important for small school districts where staffs are smaller, budgets tighter, and community spotlight brighter!
Myth #2 - Facility management software isn’t affordable for schools
- Money is always tight with school districts, especially on the facilities side. Maybe you have even tried to get a new software before or been nickel-and-dimed before by another software vendor. Finding the right facility management software partner, though, can save your school money in the long run. Teams get hours back in their week to respond faster to service requests, complete more preventive maintenance tasks, or tackle that growing deferred maintenance list. For straightforward pricing, find a partner who offers a single pricing metric for unlimited users.
Myth #3 - Software will just slow down a good facilities team ... it's so hard to use!
- If you are using a legacy FM system, it can certainly feel that way. Facility management software should be designed and built so anyone can use it. As a former teacher, I know the pains and discouragement felt by older staff members when new technology was added to their list of new things to learn. Believe me when I tell you… my 4th graders could use AkitaBox to add work orders, assets pins and service requests. I know my older colleagues could handle it as well!
Myth #4 - Facility management software is only for the facilities team
- I know what you're thinking. "This has to be the first confirmed one, I mean ‘facilities’ is in the name!" Yet modern facility management software offers benefits to multiple teams within your district. The right platform will enable IT, administrators, security, and even food services teams to improve processes, complete service requests, and track vital assets. For example, Since La Crosse School District started using AkitaBox, their food delivery times have been cut down from multiple days to just a few hours.
Myth #5 - Price is the most important factor to consider when buying software
- You know the old saying "you get what you pay for?" This especially applies to facility management software for schools. Cheaper offerings like legacy CMMS offer limited flexibility, customization, and often will nickel-and-dime you for necessary upgrades like adding new users. Chances are that a cheaper offering is going to cost you in terms of frustrations, stress, and wasted time in the future.
But don't just take our word for it, in the 2021 State of K12 Facility Management Report 60% of K12 FM professionals listed user experience as a top factor when deciding on a new software.
Myth #6 - Small teams can't handle doing FM software self-implementation
- We hear this a lot from teams who worry they will never have time to implement AkitaBox Essentials. While it can seem daunting, it takes less than a minute to add a new asset pin to a floor. Even though adding all your assets takes time, you can start utilizing the service request portal and work orders immediately so you start enjoying the benefits of streamlined maintenance management.
Here are some tips and tricks our customers have used to implement assets faster:
- Start basic - just add the pin for an asset with the minimum required info. You can always go back and add more later on.
- Add assets as service requests, and work orders are created. This will help identify your most vital and in need of attention assets!
- Focus one day a week or a specific hour of each day on adding assets. Turn off your cell phone, block your calendar, and start inputting pins!
- Enlist help - Utilize the assistance of students in work study, National Honor Society students who need volunteer hours, or teachers aids with extra time. This not only helps implementation but gets kids interested in facilities management.
- Already have an asset list in excel? We can upload it into AkitaBox for you!
Myth #7- School boards don't see the value in buying facility management software for schools
- This is the tough one right? How do you convince non-facilities folks to understand the value a software can bring to your team? Our customers have had a lot of success here when they focus on what matters to the school board. Safe, healthy, and positive learning environments are always top of mind for the board. FM software helps your team maintain better schools and spaces for students to learn. Here are some other good resources you can use to help make your case:
- Verdict: To be determined