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4 Ways to Reduce Building Maintenance and Operations Costs

August 17, 2023

Facilities maintenance budgets are often underfunded. As a result, building operators must be resourceful, creative, and practically magicians to keep their assets operating properly. Over time, this lack of funding creates the reactive state that many facility teams find themselves in today. Reactive maintenance breeds a host of costly problems for organizations, such as emergency maintenance, higher energy costs, and high staff turnover rates.

However, there are actions you can take to reduce your maintenance costs and begin transitioning to a more proactive approach. The four strategies below can help you optimize facilities management at your organization and bring down maintenance costs.

How to Reduce Building Maintenance Costs in your Organization

1. Improve Your Team Training

Reducing maintenance and operations costs starts with your teams knowing what to do. Your teams need technical training so they can repair equipment properly and complete preventive maintenance tasks. They also need to be trained on the type of culture that celebrates proper maintenance and collaboration.

Conducting regular training sessions may not seem like a high priority, but the more skilled your team is, the less time they’ll spend waiting on instructions or help and the less rework other team members will need to do. To get an idea of where to start, review your team’s key performance indicators (KPIs) to identify areas that need improvement. Your facility management software’s reporting dashboard can also provide helpful insights into what training your team may need.

2. Track Asset Work Order History

Knowing what work has been done and when on different assets can:

  • provide insights into whether an asset should be replaced
  • identify changes to preventive maintenance schedules
  • indicate when to bring in an outside consultant

Without this tracking, you’re forced to rely on your memory or search through mountains of paper work orders to hopefully find the answers. Inaccurate or incomplete asset maintenance data can lead to decisions that cost your organization more money.

With easily accessible documentation, you can see that your team replaced the same motor in your HVAC system three times over the span of a couple months because it kept catching fire (yes, this actually happened!). Having complete, accurate, easy-to-find maintenance history means you can more quickly spot issues (or emerging issues) and take action BEFORE things get out of hand.

3. Automate Preventive Maintenance Schedules

Most facilities teams feel like “firefighters” caught in a reactive maintenance cycle. It can seem like you’re stuck in quicksand – no matter how hard you fight, you keep falling further and further behind.

Part of the problem is that when things get hectic, preventive maintenance tasks almost always get pushed. It makes sense, right? With preventive work, there isn’t an angry occupant on the other end or a boss who is hearing it from executive leadership to get that broken equipment fixed. Yet this causes that reactive cycle to continue to spiral as these delayed preventive tasks lead to future breakdowns that end up costing way more to fix in the future.

Automating your preventive maintenance schedules in a facility management software can prevent these tasks from falling through the cracks and keep them top of mind for your team. Preventive maintenance is a proven way to reduce maintenance costs and extend the useful life of your assets.

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4. Use the Right Facility Management Software

Great facilities management software sits at the heart of any strategy you choose for streamlining your maintenance and operations duties. That’s because a good software tool stores all of your facilities data in one place and makes it easy to access and update that data at any time. Powered by dependable, accurate data, your team has the information they need to complete their maintenance duties more efficiently and effectively.

Speaking of your team, one of the biggest drains on facilities maintenance budgets can be training and onboarding new staff. During onboarding, your team has to deal with reduced productivity – because new hires are still learning the ropes and the experienced staff have to take extra time to train them. This can become a real blocker to getting things done, especially if you have had or are about to have veteran staff retiring.

If your team is using a facility management software, especially a software that has asset mapping and digitized floor plans, your new employees can quickly learn the ins and outs and routes of your facilities. Your software can also save them tons of time when it comes to looking up critical information, such as any maintenance histories, O&M manuals, or special notes left by their team mates. With the right facility software, you can slash new employee training from months to weeks and save your department tons of additional dollars in the operations budget.

Reduce Maintenance Costs with AkitaBox

As a comprehensive FM system, AkitaBox Pulse lets you manage your work orders, assets, inspections/compliance, and even your facility assessments and capital planning all in one tool. Managing maintenance tickets, setting up preventive maintenance schedules, and tracking KPIs is easy for you. Meanwhile, completing work orders, conducting inspections, looking up asset information, and updating data in the system is easy for your team.

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A more efficient, productive team + a streamlined system for handling both reactive and preventive work = cost savings galore. That’s what you get with AkitaBox. If you want to reduce costs while improving maintenance excellence at your organization, we can help. Contact us to learn more. You can even request a customized demo below.

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Betsy Francoeur

Betsy is AkitaBox's Content Manager. She loves to write blog posts, e-books, whitepapers, emails, and magazine articles about all things facilities management. She also enjoys traveling, running 5ks, and cuddling with her dog.

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