Maintenance and Operations, Sustainability/Business Continuity

The Future of Facilities Management and CMMS in 2024

In 2023, facility and maintenance managers saw the emergence of advanced technologies and artificial intelligence, new environmental sustainability regulations, and higher-than-ever customer expectations. With so many conflicting priorities, it is easy for facilities professionals to feel their heads spin.

In a recent survey of manufacturing and facilities management companies, maintenance professionals report a heavy focus on reducing equipment downtime and minimizing the high costs and lost revenue associated with it. Additionally, they report an increased reliance on advanced and automated technologies to help maintenance teams simplify workflows and meet the evolving demands of customers. Below are the top predictions and trends we anticipate for how facility maintenance professionals will tackle these persistent but evolving challenges in 2024.

Organizations Will Prioritize Strategies to Reduce Unplanned Downtime

Downtime occurs when a piece of equipment or machinery is not in operation, and it can be extremely costly for manufacturers. In fact, the cost of downtime is estimated to set manufacturing companies back $260,000 per hour. In addition to lost revenue, unplanned downtime also causes delayed service to customers, lost production time, and increased security threats to manufacturing facilities.

There has been an important shift across many industries to move away from a reactive approach to managing downtime and toward strategies that can prevent breakdowns before they occur. This trend has been accelerated by the increasing use of data and technology solutions that make a proactive approach to maintenance more attainable for organizations of various sizes and capabilities. As a result, we expect to see more facilities implementing preventative and predictive maintenance in order to keep their facilities and infrastructure functional.

When maintenance managers conduct equipment checks and routine upkeep on a regular basis, that is preventative maintenance. Predictive maintenance is performed only when needed, based on the condition of an asset. Regardless of the proactive approach taken, maintenance managers will invest in software like computerized maintenance management systems (CMMS) to aggregate and analyze equipment data. This enables predictive and preventative maintenance that can significantly reduce unplanned downtime and costly equipment failures.

Factories and Facilities Will See a Much-Needed “Face-Lift”

Most of the time, unplanned facility downtime is the result of preventable equipment malfunctions and a lack of necessary materials or parts. With both downtime and aging equipment and infrastructure being two of the top challenges for maintenance professionals in 2023, we expect to see companies investing in upgrades.

To improve the longevity of new machinery and facilities, maintenance professionals will start leveraging software and data analytics to make more informed “replace versus repair” decisions. With a CMMS—which provides asset-level analytics on cost and productivity—maintenance teams can better understand which equipment is still providing value and which would be more cost-effective to replace.

Technology Will Be Needed to Meet Evolving Customer Demands

With the increasing ubiquity of two-day shipping and same-day delivery, customers not only expect their items to arrive fast, but they also require constant access to status updates. Consumers are no longer satisfied with a “wait and see” model. Organizations that provide transparency in the form of real-time status updates on work requests will have an edge in the marketplace. Whether there are equipment issues or something breaks at a facility, consumers want to know their request has been received and be informed when a work order is complete.

As a result, more facilities will invest in tools that streamline work requests and automate status tracking and updates to work requesters in order to meet the expectations of customers. These solutions will also improve work management and communication workflows between maintenance teams and technicians. Not only will this increase efficiency among facility and maintenance professionals, but it will also increase transparency within teams, ultimately helping facilities meet customer expectations.

As the obstacles for facility and maintenance professionals evolve, so do the solutions that will help solve them. Going into 2024, the industry will continue to boom with the adoption of technological advancements that help improve processes for maintenance teams and the people and organizations they serve.

For more expert insights into facility maintenance, make sure to sign up for the January 23rd webinar, “How to Manage, Track, and Maintain Your Assets with Limble,” here.

Bryan Christiansen is the founder and CEO of Limble CMMS. Limble is a modern, easy-to-use mobile CMMS software that takes the stress and chaos out of maintenance by helping managers organize, automate, and streamline their maintenance operations.

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