Every property manager knows preventative maintenance is important, yet it’s rarely a priority in the field
What’s Preventing Preventative Maintenance?
First of all, property managers have competing priorities. Service managers deal with things that feel a lot more urgent than preventative maintenance.
You’re contending with resident issues, personal issues, evictions, and other urgent concerns. That makes it easy to ignore a post-it note on the wall that says we need to change out all the filters in the HVAC units this month. It just doesn’t rise to the same level of importance.
Also, we expect service managers or technicians to know how to do preventative maintenance, but not everybody knows it all. And no one can remember what’s supposed to be done, and when, all the time.
We expect on-site teams to know about every single piece of maintenance that needs to be done on every piece of equipment on this property even when there isn’t a process in place. And that’s without having any resources to train people, which is another sticking point.
Putting time and resources into training service staff on preventative maintenance oftentimes gets overlooked. It’s just not in the budget. We just don’t have time to do it. And months or years can go sometimes without performing important preventative maintenance.
The Ramifications of Ignoring Maintenance Tasks
We’ve seen it happen, and we’ve seen the ramifications. We’ve seen HVAC systems across an entire property fail because the water treatment wasn’t done properly, or the coils weren’t cleaned in a timely fashion. Those tasks have real ramifications.
Even if you have one property that executes preventative maintenance well, and you have a plan that everyone has access to, it doesn’t mean that you’re going to get consistent execution from property to property. You have different levels of experience and expertise throughout a portfolio.
How to Make Preventative Maintenance Easier
How do you make preventative maintenance easier?
First, rather than working from a binder, a clipboard, or an Excel spreadsheet, put your preventative maintenance tasks into a system. Put them into a software package that will push preventative maintenance tasks out to your service teams at the right time.
By sending tasks to the right person with the form or inspection that they need to perform, you can support them with the information they need to successfully perform preventative maintenance even if they’re not an expert.
In other words, this system gives staff information that they can use even if they aren’t fully trained. They might be unfamiliar with what you’re asking them to do. And as they perform that maintenance you can track it in real time. If anything falls through the cracks, you know about it well before it becomes a problem.
Learning From Data
Also, you’re capturing data through that preventative maintenance process. You’re getting the pH levels of the pool and equipment operating temperatures. You’re getting photos of holes in the roof that need patching. With Leonardo247, you can gather that data together and package it up in a report.
Property managers, community managers, regional managers, and owners can look at it to see what their teams did. They can see where the deficiencies are. They can see which work obligations weren’t performed. It’s all in a package so that you can run the report anytime you need it.
Leonardo247 makes preventative maintenance easier in other ways too. Before Leonardo247, you’d have to create a bunch of work orders for every property that described all the preventive maintenance you wanted to happen there. Or you’d expect people to refer to an Excel workbook that lists all the preventative maintenance when it’s supposed to happen.
Creating Maintenance Templates
With Leonardo247, however, you just create a template. If you have a pool, for example, and your property is in the Northeast, the pool close-out preventative maintenance that you need to do pops up every November. It includes instructions and an inspection form. The form confirms that someone drained the lines and stored the pool equipment in the proper location. A Leonardo247 template can automate all of that.
Those templates will generate preventative maintenance tasks throughout your portfolio. They’ll appear at the right times during the year with the right forms and documentation. And as field teams complete those tasks, you can look at a dashboard for real-time visibility into that preventive maintenance. You can also see what was missed and any reasons those tasks weren’t done.
You also get data from every completed form and inspection in the preventive maintenance process. And you can instantly pull that data up and look for trends, identify deferred maintenance issues, and take action — all within Leonardo247.
You can create work orders, follow-up work orders, and follow-up workflows as needed. Leonardo247 facilitates all of that information. That way, your teams perform the preventative maintenance work as well as the follow-on work. And you can track that. Over time, you’ll see a reduction in work orders, you’ll see an extended useful life of equipment, and other value-added benefits to your assets.