What is Facilities Management Software?
Facilities management (FM) software enables organizations to manage their entire repair and maintenance program from a web-based dashboard. This type of software is designed to help businesses save time and money by properly managing their buildings, assets, and occupants more efficiently and effectively.
With a robust facilities management platform, multi-site facility managers can perform a range of functions related to ongoing maintenance and repair, including asset management, commercial contractor sourcing and compliance, work order fulfillment, preventive maintenance scheduling, invoicing, and data analytics. The right tools allow FM teams to adequately track usage of space, analyze spending patterns over time, increase energy efficiency, and cut costs – all while enhancing communications with service providers and internal stakeholders.
Key Benefits of Facilities Management Software
A robust platform will facilitate a range of tasks necessary to ensure 24/7 brand support across all locations while also providing strategic insights into maintenance costs and resource allocation. Key benefits of facilities management software include streamlined contractor invoicing and payment processing, improved visibility into work order management, and increased access to facilities data:
Repair & Maintenance Management
The primary responsibility of any FM team is keeping assets in optimal working condition, which involves proactive scheduling of any needed repairs or maintenance (R&M). The right software makes it easy to submit work orders on the go, track their status, and ensure completion.
Parts & Supply Management
FM software provides an easy-to-use mechanism where businesses can buy approved sourced and contracted materials. Maintaining control over these purchases helps businesses save money, ensure quality, streamline ordering, and keep track of warranties.
Using facility management software, contractor invoices can be submitted online, validated against contracted rates and applicable sales taxes, coded for G/L processing, and linked with third-party accounting systems.
FM software provides a single platform where a comprehensive record of all equipment and locations, including all work history and maintenance records, can be stored. This simplifies the tagging, management, and tracking of equipment warranties, mandatory inspections, and planned maintenance.
Most facilities management platforms offer digital RFP management, which allows FMs to easily send a Request for Proposal (RFP) to one or more contractors, monitor RFP status, and quickly accept or sign contracts.
Call Center Access
Facility management software often includes call center access for 24/7 work order submissions by location staff over the phone. This allows for formal follow-up of time-sensitive service requests to ensure timely contractor performance and reassignment, if needed.
Contractor Sourcing and Management
Facility teams can access qualified, vetted, and insured contractors and all contractor data, including W-9 forms and insurance information, through a centralized database. This simplifies the contracting process and ensures higher quality work at a lower cost.
Preventive & Scheduled Maintenance
Preventive maintenance is the key to keeping R&M costs down. With FM software, you can schedule, authorize not-to-exceed (NTE) pricing, and validate all preventive and scheduled facility maintenance events – including mandatory inspections.
Open and Scalable Architecture
Cloud and SaaS-delivered facilities management software works regardless of the underlying IT platform and can easily be adapted to company-wide system updates or changes.
Facilities Management Software Features
- Simplified Work Order Management – Location staff can enter facility maintenance service requests directly into the system; work orders are then routed to the appropriate contractor at appropriate, pre approved rates.
- Staffing Support – One-on-one support from experienced ServiceChannel staff for ongoing solution upgrades and maintenance, contractor and site-specific location onboarding, and scalability as your organization continues to grow.
- Software as a Service (SaaS) Platform – Our continually updated, cloud-based facility management system eliminates costly software installs and upgrades and removes the burden of supporting additional hardware – all of which dramatically reduces total cost of ownership.
- Spend Analysis – All facilities management spend data and analytics are displayed in real time in easy-to-read dashboard graphics. View historical data, identify trends and outliers, benchmark against goals and industry standards, and forecast future spend.
- Third-Party Integrations – ServiceChannel’s facility management software easily connects to other corporate platforms such as third-party accounting and payment systems, minimizing data input errors and streamlining payment and audit processes.
- Easily Source and Credential Contractors – Enjoy simple, automated processes for maintaining and updating contractor contact and payment information, and track insurance and certifications. Plus, access our contractor directory to find qualified service providers with the right skills for the specific project.
FAQs About Facilities Management Software
Facility management software is designed to streamline repair and maintenance programs by automating the work order process, facilitating preventive maintenance, and providing a wealth of valuable data around facility performance and spend.
Of course, every business has different needs when it comes to facilities management. Before implementing an FM software solution, businesses should consider the following questions:
What are the Types of Facility Management Software?
There are several types of facilities management software on the market today. CAFM software, which stands for Computer-Aided Facility Management, offers administrative capabilities to facilities managers such as tracking, management, planning, and reporting on physical spaces and business locations. CAFM software serves primarily as a database for FM related equipment, spending, and activities, and often includes BIM or CAD functionality.
CMMS (Computerized Maintenance Management Software) is another type of facility management software that contains many of the same features as CAFM software but provides a somewhat deeper look into a company’s maintenance planning and execution. CMMS software may include automated maintenance scheduling and tracking capabilities; it is particularly geared towards preventive maintenance.
How Can FM Software Help Businesses Cut Costs?
Implementing a software platform is one of the fastest ways to reduce facility management spending. Simply moving from an error-prone, inefficient pen-and-paper system to a digitized and automated platform decreases the time and resources that must be dedicated to work order management, allowing teams to instead focus on forward-thinking, preventive measures. Plus, access to advanced analytics makes it easy to pinpoint patterns of overspend and core areas of improvement so that these can be quickly addressed and reversed.
Facility management software also integrates with third-party financial systems to help businesses improve transparency into R&M spending, avoiding the time-consuming process of manual data entry. Businesses can access valuable metrics such as cost per square foot per year, per user, per workplace, per month, and many other relevant reports. This data helps facilities teams identify areas that need improvement and come up with solutions to strategically reduce costs.
Finally, the right software makes it easier for businesses to enact preventive maintenance schedules.
Preventive maintenance saves money by reducing the number of breakdowns and emergency repairs that a business experiences each year, while also preventing warranty leakage and unnecessary equipment replacements. With an automated preventive maintenance schedule in place, assets will last longer, and overall maintenance spending will be greatly reduced.
What is the ROI of Facility Management Software?
Facility management software typically has a strong ROI, especially for multi-location businesses whose facilities programs have previously been run on pen-and-paper. Oftentimes, the savings brought about solely by switching to electronic payment processing (as opposed to manual invoicing) is enough to offset the cost of the software, and then some.
To estimate potential ROI for facilities management software, multiply your total annual maintenance expense by the total annual savings percentage expected as a result of the software implementation. This value represents your total annual efficiency savings. Subtract the cost of the FM software from the total annual efficiency savings to determine total annual ROI savings.