According to studies, maintenance of some facilities account for more than 80% of their annual budget. That’s a significant amount, yet poor management is still a common problem and can quickly drive up those costs. And, no two medical facilities are the same. They are created in different settings and different styles from enclosed rented offices in a large building to miles wide sites. Additionally, each facility has unique attributes and this can make management challenging.
Without a work order management tool by their side, it’s easy for facility managers to get overwhelmed.
So, how do you know when it’s time to update your property facility management procedures and processes? Here are 5 ways that work order management software can help medical facility managers do more with less.
1. A Strong Process Encourages Good Habits
When you start your projects off on the right foot, you ensure that the work gets done and will be completed on time. Good habits start at the beginning of your process, and an efficient work order management system requires a work order for every project. If you start to slip and think that projects are too small for a work order, your entire process will break down right there.
As your staff gets busy with patients, they’ll want to override protocol and skip steps to get the job done. While they might think this will get the job done quickly, they’re dead wrong. When everyone is using the same standardized system, trying to cut corners could slow everything down.
A small and simple job at your medical facility might even get lost in the mix if they don’t write up a proper work order. Even though just changing a light bulb is a small issue, if you don’t use the same cohesive system, your employees will find the whole system unreliable.
2. Categorize Your Workflow
The type of work order that’s filled out will determine what kind of work gets done. Having descriptive categories laid out will allow everyone to know what kind of work to request. The more specific the request, the easier it will be for your team to communicate.
Printing out a form with 20 different categories with multiple sub-categories will be a pain in the neck. A drop-down menu that is easy to set up in software could make everything easier. Setting up a work order system that allows for all types of categories is much simpler when using sound software versus paper forms.
Selecting the right category determines how efficient the process will be. A series of metrics and analysis will follow each event at your medical facility. This will let you know how well your process is working. It really depends on creating defined workflows for different job types that need to be completed throughout any medical facility.
3. Approval Process Should Be Required
Before you commit resources to any project or issue, your orders should be seen by some kind of supervisor. Even if it’s simply two people at the same level as the person requesting the order, it’s crucial that everything passes several sets of eyes.
Before any order is assigned to anyone and executed, there needs to be some oversight.
Approval should be contingent on having the appropriate amount of information filled out. It should be clear to the people reading the work order what needs to be done, meaning it will be clear to the person assigned the work. The budget and any safety concerns should be addressed before the work is assigned to anyone.
Once it’s approved, the person at your medical facility who needs the work done should be updated. Your software should keep your end users in the loop so that they know when a change has been made to the status of their orders.
4. Base Assignments On Priority Needs
There should be a part of your review process where you’re allowed to assess the urgency of any task. When access is given in a fair manner, fewer people will make mistakes, errors in judgment, choices that cause other projects to delay.
Work order management software creates a more intelligent system to allow you to determine which users can make the call to have something done urgently. Specific groups of users should be allowed access based on a specific categorization. They’ll be the only people who can determine that a project has an extreme amount of urgency.
End users should be allowed access comment sections and an area to see updates. They shouldn’t be able to modify any of the core concerns of the work order without some authorization.
When you assign roles based on need and expertise, you can ensure no serious mistakes are made. Priority should encourage efficiency, not hamper it. When you have standard prioritization rules, no one will be able to give their request a higher priority than it should have.
Any work order then will remove risks of injury or loss of assets will be given immediate attention, with the guidance of a supervisor. Otherwise, those everyday requests for replacing toilet paper or organizing a broom closet at your medical facility can be fixed later.
5. Managing Your Schedule is Essential
Scheduling is one of the reasons for using the software in the first place. It can be frustrating to try to juggle several major issues at once. With the help of software, your priorities can be filtered for you without having to worry about looking at the details.
A medical facility manager is constantly being inundated with problems and issues to be resolved. There’s a persistent problem of overscheduling that comes with the job. Facility management software can make the job of a medical facility manager much easier by ordering and organizing problems in a manageable way.
Work Order Management is a Full-Time Job
Without the help of robust software to lead the way, work order management can be a daunting task for facility managers. Medical facility management is about more than creating a comfortable environment. It also creates an environment that encourages health and wellness or allows researchers to keep their research from being contaminated.