Flexibility in Service Requests Management for CMMS
Many companies still operate without a Computerized Maintenance Management System (CMMS) and rely on emails for handling the service requests. When such a company deploys a CMMS, it is usually a big change for the users who need to abandon their email-based service requests and learn how to log on to a new system for submitting their service requests .
Axxerion has an Integrated Workplace Management System (IWMS/CAFM) with extensive Maintenance Management capabilities. One area that I would like to highlight is the flexibility in handling service requests by accommodating different user approaches in submitting service requests and helping them start using the system without a major initial shock in the approach and without a steep learning curve. Below is a summary of these approaches.
Managing email-based service requests – To accommodate users’ interest in continuing to use email to submit their service requests, Axxerion’s CMMS becomes the recipient of service request emails. The process remains very simple and familiar to the end user. Service requests are emailed to a company mailbox of their choosing – usually the same as it has been before introduction of the CMMS. Service requests mailboxes are usually setup like email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org. Axxerion CMMS can be setup to read such a mailbox. As soon as a new request comes in, Axxerion CMMS picks it up, checks out the sender’s email and finds the requester in the database. It then automatically creates a service ticket from that user to the proper maintenance group and inserts the body of the email in the service ticket. It also picks up any attachments to the email and brings them into the request. After the request is created, it launches the workflow for the service ticket and the work order process. The service ticket workflow is a part of Axxerion CMMS and automatically notifies the maintenance manager or the person assigned to managing requests. The process of handling the services request is then continued in Axxerion CMMS in exactly the same manner as if the user had submitted this request online.
Setting up company Intranet or service portal for submitting service requests – Another approach in making it easier for people to submit their service requests is the integration with the company Intranet or a service portal. Axxerion CMMS can integrate with the company portal in a seamless way which would eliminate the need to log into the CMMS separately. Users usually do not like to log into their own company system for emails, etc. and then log into CMMS separately for their service requests. In Axxerion’s approach, the logging into CMMS is performed behind the scenes by what is called as single sign-on (SSO). Users log into their environment as they are used to for their day to day tasks such as emails and access to company network. Once they are on their company Intranet, there would be a button somewhere in their system for service request. When they click this button, their login information is sent to Axxerion behind the scenes and Axxerion automatically logs them in. It then displays their existing requests and allows them to submit new requests using Axxerion CMMS screens which are embedded in their own Intranet. The whole process is completely integrated with their Intranet and there are no extra steps of logging in or going to another environment for the end user.
The above approaches help in the introduction of a CMMS into a company and preserve the environment and processes that the users are accustomed to. The above approached can both exists as well as direct log into Axxerion CMMS to provide the maximum flexibility in accommodating the users' requirements and interests.
About the author
Mehdi Khalvati, Ph.D. is the president of Axxerion USA. Axxerion's CMMS module addresses corrective, preventive and predicative maintenance as well as asset management. Please send your feedback, thoughts and comments to email@example.com.