What is a Work Order in Facility Management?

Work Orders and their Role in Facility Management

In a previous blog, we discussed how Computerized Maintenance Management Systems (CMMS) such as Trillium help Facility Managers plan and execute their work orders and optimize their asset management programs.  However, if you are new to Facility Management (FM) or don’t typically use work orders in your process, you may not fully appreciate why they are considered a best practice in FM.  Today, we will dive deeper into what work orders contain, who uses them, why they are important, and briefly review the benefits of CMMS.

What is a Work Order and what does it contain? 

Facility managers are responsible for taking care of their facilities to support the businesses that are housed within them while minimizing cost and downtime.  They do this by carrying out preventative and reactive maintenance work in order to ensure that the systems within their facilities remain operational and in optimal condition.  Work orders can be paper or electronic documents, and they are the primary way that many organizations request maintenance work to be done, schedule when it will occur, ensure that adequate resources are available to complete it, and maintain records of what was done. 

The essential elements of a work order include:

  • A clear description of the task(s) to be done

  • The precise location of where the work is to be done

  • An identification of the person or group who is requesting and/or authorizing the work

  • Deadlines or timing for the work to be completed

  • A list of resources needed to complete the job, such as parts, safety procedures such as confined-space lockouts, special tools or equipment needed, etc.

Who uses Work Orders

Many different groups inside and outside an organization use work orders for various reasons, including the following:

  • Facility Managers use Work Orders to schedule and track the work and to ensure that the work is done properly and on time.  They also use work orders to track the overall performance of their FM organization and answer questions such as “what percentage of our preventative maintenance work orders are getting done on time?”  In highly-effective programs, that number is close to 100%.

  • Contractors who perform the work use Work Orders to determine whether the job is in their area of expertise, whether / when they can fit it in their schedule, and which specialized personnel and other resources will need to be available to successfully complete the work.

  • Accounts Payable may use work orders to compare charges for work performed to what was requested prior to authorizing payment.

  • Financial Controllers may use work orders to allocate cost to departments and/or track whether FM is under or over budget, or to determine whether the work should be accounted for as capital or operating expense.

Let Trillium make managing Work Orders easy and intuitive

If your organization currently uses Work Orders, how is your system working for you?  Does your organization stay on top of each day’s “to-do” list and keep equipment operating at optimal levels? Is information about your work orders available at your fingertips so you can make informed business decisions?  If the answer is no, or if you don’t use Work Orders but want to talk about how you can get started, we can help.

Trillium’s work order software and experienced team help organizations manage, monitor, and control maintenance including: equipment, resources, and regulatory compliance. Let us handle your facility and work order management needs and help your organization save time and money. Interested to see how easy facilities can be?  Sign up for a Demo or email us at sales@trilliumfacility.com.

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