Five Must-Ask Questions About Maintenance Management Solutions

What is CMMS?

CMMS stands for computerized maintenance management software. It helps facility and maintenance managers streamline work orders, inventory management, asset monitoring, preventive maintenance scheduling, and other asset maintenance activities. It can help with a range of internal maintenance and optimization tasks to make your business more efficient and organized.

CMMS is also called enterprise asset management (EAM), computer-aided facility management (CAFM) or facilities management (FM), although there are some slight differences between those terms. It’s often confused with field service software, but the latter focuses on managing on-the-go operations and client equipment.


Cloud-based or On-premise CMMS?

Cloud or web-based software refers to SaaS (software as a service) systems that are hosted by a third party in the cloud. Users can access these services through the internet. The other options for deployment are on-premise and hybrid deployment. On-premise solutions are installed on hardware (i.e., servers) maintained within your organization’s premises and require an extensive IT team to maintain, secure and operate it.

Although on-premise CMMS solutions are great pieces of software, they often lack some of the functionality of their cloud computing counterparts. In addition, you can avoid the many logistical hurdles presented by on-premise CMMS by implementing a cloud-based one. Hybrid solutions combine features from both types of systems and are more unusual.

Five Must-Ask Questions About Maintenance Management Solutions


What are the advantages of a cloud-based CMMS?

The advantages of computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) software are well-documented in thousands of maintenance books and Internet articles. However, the benefits of cloud-based CMMS over traditional on-premise systems are less well-known. Cloud or hosted software means the software is available over the Internet, whereas on-premise software is downloaded and installed on local computers or servers.

Cloud CMMS applications offer the same level of functionality as traditional on-premise systems but with a number of additional benefits. For instance:

  • A cloud-based CMMS allows mobile connectivity
  • Authorized users have access anywhere, any time
  • Server operations are more efficient
  • Faster setup and implementation is possible
  • IT costs are significantly reduced or even eliminated


Why a CMMS cannot be a one-size-fits-all software?

Any CMMS, at its core, is a collection of applications that perform tasks. Each company has its own unique requirements for daily procedures, based on several different factors.

Unfortunately, a one-size-fits-all CMMS software is rarely sufficiently reliable because the applications are simply not designed keeping in mind individual, organizational requirements. Some applications may not be suited to handle the unique needs of an organization at all, and even those that may be are unlikely to cover all your core business processes and will, therefore, be fragmented and inefficient. Ultimately, it’s a case of wasted resources, time and money. We’d go so far as to say continued reliance on a one-size-fits-all CMMS can be very bad for business.

A generic CMMS can restrict your organization’s workflow and slow down growth and innovation. Problems can surface when it’s time to scale up and diversify. A tool offering a blanket solution is rigid and hampers progress because it cannot support the agility most businesses need to help them grow.

Five Must-Ask Questions About Maintenance Management Solutions


What are the advantages of an industry-specific CMMS?

There is no “one-size-fits-all” process for maintenance organizations—and for good reason. How your team may organize daily procedures and reporting may well assist in contributing to your company’s competitive advantage.

  • An industry-specific CMMS is more likely to accomplish a task using fewer resources and in less time than a -one-size-fits-all tool.
  • It will also require little or no customization before it can be deployed.
  • When your organization grows, an industry-specific solution will be able to handle changes with greater efficiency. This makes your job easier and less time-consuming.

In comparison, a generic CMMS can slow your organization down to a crawl. Sometimes, even when it’s tailored to your requirements, the heavy customization in itself can become a bottleneck.