NATIONAL REPORT—No engineer will dispute the connection between preventive maintenance (PM) and energy efficiency. Ask a roomful of engineers the best way to conduct PM, however, and you may get a wide variety of answers. Fortunately for hotel owners and operators, there are myriad automated systems available that help ensure that proper PM gets done, and that energy and profits do not disappear into thin air. The following are descriptions of a few PM system vendors and their solutions.
Dunedin, Fla.-based Mintek Mobile Data Solutions’ WinTrack PM system incorporates mobile devices and bar coding to help engineers perform PM and capture work accurately. WinTrack PM ensures maintenance is getting done, standardizes maintenance task lists and helps managers better forecast staffing requirements.
“WinTrack PM enables hotel engineers to plan, track and analyze preventive maintenance, work orders and asset management,” says Mark Sokol, director of product marketing for Mintek, which has more than 275 hotel installations. “Instead of writing notes in notebooks, engineers use handheld scanning devices that read bar codes on or near equipment. Because every PM check prompts the same instructions no matter who is doing it, the chance of a PM being improperly done is eliminated. Our system is also used for rounds and room PMs.”
Mintek’s Maintenace Portal provides a Web-based, centralized reporting tool that allows regional or corporate managers to review, oversee and respond to maintenance issues at multiple properties around the world. The system also ensures standardized maintenance setup across multiple properties. Sokol says each of his company’s systems streamline manual processes, add accountability to work flow, and improve guest intent-to-return rates.
“By implementing an effective PM program, you can be sure that your energy costs will be kept in check, the life span of your valuable equipment will be extended, labor and repair costs will be minimized and work orders will be closed in time,” Sokol says.
GuestWare’s Guestroom System
Diversified Computer Corp. (DCC), Seattle, is the maker of GuestWare, which features a Facilities Maintenance component. GuestWare, says Mike Benjamin, vice president of DCC, provides an efficient way to plan, record and analyze the maintenance of hotel guestrooms. It installs with a room preventive maintenance check list. The check list defines when a room is due for PM and the tasks to be accomplished. After a room PM and inspection has been conducted, results are logged into GuestWare.
“Management summary reports ensure room PM is being done on schedule,” Benjamin says. “Reports also show those rooms that are past due for maintenance. Graphs can show defect counts by a specific room attribute, time period or section of a hotel. Without routine guestroom PMs, items such as clogged PTAC filters can reduce energy efficiency.”
GuestWare’s Work Orders System provides the ability to enter, print, monitor and close work orders quickly and efficiently. GuestWare automatically tracks response time and provides a follow-up feature to monitor unfinished assignments. A work order summary report shows what percentage of work orders were closed within the hotel’s priority goal.
M-Tech, Miami, Fla., offers PMWorks, powered by HotSOS. The system is used by 750 hotels. Using Web-based PMWorks, a hotel can inventory equipment, create a custom PM calendar, view, update and close work orders. Upper level managers have the ability to review a property’s performance online.
“PMWorks requires no added equipment at the property,” says Clyde Edson, M-Tech’s national account manager. “An e-mail account and a Web browser are all that is needed, and the engineer can actually use a phone to clear out work orders. The service takes about two hours to set up and delivers an in-depth PM program that even includes reminders for fire, safety and other compliance items.”
Glenn Hasek can be reached at email@example.com.