What Is CAFM, and How Does It Benefit Facility Managers?
- CAFM or computer-aided facility management refers to software that helps facilities managers organize and fulfil their everyday responsibilities
- The demand for CAFM software is increasing, particularly in hospitals where patient caretakers or nurses get automatic alerts when a bed is available for new patients, eliminating a manual process and speeding up patient care
- CAFM can also be integrated with other software applications to improve operational efficiency
Facilities have long relied on time-consuming manual processes.
Constant complaints, excessive paperwork, difficulty in gauging operational costs and other critical information, operational losses due to inefficient processes, equipment breakdowns and poor space and asset utilization.
The good news is many businesses are now leveraging technology to counter these challenges and make life simpler for facilities teams.
What is CAFM?
Computer-aided facility management (CAFM) is a growing area of information technology that allows businesses to move essential logistical tasks into the digital space through business continuity and facility management software.
From the day-to-day management of desk space and conference rooms to big-picture analysis of whether current office space is meeting an organization’s business plans, CAFM systems provide the ideal next-gen tech solution to an old problem. The right CAFM solution can revolutionize everything — employee morale, decision-making when it’s time to upgrade to a new office space, as well as preventive maintenance management.
CAFM is invaluable for solving the conundrum of finance, HR, management and logistical physical concerns.
Companies are even starting to hire CAFM administrators to take care of the procedural details so facility managers can stay focused on the big picture and plan accordingly.
Benefits of CAFM software for facility managers
Cost control and optimal use of resources
Controlling costs and using resources optimally is the key function of any CAFM software. Both aspects are critical to the success of an organization, and in the present environment of cutthroat competition, facility managers need to devise new ways to save money and other resources without compromising on quality service and productivity.
To meet these requirements, a CAFM software is designed to streamline the building and equipment maintenance procedures, inspections, and monitoring and tracking of all the processes and workforce on site to achieve optimal performance. In addition, it provides managers with critical data on processes and systems along with updates on service delivery and performance of employees.
CAFM software should specifically address the needs of implementing automation, open communication and effective monitoring and tracking to achieve cost control and optimal use of resources.
The need to deal with multiple issues simultaneously leaves facility managers little time to prioritize and formulate strategy. Managing budgets, dealing with vendors, monitoring workforce and tracking the execution of various service requests and documentation are some of the tasks that need to be done daily, with consistent quality and timely execution.
CAFM software helps managers optimally utilize their time in planning and prioritizing tasks. Coordinating teams and workloads, maintaining great customer service and monitoring compliance and performance levels by automating processes associated with all these requirements are key benefits of CAFM software.
Improved workforce engagement and collaboration
For facility managers, handling a diverse workforce on site, monitoring their performance and developing systems that increase their engagement, productivity and collaboration is crucial.
This can be accomplished by deploying a technology that is easy to use, supports execution of critical tasks in a timely manner, and enables effective communication and collaboration with other team members and higher management.
The ability to operate seamlessly in a mobile environment, particularly when internet connectivity is not available, and dealing with other physical and environmental constraints is necessary for all facility management personnel.
CAFM software delivers all these functionalities, which is why it is so relevant in the market.
What businesses should consider before implementing CAFM software
As CAFM solutions vary in design, capabilities and features, it is important that a business first defines the goals and provides representation for the team that will be running the CAFM solution. It is also important that all information is input so that there is no inconsistent or missing data that could interfere with the potential of the CAFM system.
A web-accessible front end makes the CAFM process more efficient, enabling the business to share real-time data with users at multiple locations.
Looking to the future is important when implementing any CAFM system. Businesses may set up CAFM so that they can utilize space management functions and then later add asset management. The network should also have sufficient speed to transport all the data without compromising the database.
The integration of CAFM software provides a business with several advantages concerning maintenance management that may not even be fully realized until it is completely implemented. CAFM systems must be selected as per the company’s needs and rolled out in a managed environment to ensure users are properly trained on processes. There should also be specific expectations placed on management concerning the different responsibilities that will be outlined when using a CAFM solution.
CAFM systems can improve workplace management and productivity, as well as space planning and management, financial control, security management, real estate and property management and project management. Given these numerous advantages, enterprises should seriously consider implementing CAFM solutions to maximize operational efficiency.