Whether you’re in charge of a primary school or a higher education institution, it’s essential that you can co-ordinate a wide range of activities to keep your building operating properly and encourage a clean and safe learning environment. An important part of this is Facilities Management Software, which is vital not just to uphold the maintenance standards of a school, but to improve the quality of the school’s services. Ensuring the efficient coordination of school, materials and staff can maximise the productivity of students, and an excellent physical environment can help to enrich the calibre of the teaching and learning. This article explains the features and benefits of Facilities Management Software for schools.
There are plenty of features of Facilities Management Software that are essential for the coordination of any physical workplace.
By the very nature of being a building filled with kids, it’s likely that regular building maintenance is going to be a big part of facilities management software for schools. Building maintenance software usually provides some kind of maintenance application, sometimes called work order software.
Maintenance management can automate the communication and work status updates for requesters, as well as route requests for approval and assignment. The automation of Facilities Management Solutions simplifies the work order process and reduces the time required to receive, process and complete work orders, which helps to boost efficiency. Maintenance applications can let users submit work directly to you online, which reduces the time spent on phone calls, emails and meetings.
Facilities Management Services improve communication between staff and maintenance teams through automatic email updates and instant online status updates. Teachers can request materials to management through the system, and immediately flag up problems if there is a problem during class. Reporting features provide visibility for school administrators to deliver the maintenance department’s workload and budget requirements by showing documentation of costs and work hours in order to justify requests of additional resources.
Planning is another vital part of maintenance management, particularly as budget cuts mean that school resources are becoming more limited. Planning helps you to budget with more accurate documentation of your institution’s needs. Maintenance applications also let you schedule preventative maintenance on a daily, weekly, monthly or annual basis. This guarantees that your building systems work effectively and in good condition, which reduces the frequency and seriousness of breakdowns, and saves on unnecessary expenditure for repairing them. Preventative maintenance helps building and facility systems last for longer. Some Facilities Management systems offer facility condition assessment as well, which aids institutions in assessing the physical condition of their buildings.
Schools need to track their assets, whether it’s furniture, computer systems or gym equipment. This includes where they’re located, which departments use them, how frequently they’re used and when they need to be repaired or replaced. Asset management lets institutions understand how to enhance the use and deployment of assets, which reduces costs. Knowing what assets you have with their location prevents the possibility of spending money on equipment your organisation already has. You can also be told if you are spending money on other software you aren’t using. Knowing where all your assets are prevents the need for annual asset audits as well. As all of your assets are listed in an easily accessible format, making a quick, accurate insurance claim is made much easier in the event of a large-scale fire or theft.
Facilities Management Systems provide easy access to the school schedule for teachers and students. The schedule can be easily changed by senior staff, and automatic electronic notes can be sent to everyone on the contact list stored in the system. The system can also track bus schedules, so if a bus is running late, a note can be automatically generated and sent out to parents.
The school’s database can easily be altered to reflect changes in attendance, so that an absent student’s teachers can automatically be notified. Attendance reports can be quickly entered and stored into the database as well.
Facilities Management Software can manage a database of library books and information on who has checked them out, for the benefit of school administrators. The households of students can be easily contacted if they have overdue books.
Safety protocols can be saved on the system so they can be accessed in an emergency, and let teachers stay in touch with main personnel. The system can also store information on the medical needs of students and can easily alert the authorities on any medical emergencies.
Cafeteria managers can use the system to plan menus and request the supplies that they need and maintenance repair and replacement. Electronic copies of every transaction can be saved for review.
Space management features assist schools in enhancing the use of physical space in their buildings. This involves providing complete real-time information charting how a space is used, which assets and staff are in the space, and how they are positioned. This helps to avoid leasing or purchasing additional unnecessary space. Many space management applications integrate with CAD or BIM files so that users can view the data in a more easily visualised floor plan instead of just a data sheet.