The key to survival for a nonprofit organization is controlling and maintaining costs. The challenge of getting enough funding to continue pursuing a philanthropic mission while simultaneously paying for all of the costs of running even the leanest and most effective business is difficult enough But add to that having to contend with cost overages, missed deadlines, regulatory problems and simple waste and the difficulty only increases.
In the past, the process of controlling costs was both labor and management intensive and required practical record keeping that was simply beyond the means of most organizations, even if they had the manpower and resources. Now, with advanced software, the ability to perform seamless and detail oriented cost control is within reach.
If you are planning to integrate Computerized Maintenance Management System (CMMS) software into your strategy for monitoring and controlling costs, here are some things to consider:
Avoiding Time-Based Extra Costs
There is little that is more expensive in business than being late. Time is money, especially in the nonprofit sector.. Like project management software, CMMS software is designed from the ground up to help organizations and their management avoid unnecessary costs from scheduling conflicts, missed payments, missed appointments, and regulatory hassles caused by filing mistakes and permit expirations.
Every extra cost paid by a nonprofit organization is money taken directly from its mission. There is little to be gained by failing to integrate the kinds of cost-savings that can be obtained through optimizing all the needs of an entity because the initial costs of migrating from one system to another seem too high. The fact is that money spent today on these types of solutions will save three- and four-to-one expenditures tomorrow.
Uncovering New Opportunities
It has often been said the most formidable challenge in combat is knowing what is happening on the battlefield. The military calls this “battlespace awareness.” In business, and especially in an organization with limited means, awareness is crucial. When management can get a general view of what is happening, and can combine that information with a detailed view of areas that need attention and optimization, it can often lead to discoveries that result in cost savings, better products and services, and faster performance.
CMMS software is the kind of tool that can help management see opportunities they might otherwise miss. Even though it might seem that computerizing a series of maintenance payments, for example, wouldn’t be all that useful, the reality is that patterns develop in data and those patterns can lead to the kind of “a-ha!” moment that saves both time and money in the long-term.
Properly utilized, CMMS software can also give management the kind of awareness they need to make long-term plans, execute those plans, and evaluate the results. Without the right kind of data, maintenance of facilities, equipment, offices, and projects can sometimes hide unnecessary costs. This is among the most important reasons a tool like CMMS software is so vital. When used strategically alongside accounting and record-keeping software, maintenance systems give management a platform from which they can set efficient and effective long-term goals.
Part of the integration process involves taking existing data and extrapolating the expected results of savings CMMS software can help ensure. This is one of the key mechanisms in producing an accurate budget, avoiding overspending or underspending on important projects and creating unnecessary friction in an organization through missed projections, unrealistic expectations, and cash flow issues. In a nonprofit, where every expense counts, the ability to accurately project expenses against expected income is not only vital to the organization, it is the only mechanism through which the company’s mission can be achieved.
CMMS Software Benefits
- Helps avoid unnecessary extra costs
- Identifies optimization opportunities
- Facilitates effective long-term planning
The keyword when evaluating CMMS is proactive. Maintenance gets more expensive and has greater negative impact when the organization must react to a problem rather than prevent it from happening in the first place. The best comparative example of this is car maintenance. It is a lot easier and less expensive to change the oil in your vehicle regularly than it is to do no regular upkeep and replace your entire engine. If the car reminds the driver an oil change is due, it just might be saving that driver the cost of an expensive repair.
Every increase in efficiency is preceded by an optional cost. Far too often, the perceived victory of avoiding that initial cost is wiped out by a far more expensive event down the road. This is exactly the type of problem CMMS software is designed to nonprofit organizations avoid. Purchasing and integrating a CMMS software solution will keep operations running smoothly and efficiently while keeping unnecessary costs at bay.