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K-12 Workflow Management Blog

Top Facility Management Software for K-12 Schools

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When it comes to creating a safe and comfortable space for students to learn, there are many important things to get right. Facility management underpins all these efforts with a broad range of maintenance and management tasks designed to keep school facilities, technology, and equipment in tip-top condition.

Keeping these activities running smoothly can be tedious and complex at the best of times. Without the right systems, managing maintenance tasks and functional repairs can feel like trying to drink through a fire hose.

The good news is that there are solutions available. With the right computerized maintenance management system (CMMS), facility managers can streamline and optimize their workflows for assigning and completing maintenance tasks. To help you identify a solution for your school, we’ve compiled this comprehensive guide on K-12 facility management software.

Keep scrolling to learn about these software systems, the top features to look for, and five of the best facility management software options on the market today!

What is Facility Management Software?

A facility management software solution helps organizations manage the upkeep and maintenance of their facilities. These programs’ functionality can be particularly beneficial for K-12 schools and school districts, which must manage the maintenance of various assets, including school buildings, technology, and other equipment.

CMMS software plays a critical role in supporting facility managers by streamlining the organization of maintenance schedules and offering insights that can lead to cost savings and improved productivity for maintenance staff. A good CMMS also acts as a centralized platform for team communication, assignment of routine maintenance tasks, and workflow management for larger projects, significantly reducing the time spent on administrative tasks and ensuring no important tasks get overlooked.

With the right facility management system, schools can leverage automation features to programmatically assign tasks to the right person for the job and then track the project’s progress through to completion. The result is a much more streamlined, organized, and efficient approach to facility maintenance management.

Using a CMMS to optimize your approach to facility management can help improve school safety, reduce maintenance expenses, and ensure that maintenance operations align with overall institutional goals. These systems also include functionality to complete detailed performance assessments. These audits can provide insightful metrics that lead to improved workplace management, boosting overall productivity and often creating significant cost savings.

Features to Look for in K-12 Facilities Management Software

Selecting the right FM software involves more than a quick price and feature comparison. Understanding your school or district’s unique needs is crucial to evaluating whether a particular facility management system fits the bill. However, there are some key general features to prioritize when choosing K-12 facilities management software:

Facility Maintenance Management

The right FM software solution will help you optimize your school facility management to ensure that all routine maintenance tasks are handled efficiently. Properly managing the repair and upkeep of school buildings and facilities extends the lifespan of these assets and contributes to a safe, disruption-free learning environment for students and staff.

Look for a CMMS that includes tools for scheduling maintenance activities, tracking work orders, and monitoring maintenance history. Leveraging these capabilities can help you streamline and organize your facility management tasks to increase efficiency, reduce maintenance costs, and avoid surprise repairs to critical school facilities and assets.

Asset Management

Asset management is one of the top facility management goals for school leaders. It’s crucial to track and manage all the physical equipment within a school district, from complex HVAC and electrical systems to classroom furniture, technology, and school buildings themselves.

The software solution you choose should offer features for maintaining accurate asset inventory, tracking critical asset location, assessing asset condition, planning for replacements or upgrades, and managing depreciation. This information will make it easy to prioritize your budget so that the most urgent needs can be addressed first.

Preventive Maintenance

Preventive maintenance refers to routine equipment upkeep that can help identify and prevent pricey failures before they occur. This is particularly important in schools, where a disruption to your facilities usually disrupts students’ education. With the right FM software, you can schedule routine maintenance tasks based on predefined intervals or asset condition thresholds, allowing staff to appropriately prioritize their workload and ensure all facilities remain safe and functional.

Of course, school buildings can surprise even the most organized maintenance teams, so look for software that offers automated reminders and notifications to help your staff get back on track after major issues.

Compliance Management

Schools must adhere to a wide range of standards and regulations designed to ensure the safety and well-being of students and staff. Failing to meet these standards can have significant consequences.

To help you avoid fines, penalties, or legal issues from regulatory violations, choose a software solution offering compliance management features. Key features and functionality include monitoring compliance with building codes, health and safety regulations, ADA accessibility standards, and environmental regulations. By automatically tracking compliance management, these features will help prevent noncompliance and take much of the hassle out of the process.

Inventory Management

Keeping school facilities safe, compliant, and optimized for learning requires a lot of different products. Effective inventory management helps K-12 facilities managers track materials and supplies needed for maintenance and operations without overstocking and tying up capital, which can lead to cost savings and efficiency improvements.

It also ensures that necessary materials are on hand when needed, which can reduce delays in addressing urgent issues in your district – nobody wants to be caught waiting for a specialized part when the school’s boiler is about to fizzle out. Monitoring inventory levels of products that need to be replaced and replenished regularly, like paper, hand sanitizer, and other classroom supplies, can also lead to cost savings through efficiency.

Be sure to look for facility management software that provides tools for tracking inventory levels, managing procurement processes, and generating purchase orders. This will help increase transparency and streamline inventory management through data-driven purchase decision-making.

Task Automation

Automating routine manual tasks can save time and reduce errors, helping you improve efficiency, cut costs, and free up your facility maintenance management staff for more pressing concerns. A CMMS with strong task automation functionality can help with repetitive tasks like scheduling maintenance, work order generation, sending out timely notifications for project-specific tasks and general repairs, and communicating status updates to requestors and stakeholders.

Automated Workflows

Choosing a software solution that supports creating customized, automated workflows will help streamline and optimize your facility maintenance management.

Automated workflows ensure that maintenance staff consistently and promptly carry out tasks. They can also help assign tasks to appropriate personnel, escalate specific issues or requests for review and approval, and ensure that nothing gets overlooked, which is particularly valuable in large, interdependent operations like school districts.

If you’ve ever found your team facing a major maintenance issue that was missed because your team was confused about who was supposed to do what, then you know the value of clearly defined roles and responsibilities on a maintenance team. Workflows help eliminate ambiguity in task ownership and facilitate collaboration to yield better outcomes.

Easy Work Order Management

Work orders need to be carefully managed from the initial request to completion. Choose FM software with intuitive work order management features to simplify creating, managing, and tracking work orders. With the right facility management software solution, you can address repairs promptly and efficiently, improve maintenance staff response times, and minimize facilities or equipment downtime.

For even more time-saving convenience, look for a solution that offers mobile accessibility. This feature allows maintenance managers and staff to access and update work orders in real-time from any location.

Each of these features provides essential functionality for better managing educational institutions’ complex, dynamic environments. By leveraging facility management software with these capabilities, you can add layers of efficiency, safety, and compliance to your maintenance operations, significantly enhancing your team’s capabilities and providing a better educational environment for students, teachers, and staff.

5 Best Facility Management Software

Now that you know what to look for in computer-aided facility management software, it’s time to begin your search in earnest. Depending on your school or district’s specific goals for implementing FM software, there are many great options to choose from.

Below, we’ve outlined the five best CMMS solutions to consider, including an overview of each one’s pricing and top features.

1. Incident IQ

Top Features:

  • Comprehensive incident management tools
  • Asset and inventory tracking
  • Preventive maintenance scheduling
  • Task automation and workflow optimization
  • Customizable, actionable reporting and analytics

Pricing: Tailored quotes provided based on users’ needs.

Incident IQ is the best facility management software for K-12 schools because it was built specifically to support and streamline K-12 facility management workflows. While this software is designed for ease of use, Incident IQ’s support team is comprised of education industry veterans who understand the unique challenges posed by K-12 facilities management—so those needing extra assistance are in capable hands.

Purpose-built to streamline and organize facility operations, Incident IQ can also help with preventive maintenance planning, compliance management, cloud based inventory and asset management, task and workflow automation, and more. Facilities managers can also check out the apps and integrations catalog, which features over 100 ways to extend Incident IQ’s already robust functionality, including remote desktop and data sync with student information systems.

Incident IQ also supports a wide range of other essential K-12 functions, including event management, help desk ticketing, and HR service delivery, making it a well-rounded and versatile choice for K-12 schools and districts of all sizes looking to optimize their operations.

2. MaintainX

Top Features:

  • Intuitive work order management system
  • Mobile accessibility for on-the-go maintenance tasks
  • Checklists and forms for inspections and audits
  • Real-time communication and collaboration tools
  • Robust reporting capabilities

Pricing: Pricing starts at $10 per user per month, with custom enterprise plans available upon request.

MaintainX is a popular facility management solution with a robust list of use cases. Its intuitive work order management system makes tracking and coordinating maintenance requests easy, while mobile accessibility features mean technicians can access and update work orders on the go.

MaintainX can fall short for K-12 facilities managers in some spots. While it can be adapted for K-12 use, MaintainX was designed for a broad range of industries, from manufacturing to hospitality, healthcare, and property management. As a result, it does not have built-in modules or other key features specifically designed for K-12 users.

Some users also found communicating with stakeholders, vendors, and service providers challenging, as all messaging occurred within the app. Other communication issues include ticket requestors’ inability to see why repair requests are rejected.

3. Maintenance Care

Top Features:

  • Robust preventive maintenance capabilities
  • Work order management and tracking
  • Inventory management and procurement
  • Vendor management and contractor tracking
  • Customizable reporting and analytics

Pricing: A free plan is available for basic functionality, with paid plans starting at $30 per user per month.

Maintenance Care excels at preventive maintenance scheduling, offering tools for managing routine maintenance tasks. It also offers features for inventory management, vendor tracking, and robust reporting options, like customizable dashboards that put all of your maintenance KPIs and data in one easy-to-access place.

However, like MaintainX, Maintenance Care is not designed specifically for K-12 schools. Its feature set is necessarily broad to serve customers in multiple industries, from golf to senior care and manufacturing. Again, it is possible to customize Maintenance Care for K-12 uses, but doing so can delay implementation and increase costs.

Users also mentioned issues with the customer/requestor interface, inconsistent updates and notifications, and a steep learning curve for the reporting features.

4. AkitaBox

Top Features:

  • Web based facility asset management and tracking
  • Interactive floor plans and space utilization analysis
  • Maintenance scheduling and resource allocation
  • Compliance management and regulatory tracking
  • Integration with IoT devices for real-time monitoring

Pricing: Custom pricing is available upon request.

Rather than managing maintenance tasks, AkitaBox focuses primarily on equipment and asset management optimization. It offers tools to transform paper floor plans into interactive maps and pin assets within the map. Users can also analyze space utilization to maximize available storage.

While AkitaBox does offer a maintenance management system, this feature is secondary to its focus on facility and asset optimization. As a result, it doesn’t feel as advanced as other FM solutions. Like other solutions on this list, AkitaBox is not specifically tailored to K-12 use, which can lead to challenges during implementation. Users also mentioned issues with the AkitaBox mobile app and tech support responsiveness, and some pointed out that the pin system contributes to issues when attempting to find out more information about equipment after a ticket has been submitted.

5. ARC Facilities

Top Features:

  • Building information modeling (BIM) integration
  • Space management and optimization tools
  • Capital planning and budgeting features
  • Energy management and sustainability tracking
  • Mobile access to facilities management for field technicians

Pricing: Custom pricing is available upon request.

ARC Facilities’ main selling point is its building information modeling (BIM) integration. With this platform, you can give everyone on your maintenance team access to thousands of drawings, O&M documentation, and emergency or safety information on their mobile devices. ARC Facilities also offers several other helpful features, such as school facility maintenance software, including capital planning and budgeting features, energy usage tracking, and space optimization tools.

However, it is not specifically tailored to K-12 use cases. In addition, the custom price model can be challenging to evaluate alongside other solutions. Reviewers also noted that, although the platform is intuitive, users have a considerable learning curve before effectively leveraging all its features. A limited number of pre-defined templates can also require additional time for customization following implementation.

How Incident IQ Can Help

From asset tracking to detailed forecasting to automated maintenance workflows, Incident IQ’s maintenance management software offers a comprehensive range of powerful capabilities to K-12 schools. These key features are designed to help you improve your school’s operational efficiency, occupancy, maintenance request management, maintenance team management, and more. With Incident IQ, you can be confident that all your facility management needs are covered.

While many great facility management software options are available today, only one maintenance management system is built specifically for K-12 schools. Offering automated workflows, compliance tracking features, inventory management tools, and other management features built with K-12 schools in mind, Incident IQ is the perfect solution for any school looking to streamline maintenance requests and improve its facility management processes.

Check out what Cherry Creek School District did to improve facilities maintenance efficiency with Incident IQ. Then, to learn more about how Incident IQ can help you improve facility management at your school, contact the Incident IQ team today for a free demo!