What Is School Facility Management Software?
School facility management software is a platform used by school Facilities Managers and their teams to streamline workflows and complete work orders more efficiently. It’s really that simple. Unfortunately, the work of school facilities teams is not.
K-12 facility managers and technicians have to be on call and ready to respond to emergency repairs, plan out time for regular maintenance, and stay flexible when they get stopped in the hallway by admins and staff. Their workload quickly piles up. So how does school facility management software help fill in the gap?
Within school facility management software, managers and technicians can:
- Automate their work order requests by type, location, priority, and more
- Schedule preventative maintenance throughout the school year
- Track the cost of parts and outsourced labor
- Generate detailed workflow reports on team response times, work order completion times, the number of incoming and completed work orders, and more
School facility teams don’t have enough time in the day to be pushing paper and managing spreadsheets. That’s why facility management software is critical. It helps them quickly knock out their administrative tasks and spend more time on the work that matters: keeping school facilities safe and operational for teachers, students, and staff.
How does it help school facility managers?
School Facility Managers are under the constant pressure of maintaining high standards across all the facilities in their school or district. So when something goes wrong or needs repairs, all eyes are on them.
Here’s the problem: unless you’re a relatively small district, Facility Managers don’t have the time to get their hands on every work order that comes across their desk. They’re usually too busy:
- Ensuring the facilities are maintained up to district standards
- Handling general accounting tasks, such as costs of parts needed for repairs, payroll, and budgeting
- Managing and reviewing service contracts
- Forecasting, allocating, and supervising the financial and physical resources of the facility management team
School facility management software lets them get back to what’s important. Managers can quickly view workflow reports to see the general status of all the work orders in their district. Or, if they need more immediate insights, they can quickly group work orders with custom filtering tools.
This level of visibility allows facility managers to delegate tasks quickly, prioritize important repairs, and easily report back to district leadership.
And, arguably the most important benefit, managers will have confidence knowing that their teams are fully equipped to tackle any and all repairs, inspections, or maintenance requests that come their way.
How does it help school maintenance workers and technicians?
What’s the first thing people notice when they walk on a school campus?
The flags, the buildings, the smell of the hallways, the shine of the floors—they’re all important. A well-kept and beautiful campus represents the standards of a school district. It’s the first impression teachers, parents, and students get when they walk through the front doors.
But school facilities don’t stay that way on accident. When something goes wrong, breaks down, or needs repair, school maintenance workers and technicians are vital—so it only makes sense that they’re equipped with the right tools for the job (and we don’t just mean the physical tasks).
School facility management software allows maintenance workers and technicians to easily locate, organize, and prioritize individual work orders, so they can finish all their projects according to plan.
It also helps eliminate drive-by requests and last-minute updates. Tired of being stopped in the hallway? Tell staff members to submit an official work order. Need to update your manager on the status of your repairs? Quickly set up an online chat or hand them a workflow report.
What if my district outsources labor for maintenance and technical repairs?
This isn’t uncommon. For medium and smaller-sized districts, a full-time facilities team isn’t always the answer. Sometimes, it’s much easier (and more budget-friendly) to quickly hire a third party to make repairs and handle regular maintenance. In fact, McKinsey found that outsourced labor for facility management is on the rise, and isn’t showing any signs of slowing down.
When managing outsourced labor and vendors, school facility management software allows Facility Managers to quickly get third-party labor up to speed on all the relevant information needed to get work orders completed.
What’s different about facility management for schools?
There are plenty of solutions school districts can use to manage their facility and maintenance workflows—home-brewed spreadsheets, dedicated email channels, industry non-specific management software. All of these solutions get the job done, but they fail to address a bigger problem.
School facility teams need to be able to work well across departments.
The maintenance team of a school district is often seen as the “dark horse” of departments—only being brought up when infrastructure is damaged or in need of repair. With school facility management software, facilities teams can easily collaborate with other departments such as IT, HR, teachers, admins, and district leadership.
This ensures that other departments have complete visibility of what school facility teams are working on, meaning fewer surprise work order requests and unsolicited “follow-up” emails in your facilities team’s inbox.
The importance of work order management
Work order management tools were designed with one goal in mind—to streamline workflows for facility teams. Without them, Facility Managers and technicians don’t have many options.
Spreadsheets get messy and don’t always meet the needs of an entire team with lots of individual users. Email isn’t a great channel either. Facility teams don’t have the time to manually track down work order requests in their inbox and communicate back-and-forth with requestors.
With school facility management software, managers and technicians can create custom automations that route and assign work orders to the appropriate team member based on work order type, location, priority level, and more.
These automatically assigned work orders also provide technicians with all the information they need when servicing district assets. By integrating their work order management solution with school asset management software, facility teams can access detailed asset data, such as manufacturing date, repair and service history, and more.
This functionality ensures that facility teams have everything they need to get the job done.
Looking for school facility management software? Here’s what you should look out for.
- Custom views and filters: Not all work orders are the same, and your workflow should reflect that. Custom views and filters let your team organize projects by classroom location, type of repair needed, priority level, and more.
- Parts and labor tracking: Repairs aren’t going to fix themselves. Parts and labor tracking helps you keep track of ordered parts, third-party vendors, and outsourced labor.
- An intuitive work order submission system: This is the key to streamlining your workflow. Your school facility management software needs to give district staff an easy way to submit their work orders, without taking more time out of your day.
- An analytics overview: No more guessing. A comprehensive analytics tool allows your team to easily identify workflow bottlenecks and explore data related to work orders, team members, SLAs, and more.
- Mobile facilities management: School field technicians can’t carry their laptops with them while they’re on the job. So, when they need quick information on the go, a mobile app is necessary.
Beyond facilities management
School facility management software fills in a lot of gaps for K-12 maintenance teams. But it works even better when it helps them stay connected to all the other departments in a school district.
With Incident IQ, school facility teams can access best-in-class facility management software that integrates with your district’s help desk, asset management system, and HR onboarding solution.
Because we believe that in order for school districts to run smoothly, support departments need to be able to work together—and school facility teams are no exception. Learn more about school facility management software or schedule a demo with us to see our tools first-hand.