Do you have a large building or facility? If so, then you have a lot of light fixtures to worry about.
Who is responsible?
Tenants and residents may be responsible for the fixtures in their apartment or office (or at least for reporting them), but with light fixtures typically located every eight feet in corridors, as well as lobbies, common areas, elevators and stairwells, maintenance needs to keep track of blown bulbs and more serious problems.
Problem reporting causes problems
Large buildings generally rely on somebody reporting when a lighting fixture is “out” – this has its own problems (including people’s tendency to assume somebody else reported a problem). Then the request would easily become lost, perhaps resulting in a light being out for several days and even an expensive lawsuit if somebody trips and falls in a dark corner. Stairwell lights are particularly important for this reason, but can sometimes go unnoticed for a while. Finally, being able to repair a light fixture in a timely manner relies on having the required parts, bulbs, or tubes on hand.
Asset tracking software provides answers
Asset tracking software can provide part of the answer. Although it cannot (yet) tell you when a bulb dies, it can properly track maintenance requests. It can also track inventory, giving a warning when stocks drop below a certain level. By using QR codes, the software allows maintenance personnel to “scan out” bulbs and tubes when they remove them for use. Each fixture can also be labeled and scanned, giving a specific record of when that fixture was last serviced. This can help reduce unnoticed outages by telling maintenance which fixtures are most likely to need work, especially if linked to a database that gives typical (or recorded) use life for the tubes or bulbs being used. For example, if maintenance knows that the fluorescent tubes in the corridor lighting typically last three years, then the software can generate a list of which fixtures were last serviced three years ago and direct maintenance to check them.
QR code barcodes streamline the process
A QR-based system, rather than barcode-based, has the advantage of working with the smartphones maintenance are already carrying. In fact, a building could even provide an app to tenants and residents, who could then use their phones to scan a fixture and send in a maintenance request without having to call or go to the front desk. This is likely to increase reporting. The person reporting the outage could then be informed when it is fixed. Until we have systems (which are in development) where the fixtures report their own failure, improving reporting helps improve repair turnaround. This also saves time by automating the entire process. In theory, the report can go straight to the right maintenance person, who can then queue the work order in an efficient way and will know immediately if there is a supply problem.
Information’s available online
Finally, such a system can give important information to the maintenance manager. For example, if a certain type and make of bulb is lasting less time than expected, the manager can adjust procurement to avoid using those bulbs. Or, management can preferentially purchase parts which have been demonstrated as lasting longer. Asset management software can help save money by allowing for more educated choices and also help with sustainability initiatives by reducing waste and premature replacement.
In short, you do not need to rely on paper work orders, or even on an email-based system. By using a proper cloud-based asset management program you can track which fixtures have been serviced, monitor inventory of parts, improve reporting of outages and observe patterns of durability and usage. If you are looking for a good asset management program to track light fixture maintenance and repair (or other inventory purposes), contact GoCodes today.