With over 40,000 students, Frederick County Public Schools takes great pride in its facilities, with the mantra “We strive to provide an optimum learning environment.” Unfortunately, the M&O Department was using an antiquated maintenance management software. It seemed economically efficient at the time, but they encountered issues getting reliable data and information out of the software. After seven years, Frederick County realized it was time for a change.
Unsure of the best route for the district, they hired a consulting firm to weigh their options. After going out to bid for a new CMMS, Curtis Orndorff, Manager of Building Maintenance said, “Dude Solutions’ corrective maintenance, preventive maintenance and capital forecasting fit our ideal needs.”
Unlike most institutions, Frederick County Public Schools started by implementing preventive maintenance (PM) rather than getting the work order system up and running first. Therefore, the system had a complete inventory of all equipment in order to tag corrective work orders to specific equipment and materials. “We are performing PM on over 180,000 pieces of equipment including fire systems, emergency lights, parking lot lights, HVAC, etc; and we used industry standards to correctly schedule PM tasks,” Curtis said. “As a result, our equipment has far exceeded the industry standard life expectancy and we receive less work order requests because our equipment is well-maintained.” Over 50% of work orders are preventive maintenance versus corrective maintenance.
The need for change didn’t stop there. Each technician received a tablet to complete and close out work orders in the field, creating faster response times, thanks to Dude Solutions cloud-based software that can be accessed from any device. “We updated technology for the team more than a year sooner than anticipated,” said Curtis. “We’ve received many compliments from administrators and faculty who can keep track of their requests with automatic status email updates.”
Additionally, with The Dude’s capital forecasting solution, Frederick County can begin to plan and budget for items outside of routine and preventive maintenance. “We see how [Work & Asset™] will help us better determine which projects to complete and create a timeline for these projects.” Curtis said.
Frederick County’s M&O Department is split into 8 areas based on square footage. Using Dude Solutions’ granular reports and data, the district can analyze data team by team. “We use the reports and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to compare each area’s performance. I also review these regularly with each Area Supervisor to find emerging trends and patterns,” said Curtis. The district tracks several KPIs to compare their performance to districts nationwide, including number of work orders per employee, open work orders and work order completion time. “We can now pull data we previously didn’t have access to with our old software package. Each technician now knows what has been previously done in a particular facility or on a piece of equipment,” Curtis added.
The Facilities Services Division created a Balanced Score Card, which provides information to the Board based on the district’s aspirational goals related to student achievement and maintenance performance. Curtis uses the data and KPIs from Dude Solutions to show his team’s current performance on the Balance Score Card. “This helps track our success and indicate areas for improvement to the Board,” Curtis said.
With the switch to The Dude came a cultural change at the district as well. To help with the shift, the district developed an extensive professional development program for M&O Area Supervisors with the International Facilities Management Association. “We have put over 40 supervisors through various parts of the program to become facilities management professionals. Our goal is to inspire future leaders,” said Curtis. He has seen a positive result in team performance and has received universally positive feedback from his staff, with a 91% satisfaction rating on M&O training.
“We have many stories of how facilities improvements have helped students work better. In all we do, the ‘Learning Environment’ is key to students achieving greatness. Dude Solutions has helped our performance and focus on serving the students.”
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