Unplanned Downtime

The benefits of real-time scheduling software

M anaging assets and resources is an ongoing challenge for many organisations. Even a short bout of unplanned downtime can be very costly and have a detrimental effect on an organisations image. In this blog, we shall look at the impacts of this downtime and how digital solutions and real time scheduling can counter this.

Just how much does it cost?

The impact of unplanned downtime upon a business can be significant, especially when operations grind to a halt, and getting a field service technician there quickly with the appropriate information and parts is essential. Workforce management software costs just a fraction of the potential losses and digitising your approach to workforce scheduling can help protect your organisation from the negative outcomes of unplanned downtime.

The most noticeable impact of unplanned downtime, aside from the direct financial cost, is often inability to deliver services promised to customers which has consequential impact. With real time scheduling it is possible to respond to these changes immediately or with the appropriate priority, and find the quickest and most cost effective solution.

The solution

The first step in solving a problem is recognising that there is a problem. Next is to consider how the problem (or risk) can be mitigated and in many circumstances a preventative maintenance programme will help reduce asset failures and this should most definitely be part of your consideration. For some businesses this can not only reduce, but completely eliminate unplanned downtime, but it is always a balance between the cost and resources required to do this versus the cost of downtime. With the ever-increasing advances in technology, especially in Workforce Management software, getting this balance right is becoming easier.

Real time scheduling software solutions such as the FLS VISITOUR with it’s PowerOpt algorithm are able to plan ahead preventative maintenance activities with minimal travel time and also react to asset failures by re-scheduling engineers in real-time with the new priority, dramatically reducing the time to attend to issues and consequently the amount of downtime.

With this streamlined approach to asset management and workforce management, available engineering time will be better utilised and there will be less downtime due to failures. Investment in an automated scheduling system may not appear to be immediately profitable but for every customer FLS is prepared to prove a tangible saving before they commit to purchase, plus the luxury of peace of mind is invaluable when the potential operational costs from downtime can be so high.