Clients, suppliers and investors critically scrutinize organizations on their safety and sustainability credentials, and companies can receive commercial penalties for poor performance.
While countless businesses understand that a computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) reduces expenditures and increases maintenance and plant efficiency, many organizations fail to recognize that a modern CMMS, paired with an optimized maintenance program, enhances their safety and significantly reduces their carbon footprint.
Here are six ways businesses can use a CMMS to fulfill their Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) and sustainability obligations.
A CMMS system manages asset lifecycles and reduces material waste in two ways:
Further waste reduction occurs for organizations using their CMMS for predictive maintenance, causing a reduction in preventive maintenance tasks and increasing the time between maintenance interventions, saving consumables and other resources.
A CMMS helps an organization comply with EHS regulations by ensuring routine equipment inspections and maintenance and tracking safety incidents, near-misses, and hazards. The collected data helps facilities strategize on how to reduce the risk of accidents and improve safety training programs and culture.
At an operational level, using the CMMS to implement predictive and preventive maintenance reduces the risk of failures that jeopardize the health and safety of operators and bystanders.
Additionally, it optimizes maintenance tasks. This reduces maintenance intervention needs and results in less technician exposure to the elevated safety risks of shutdown, maintenance and startup tasks.
A CMMS allows organizations to collect real-time data on their energy use. Analyzing this data identifies trends and improvement opportunities and informs strategic actions that reduce energy consumption.
Operationally, the frequency-based inspections of preventive maintenance or condition-based predictive maintenance prevent equipment from being operated when components are causing increased energy use.
Components that cause elevated energy use include:
Equipment defects can cause environmental exceedance due to:
A proactive maintenance program, managed by a CMMS, reduces equipment malfunctions and failures and helps companies remain compliant with environmental regulations.
A CMMS can also track and manage hazardous materials and waste streams. By monitoring the use and disposal of these materials, a company can identify potential environmental risks and take corrective action before any exceedance occurs.
For example, a CMMS can track the quantity and location of hazardous materials, ensuring they are properly stored, labeled and disposed of according to applicable regulations.
A CMMS helps to reduce a company's paper waste in four ways:
An organization can use its CMMS to centralize inventory management by tracking inventory levels across multiple locations and alerting when supplies need replenishing. The need for frequent deliveries to each location is reduced, providing efficient delivery scheduling and routing.
Analyzing the data compiled by the CMMS from the maintenance and inventory departments offers opportunities to optimize the supply chain and reduce delivery miles. The resulting supplier consolidation, delivery reduction and delivery route optimization all contribute to reduced emissions.
Finally, using a CMMS provides effective preventive maintenance, which:
A CMMS helps businesses improve EHS and sustainability performance by:
These actions lead to reduced costs and increased efficiency while contributing to environmental and social benefits, such as reduced waste generation, lower carbon emissions, and improved health and safety.
As businesses become more aware of the importance of sustainable practices, it's time to start looking at CMMS as more than just a solution to maintenance issues. By adopting a sustainable approach to maintenance operations and utilizing a CMMS to support those efforts, businesses can reap the benefits of improved sustainability performance and an enhanced bottom line.
Ultimately, a CMMS is an essential tool for businesses looking to create a more sustainable future for themselves and the planet.