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Checklist for a successful implementation of your marine CMMS software

Guireg Captain

Once you have chosen your CMMS software, your task is to make the necessary settings to implement it within your organisation and on board your vessels. To do this, here is a checklist that will help you to facilitate this deployment phase.

1. Determine in advance your objectives and expectations of the software

The first step is to find out why you want to implement CMMS software and how it will benefit your organisation. We advise you to list your objectives so that they are clear and the whole team can benefit. Also, when you implement the software on your ship, be clear about how it will meet your expectations, so don't hesitate to ask all your questions and requests to the creators of the software you are thinking of using so that they can help and guide you. Communication with your team upstream is also essential. You need to make sure that everyone's expectations and fears are taken into account. Once you have determined your roadmap, you can begin the search for the CMMS software best suited to your organisation.


2. Thinking about your tree structure: departments and sub-sets

Before starting with your software, you should think about how you are going to structure your organisation and plan your maintenance tasks. On your CMMS software, you can group your equipment and spare parts into departments to segment its categories (e.g. deck, machine, safety...). If you wish to add more categories, some software such as FLEET from Smart Sailors gives you the possibility to create sub-assemblies. This way, you will be more efficient in searching your list of equipment, maintenance or anything related to it. If you think about these elements from the very beginning of your software, you will already be well organised to save time later on.

3. Select a first "pilot" boat to be set up in the application

If you have several boats, we advise you to start your deployment on one boat only. There is no point in starting with 15 boats if you have not yet mastered the software. It is recommended that you choose this test ship according to priorities or from a batch of sister ships to allow you to test your model. Once you are comfortable with the software, become self-sufficient, and the maintenance management goes smoothly, you can then deploy the software to your entire fleet.

PS: Of course, during the implementation of the software on your test boat and on your entire fleet, the experts of the Smart Sailors Team will accompany you and answer all your questions πŸ˜‰

4. Identify key personnel who should be involved in the project from the outset

At the beginning, you are not obliged to enter all your employees into the software, but you must choose the people who will be using the application a lot. Identify the key employees, i.e. the people who play an important role in the management of your maintenance.

For example, you may choose your technical director and one or two captains and engineers who will need to be well versed in their new work tool to ensure the successful deployment of the software within your maritime fleet.

5. Explain the benefits of a CMMS for everyone

Your staff may not be familiar with CMMS tools and may be reluctant to change the way they work. If you decide to start with a new software without informing your whole crew, some of your employees may not fully understand the interest of the software, which could alter your experience with it. That's why we recommend that you take the time up front to explain everything and involve your team in the decision. This will help you during the implementation of the software and afterwards.

6. Managing email alerts well

When you are at an advanced stage of implementation, you will start to receive emails and notifications when maintenance is due, when your stocks are low or when one of your certificates is about to expire. To avoid missing out without overwhelming your main mailbox, you can create a dedicated email address that will only be used for these alerts. This way, you limit the risk of missing an important deadline. We also advise you to delete emails that are no longer of use to you as you go along, so that you have a clear view of what is pending.

Ps: If you miss email notification, know that on the app, there is a dashboard that will always remind you of soon-to-be overdue or late deadlines πŸš€

7. Retrieve information to be entered upstream

Before starting with your software, you need to gather all the information about your vessels: meter values, equipment list, equipment manufacturer references, serial numbers, manufacturer's PDF manuals, scan of the vessel's documents... All the information that will be necessary to feed the software and adapt it to your reality. If some of this data is available in Excel documents, it is often possible to import it into the software to save you time on data entry.

8. Think about the permissions and access rights of your employees

In our CMMS software, you can determine who does what within the fleet with very simple permissions and restrictions. All you have to do is to check the actions that can be done or not done by each of the roles you define. To take the first steps in the application, start by defining the roles of each person in the software and the information to which they should have access (ships, features, etc.). We often find the same roles as on board the ship: captains, navigators/operators, managers and administrators...

9. Always think about training your employees

In our experience, software training is often the key! Indeed, when software is deployed without an effort to train each person who has to use it, there is a low adoption rate within the organisation. This is also the case when there is turnover within the teams and newcomers have not been trained. This often leads to a drop in the usage rate and to information becoming obsolete and no longer being kept up to date. We therefore recommend that you pay particular attention to the involvement of everyone and that you provide training if necessary. You can also rely on the key members you identified at the beginning of the project, who can be the reference persons for passing on their knowledge to their colleagues.

PS: As always, we are here to support you and offer well-practiced workshops 😎



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