Almost every business has to deal with maintenance expenses of some kind. Many businesses depend on contracting maintenance companies to keep them going strong. Whether it’s for keeping machines up and running in factories, or keeping kitchen equipment working well in restaurants. However, a maintenance contract can run pretty high. Competent managers are always on the lookout for ways to reduce its cost. In the manufacturing sector, it has been estimated that some companies spend more on maintenance costs than they make in net profits over a typical year.
While it may seem extraordinarily difficult to cut these costs, a good strategy can keep these expenses under control. A great maintenance cost-cutting plan can prevent overspending by eliminating potential emergencies, which tend to drain the maintenance budgets of companies.
What Is A Maintenance Contract?
Maintenance is simply the process of maintaining or preserving the equipment, building, and grounds of a given business. It includes any action needed to restore or retain these assets. This includes repairing mechanical issues, including, but not limited to, hardware, plumbing, and electrical issues, as well as any infrastructure repairs and additions.
A maintenance contract is a contract between a maintenance company and another party that states that the former will maintain an asset owned by the latter. They are common in several industries, and mainly exist to retain buildings, equipment, computers, and landscapes, and to provide IT assistance.
Who Benefits From A Maintenance Contract?
Maintenance is indispensable to many industries. Preventive maintenance is of the utmost importance. It can circumvent the majority of expensive problems that can occur down the road. Not only will it cost a company a lot of money to repair these issues, but production can stop due to faulty equipment and this can lead to a loss in profits. Preventive maintenance also leads to vast improvements in the performance of the equipment.
Workers also benefit from a safer workplace and not having to sit out during machine crashes. These breakdowns can lead to costly overtime for the company.
How Much Is Usually Spent on Maintenance Contracts?
The Building Owners and Managers’ Association, or BOMA, released data in the year 2000 reflecting typical building repair and maintenance contract costs. They concluded that maintenance accounts for a staggering 15% of all expenses. And according to mintek.com, maintenance can consume an additional 12 – 18% of a company’s operating costs if preventive measures are not put into place. The article goes on to say that companies actually spend 15 – 20% more in energy costs without an HVAC maintenance contract.
These costs are unavoidable, because skipping out on these preventive measures only leads to higher costs down the road when something inevitably falls into disarray. Not only will the company have to pay for reactive maintenance, they may also be on the hook for equipment replacement costs. Mintek also estimates that every dollar spent on preventive maintenance saves a company five dollars on all other expenses.
Six Ways in Which You Can Reduce Maintenance Contract Spending
1. Equipment Optimization
A good way to save on your maintenance contract is to leverage all your machines to get the most value from them. Always use all equipment only for the purpose for which it is made for. Be sure not to use your equipment beyond its natural lifespan or the parameters it is set to operate in. Doing so can result frequent costly repairs.
2. Prioritize Maintenance
Divide your machinery and equipment into two separate categories – normal and high priority. All high priority equipment and hardware should be the subject of extensive preventive coverage per your maintenance contract. This especially applies to machinery that must be up and running 24 hours a day. However, it is likely that only a fraction of your infrastructure will qualify as high priority, thus saving you money.
3. Schedule Maintenance
Since most breakdowns are unpredictable, scheduling preventive intervention through your maintenance contract can minimize surprises. Regular scheduling of maintenance should cover all essential accessories and machinery/ Doing so should be a clause on your maintenance contract.
4. Purchase Insurance And Warranties
Whenever your business purchases new equipment, be sure to insure it or get an extension on your warranty. This will put a cap on the costs accrued throughout your maintenance contract since breakdowns are not likely to occur immediately. Protecting your assets will most likely save you money over the long term.
5. Carry Spares
Sometimes a maintenance contract can not exist when it comes to smaller, less expensive pieces of equipment. Simply carry spares. If anyone on staff is able to reconnect a few minor plugs, it may not be worth insuring some machines or covering them under a costly warranty. Having spares of smaller pieces of equipment and some easy-to-swap parts can save you thousands of dollars off of a typical maintenance contract.
6. Delegate Maintenance
Do you have handy staff members? You may try paying them extra to maintain machinery that they have a working knowledge of. This is a way to circumvent a maintenance contract altogether.
In conclusion, there are many ways that a company can save money on a maintenance contract. A business can engage in delegating maintenance tasks, preventive measures, optimizing machinery, or insuring new equipment. However, maintenance doesn’t have to be as costly as it may seem up front. Unfortunately, it is an unavoidable expense that all businesses must consider in order to run and in order to grow. Have you found an interesting way to save your business some money on its maintenance contract? Share your experience in the comments below or on our Facebook page.
Image from depositphotos.com.