Maintenance On The Clock, Effective Time Management

maintenance time management

Whenever some one mentions time management, the first thought is how this can affect and improve the leasing or administrative functions at a property. Have we considered the opportunities to improve maintenance with time management?

It seems the frustration of not enough time plagues the maintenance team, as often as the leasing staff. It was a really busy week, so “we didn’t…..” This explanation is why a turn wasn’t completed, or preventive maintenance was not completed..the order for supplies was not complete…

Work Load Analysis

maintenance time management

Time never changes, we all have 24 hours in a day…generally forty hours in a work week. To review maintenance performance can identify startling results. Using the work order software, total the work orders completed in a week, or month. Happy Acres has a hundred service requests received and entered for the month. The first reaction is WOW, a hundred service requests. But, to break down the work flow, there are usually 20 working days each month. This translates to five service orders each day, a staff of two, or three? This isn’t a heavy workload.

The frustration, “maintenance didn’t get this done,” usually isn’t a maintenance time management problem. It’s a scheduling and communication problem. Imagine starting the day with the team meeting:

-Quick review, any emergencies
-Any service requests not completed from the previous day?
-Which units are scheduled for move in this week, and next?

Scheduling time for the service orders, with the expectation, this morning we’ll get these five service orders complete. This afternoon one person will finish the turnover, one maintenance will change filters. At four p.m check with the office to see if there are any new service requests that need to be completed today. Are there any supplies that need to be ordered for this week.

The Schedule

Planning a day can grow utilizing time management to  plan for  an entire week. Saving unnecessary trips to a local hardware for miscellaneous parts can add an hour to the workflow every day. Looking at the location of service requests to assign work in neighboring units, instead of trekking back and forth to the maintenance shop or the office between each assignment can also increase productivity.

Looking at the “must do’s” and blocking out the time needed, eliminates the frantic chaos caused, when we thought we’d have time to do a quick walk through before the move in, and then before you know it, it’s the end of the day and critical items have not been completed.

Lori Hammond
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Lori Hammond

Thirty plus years experience in an industry best characterized as "no two days are the same" provides the foundation for Lori Hammond's experience in Property Management.With education and career experiences in Mid-Michigan, the audience for the blog Property Management Minutes is growing.Connect with her on , Linkedin, and on Blog.
Lori Hammond
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3 thoughts on “Maintenance On The Clock, Effective Time Management

  1. Thanks for the information so often managers tend to overlook the obvious that service techs have little if any time management skills. In addition the service managers tend to allow two or more techs to “team up” this practice is a killer for productivity. Being aware of assigned duties and having the ability to estimate time needed for typical service requests is paramount for a successful maintenance department. Whenever possible tasks should be combined ( example: changing a/c filter should also include a quick check for leaks under kitchen and bath sinks along with installing flappers and toilet handles) this can be then entered in preventative maintenance logs and the following month add a different item such as smoke detector batteries done with appliance inspections.
    To properly implement preventive maintenance all items should be addressed semi annually with pre ordering and delivery of goods needed scheduled and received on a set schedule and included in monthly budget.

  2. The information was great and I would like to add another tool which will also help in the time management struggle. I personally log each days activities in my “little black book” (as my team has named it), it is a very valuable tool especially when it comes to contractor invoices and even depositions. You have the ability to recall so much information that would normally be forgotton, such as times and dates. As a tool for the team I don’t know if I would suggest making it a full time expectation but maybe an exercise that you can ask them to do for a specific period of time and use the exercise on a monthly basis or as detirmined.