Whether you’re in facility management, procurement, or operations, you’ve likely faced a pressing breakdown in your facility maintenance program and were let down by the maintenance partner you relied on.
Maybe they couldn’t coordinate an HVAC system repair fast enough, leading to customer and employee discomfort or even shutdowns. Maybe a refrigeration system was incorrectly serviced, leading to lost products and time due to callbacks. Maybe they caused a problem while servicing a sign, leading to an outage that rerouted customers to a competitor.
Whatever the situation, you ended up being worse off than when you contacted them. The struggles that multi-site companies have with facility maintenance program partners aren’t limited to performance issues, however. Other common examples that we hear include:
- Constant turnover with account managers and key contacts
- Key contacts not having relevant experience
- Frequent breakdowns in communication
- A lack of current asset and work history data
- Services being too general for their needs
While mistakes happen, even one occurrence of these issues can cause you serious headaches and financial repercussions. Multiple occurrences, on the other hand, simply cannot stand. More than 70% of B2B buyers cite reputation as the most influential factor when choosing a company to do business with — and for good reason.
As a leader in your organization, it’s important to work with a proven facility asset management partner you can rely on to work accurately, efficiently, and with the level of service you expect and deserve. Let’s explore four aspects of an ideal partnership and how they impact your facility maintenance program.
4 Customer Service Must-Haves for a Successful Facility Maintenance Program
A Strong, Tenured Customer Service Team
Everything starts and ends with the team of people you’ll be working with on your program. From the sales lead you first connected with and the account or program manager who will lead it going forward to the finance team and other service professionals. While communication between these individuals will occur for different needs and reasons, what matters is that all of them must be aligned on one thing: your success.
When key contacts keep leaving your partner company, that suggests a lot about their internal practices and makes managing operations harder for you. The new person will be learning from scratch, catching up to where things left off, slowing your program down, and creating the potential for mistakes. Ensure that when you select a facility maintenance program partner, all team members on their end are aligned on what’s expected, that they have the experience needed, and that they’re likely to stick around.
The CLS Difference: We assign a specific team to each partnership. You’ll have an account manager, preventive maintenance (PM) account manager, and a dedicated business manager. The average tenure of these team members is 14+ years with our company.
The Ability to Customize Your Facility Maintenance Program to Meet Your Needs
It might sound obvious that an asset management partner would customize your program according to your needs, but this isn’t always the case. You might be required to use some services that simply aren’t needed or as frequently. There might be shortcomings in their capabilities. Additionally, you might have operational or financial needs within your organization that have to be handled in a certain way in order to keep things moving.
In these instances, flexibility is critical. Your program won’t be as successful — nor your partner as helpful — as it would be working with a company that builds each program according to what you’re looking to achieve. Additionally, it’s important to work with someone who provides you with the information you need via a channel that’s easily accessible and available to you and your team 24/7.
The CLS Difference: Every facility maintenance program we design is built around your needs and your goals. Nothing is off-the-shelf. Additionally, we provide you with complete financial, program, and asset information via our online asset management portal.
Communication is how your facility management partner lives up to their promises. You could be working with one of the most recognized or largest service providers in the country, but if they’re not keeping you informed on your facility maintenance program or bringing new solutions to your attention, your program could be put at risk. You’ll be in the dark, won’t be able to make decisions, and won’t be able to address situations or new needs as quickly. All of this can quickly lead to a breakdown in the operations of one of your locations, inaccurate data and financial projections, and other consequences.
When looking for a company to support your facility maintenance program needs, ensure you understand exactly how they plan to communicate program status with you. When situations arise, what is their process for notifying you? Do they or will they adhere to a service level agreement (SLA) as part of their contract, or do they already have a similar accountability function in place? Ask all the questions you want up front — the more you know now, the more informed you’ll be later.
The CLS Difference: We understand the importance of communication in your program. All communication happens with the team outlined above who will keep you informed on status. Should a situation arise and you need to reach us, the same team assigned to you is who you’ll reach out to for support.
If you can’t trust your partner to execute your facility maintenance program reliably and efficiently, then there is no true partnership. You’re entrusting the asset management of dozens, hundreds, or even thousands of locations to a single PM service provider. You must have confidence that they know what they’re doing, are executing on time, are able to identify solutions to new problems, will support you on the back end with reporting and analysis, and more. It all comes down to trust.
The CLS Difference: We’ve been serving multiple industries nationwide for more than 50 years. With strong vendor relationships, a tenured team, and a relentless commitment to the success of your program, you can rest assured that we have the knowledge, capabilities, and follow-through to support your success now and for years to come.
Where Do You Stand?
After reviewing these four considerations, what comes to mind about your current partner? Have they upheld their promises of keeping your locations proactively maintained and operational? Have they delivered lasting value to your team and organization? If you don’t have a partner, we hope these points will help you as you evaluate solutions for your preventive maintenance needs.
And of course, remember that CLS Facility Services is here to support you. We’ve worked with some of the largest, most recognized brands in the country across multiple industries, delivering exceptional value, reliable and timely service, and measurable performance. We can do the same for you.