The Difference between Planes and Buildings Maintenance

Plane maintenance is defined by running hours of each part of the plane. Nobody doubts about the necessity of making sure plane maintenance is done well and in due time. But buildings don't have running hours logger and maintenance is mostly conducted based on the condition of the building. So how to make sure that it's planned properly?

I compare plane (or any other asset with running hours logger) and building on purpose. Of course, planes and hotel buildings aren't the same, but I want to underline how to conduct building maintenance repeatedly, on time and keep each building, its parts and its equipment in proper condition for a long time.

I am going to show you my approach on an example from Velaa Private Island Maldives where I was looking for ways to help my team with building maintenance planning and executing. The biggest challenge we were facing was how to keep all villas in perfect condition and ready for the most demanding guests arriving at Velaa.

If you want to manage, you must measure and monitor

Each preventive maintenance has to be planned for specific time or occasion and the specific tasks and their completion must be tracked. I used to use one MS Excel spreadsheet with a special timeline for each building or equipment maintenance and a second MS Excel or even a simple paper spreadsheet for tracking actions during each maintenance. But having this information separated in this way prevented me from seeing connections between them - and to be honest I think this is almost impossible.

If you connect your future schedule and history of maintenance actions taken in the past you can get the whole picture of the maintenance needs of each particular asset. And what is next? You need some trigger which will remind you that planned maintenance should be conducted. Assets for which you are used to tracking running hours, such as planes or boats, are easier to plan for. But creating a periodical the maintenance schedule for other assets, such as buildings, is way more challenging.

How to avoid postponing building maintenance

When I was creating building maintenance schedules in Velaa Private Island Maldives, I was focusing on proper and on time maintenance of each villa. Each villa has 6 months maintenance period, during which it was out of order for 3 to 5 days. The plan was not adjusted only based on the maintenance needs, but also human resources constraints - we knew we needed to spread out all villa maintenance into 22 weeks to be able to do it with existing team capacity.

Having a schedule and a plan is important, but of course, unexpected problems can always happen. For example, if the villa you need to complete some maintenance tasks on is occupied, or a guest prefers a specific villa just when it should be worked on, you need to start rescheduling of maintenance actions.

Six months villa maintenance timeline visualization

I began to use visualization of each villa maintenance in the calendar. There, I could see all villas maintenance due dates - rows were all our villas and columns were weeks. This allowed me to see a combination of maintenance history and schedule for 22 weeks and request Front Office to block specific villas as out of order for maintenance one week in advance.

But very often Front Office requested me to change schedule because some guests requested villa in time when my team was going to start the maintenance. In that case I was trying to find a solution on how to allocate villa for guests and doing so the maintenance in another time.

The visualization of planned maintenance in calendar allowed me to shift the dates of maintenance for different villas back or forward with ease and control. I could reschedule it very quickly due to drag and drop function and I could find solution how to make Front Office and most importantly our guests satisfied.

Postponing maintenance made easy

Sometimes rescheduling the maintenance wasn't possible due to high occupancy of all villas. Then I had to postpone the maintenance, sometimes even a few weeks in the future. The visualization was helping me to assess the maintenance plan each week and to evaluate if maintenance team capacity is sufficient for all maintenance jobs planned for that period.

The toughest situation was at the end of the maintenance period. The visualization was helping me to make decisions to allocate more people for maintenance jobs to complete all these jobs within the defined maintenance period.

Would you want to see a practical demo?

If you would like to see a practical demo of how I worked with building maintenance planning and tracking, contact me and I will be very happy to show you!

Do you have experience with building maintenance planning and tracking? Share with me and other readers your experience! And if you have any questions or comments, feel free to contact me.


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