Annual Shutdown is a Great Time to Get a CMMS System up and Running

annual shutdown

Annual shutdowns for calibration and maintenance can be a great time to start a new CMMS system.

Many pharmaceutical, biotechnology, medical device and other companies with validated systems perform an annual shutdown for scheduled calibration and maintenance toward the end of the year. This is a great time to collect information and clean up records and schedules for your validated Calibration and Maintenance Management Software (CMMS) system. If you don’t have a validated CMMS system in place, this is a great time to do it and transition from your current system. Here is how you can save money and time while implementing a validated CMMS system so that you can improve your compliance in the new year!

First, identify your requirements for a CMMS system and find one that you can get up and running without much delay. GxPReady! Suite is a CMMS system (that can also track validation, by the way) that can be up and running quickly, at low cost, and comes with validation package INCLUDING execution.  Of course you want 21CFR11 and Annex 11 compliance as part of the package.    There is a setup cost and a monthly subscription, and that covers you for a validated CMMS system, but I digress.  The point is, there are options out there to fit any budget and timeline and you don’t have to install and maintain your own servers to be compliant.  For this article, we focus on what the author is familiar with: low budget and no timeline!  After all, we have a shutdown to get through.

The point is, once you identify a validated CMMS system, and have it validated within a couple of weeks (GxPReady! Suite is an example of a CMMS system that can meet that requirement), an annual shutdown is an opportunity to transfer information from the field to your new database (using equipment data sheets that are supplied with the  CMMS system, or by creating your own sheets). Once you collect the information from the field, you can assign appropriate intervals, tolerances, and determine the maintenance required.

If the CMMS software has easy data entry and a clean workflow with a low burden for data entry, you can quickly enter the information required and then have a fully qualified CMMS system up and running and on schedule by the end of your scheduled calibration and maintenance shutdown.

Starting in January, you can run reports to determine what the new scheduled dates are have a great process in place which will stand up to audits and give your equipment longer life with less down time. Of course, if you save downtime with a great maintenance program, you save manufacturing all of those headaches and delays. With all the money you are saving your company, you definitely deserve a raise! Have a great shutdown!