Eclipse-fm® - Doing more with Less
In this issue we are focusing on the Web Eclipse module, as it presents many opportunities to provide a better FM service with a need for minimal extra resources, and perhaps with even fewer!
We also have a sneak preview of what is going into the next revision, Eclipse-fm® 2010 v5.1, and a report from the recent Feedback group.
Non Users - Eclipse-fm® Demonstrations
If you would like to look at the latest Eclipse-fm® developments, please contact us on 0845 2707747 and we will be more than happy to arrange a demonstration.
|WebEclipse - a better FM service for less cost
Eclipse-fm® has a wealth of management reports available, and one that has caught our eye is Task Hourly Call Analysis.
Using this report report we noticed that all the Trusts running Eclipse-fm show a common pattern of a significant peak in the creation of maintenance tasks early in the day, and then a drop to the "base load" for the rest of the day.
Click on any image in this section for a full size version
That is of course, no surprise, as the morning peak represents all those tasks saved up since the previous end of normal working hours. But what, in turn, does that mean?
- Tasks someone has had to write down and remember to phone up about "tomorrow"
- Tasks someone has had to pass on to the day team to phone up about "tomorrow".
- Tasks someone is going to have to wait in the start of business telephone queue to tell the Helpdesk about.
- Perhaps - Tasks someone has e-mailed to "helpdesk@Trust-X" overnight.
- Tasks the helpdesk staff are going to have to respond to and create from incoming phone calls and voice mail
- Tasks the helpdesk staff are going to have to respond to and create from stacked up emails.
That is a lot of time, and maybe some aggravation, spread around busy people who would welcome a better way of doing things.
Anecdotally we are also aware of a Friday afternoon peak in enquiries into existing tasks as everyone clears their desk at the end of the week. Eclipse-fm® does not have a report that shows that!
There is a better way
In day to day life self service has become a welcome feature. We dont wait for an operator to connect our telephone calls, we dial them ourselves. Few would want to go back to those days! We besiege the supermarkets in preference to "old fashioned" shops with serving staff.
We have also become used to the Internet. Data entry over the Internet for shopping and other purposes has become common place, for all the reasons of convenience and immediacy that we have become used to - and because you get more control thereafter. Questions like "Where is my parcel" "Change my booking" without needing to wait in a queue on the telephone. And the automation implied has kept costs down of course.
WebEclipse - is the better way!
You can bring the benefits of self service to your Help Desk. Your Help Desk "Customers" can very easily create ad hoc Help Desk tasks at any point day or night in the time it would take them to write themselves a reminder to do it "tomorrow". Then they dont have to think about it again "tomorrow", or, worse, brief someone else to do it, thereby occupying two people in non productive labour.
Helpdesk task Ticket Entry in WebEclipse
Most of this is automatically created
e.g. WebEclipse knows your location
Help desk staff will spend less time on creating tasks, instead doing productive work on tasks already created. That may just be scheduling them for execution, but if it involves finding out more about a particular task, then this becomes a useful contact initiated from the Helpdesk, and will still add up to less time spent overall than is the case when helpdesk staff have to create all tasks.
WebEclipse also reduces the Friday afternoon pressure, as customers can check up on tasks for themselves. This brings the FM service up to the levels we have become used to in other walks of life, such as tracking parcels!
Ward Enquiry - Current Task Status
Includes links to each task
Ward Enquiry - Individual Task History
Ward Enquiry - Ward Task History
Includes links to each task
Time and Cost Saving - Not just out of hours?
Self service will not just be for out of hours defect reporting. For many, the simplicity and immediacy of a quick web page entry will be preferred to a phone call to an overloaded Help Desk. But of course that does depend on an available PC, and the response times of the Help Desk staff to incoming calls.
Creating a helpdesk task probably takes a minimum of 3 minutes. 12,000 calls in a quarter needing to be created as tasks (not untypical) represents 600 hours. Thats over 3 staff weeks per quarter, or in cash terms around £5,500 per year - at a conservative estimate and leaving aside the Friday afternoon "Whats happened to my task?" calls.
Even if only 25% of those calls went through WebEclipse the potential saving would more than pay for it!
Or a better service?
Of course you will not immediately release £5,500 or even £1,300 for other uses, but the benefits/savings accrue in other ways.
- Is the FM department under pressure in handling Help Desk calls? Does it really need another person? WebEclipse would reduce that pressure, allowing for a better working environment and a better service at minimal additional cost - much less than that of another person.
- Do you have a staffing problem looming? People do change jobs or retire, and that can make the difference between a supportable workload and unsustainable pressure on the service. £750 for Web Eclipse could be a low cost contribution to avoiding that.
- Are there things you would like to take on or improve, but day to day work demands somehow mean you can never get the time to innovate? Web Eclipse could well reduce that pressure and free up time to make those improvements, take on those extra commitments.
- Finally, in these stretched times, are you under pressure to do more with less staff? Maybe WebEclipse could let you do just that.
Asset Management - WebEclipse is not just about Helpdesk tasks
WebEclipse also provides valuable asset information to ward etc staff, including location and if on loan.
Eclipse-fm® is a highly effective management system for the facilities function of an NHS trust. WebEclipse offers many opportunities for providing a better service to FM "customers" and a better working environment for FM Staff, at a very low cost.
|EBME Management Development - Update
The Eclipse-fm® EBME provisions continue to provide a focus for further interest. The discussion meeting in April was very positive, and has resulted in a specification for further development, in part based on the detail of the EBME maintenance system developed over a period of some years at The Ipswich Hospital NHS Trust, but also incorporating other points covered by the meeting.
We are now in a position to accept orders from interested Trusts for the EBME module, because the development required from the specification is now achievable in the relatively short time-scale of one to two months and will result in an Eclipse-fm® EBME module that will incorporate the practical needs of those currently engaged in EBME maintenance and repair work.
The main requirement is to extend the record of a particular task to provide more technical and financial detail. Specifically, an initial Task List and accompanying individual new detail Tabs as follows:-
A list of jobs (tickets) currently planned to test specific assets. The rows are highlighted based upon the familiar a traffic light system warning of when a test is due. Double clicking on a row launches a dialog showing more information about that ticket and asset:-
Model, Sn, Supplier, location, warranty detail, date checked in for repair, etc
This is largely as already available in Eclipse-fm® but re-organised and extended for the EBME Module
Parts and costs
All the parts and labour costs related to the repair or maintenance of the asset on that particular repair.
These would aggregate into a cost history allowing decision to be made as to whether it is worth repairing a particular asset, based upon its previous repairs, or whether it would be cheaper in the long run to buy a new asset outright
Particularly, the test results acquired from the test device, and with provision for further specifically electrical related detail such as Leakage, Insulation, Internal Battery replacement date and more. While this data would be capable of manual entry, as is done at Ipswich now, this would better be acquired directly from the test device, and this would be a desirable part of the development of the new module. The existing integration of Eclipse-fm® with the Rigel test device is the starting point for this.
A list, probably with "click through" to the details, of all the repair and maintenance tasks carried out on the asset
- Nature of Service - ranging from standard calibration to one off fault, but pre-defined as far as possible to allow for analysis
- Description - more details on nature of repair/maintenance instance
Rigel 288 Safety Analyser Integration
The existing Eclipse-fm® link to the Rigel 288 safety analyser will provide for workshop bench testing as well as the current in-the-field testing.
Currently, Eclipse-fm® assumes that the Rigel safety analyser is taken onto wards etc where all electrical devices found are tested in situ. At the end of testing the Rigel tester is docked with the PC and the test results saved against each asset number as a PPM-safety test job which includes the details of the analyser device number, the calibration data, the test technician ID, etc. This provides a test history for all assets managed as part of the Eclipse-fm® system.
If a device fails its test a maintenance task should be raised to rectify the defect, and while this is currently done manually, in future a new job to repair the asset will automatically be created, saving on admin time and, with an automatic link to the failure details, removing a possible source of error.
Workshop Bench Testing
Extension to cover bench testing in a repair facility will provide for Eclipse-fm® to trigger a specific test to be done by the Rigel analyser on the particular piece of equipment that is being serviced.
While working on an Eclipse-fm® managed EBME maintenance task, the technician can trigger a safety test on the device (i.e. asset) that the task is related to and the results are immediately saved in the task and asset record along with the details of the repair done, materials used etc. In this case rather than generate another maintenance task in the event that a test result is unsatisfactory, the technician will be able to review the repair and testing carried out in order to further diagnose the problem and continue with testing.
Mobile Task management
Provision for extending Eclipse-fm® Mobile Task management to make relevant parts of this visible on the mobile device is also under consideration.
Once development is started this new module could be ready for initial usage within a month or two, but this will need a minimum of 5 Trusts to agree to contribute to the funding. The Ipswich NHS Trust has already verbally committed to the development cost share of this new module, and currently there are strong indications that there is sufficient interest to reach the minimum funding needed.
The EBME module will be a specialist interest, and as such it will be available at an extra charge to those who need it. However that extra charge is very low in comparison with a full "EBME only" stand alone system, and of course will have all the benefits of adding into, and benefiting from the existing Eclipse-fm® system and database. A single asset register eliminates much room for duplication and error, and allows for strategic high level management of the whole trust maintenance effort. For the EBME specialist, no worries about getting bogged down in mundane general PPMs - remember you can set particular users to only see "their" tasks, so for them, Eclipse-fm® EBME will be only an EBME system.
Where Eclipse-fm® in general will benefit in the future is that there are undoubtedly some elements of the EBME specifics that could be of benefit, and where these can be identified they will find their way into the general product.
Do you have an EBME interest? If you are not aware of these developments and would like to know more, call us on 0845 2707747. We would especially like to hear from you if EBME management is something you need, whether or not you already use Eclipse-fm®.
|Eclipse-fm® Feedback Group Meeting
A very productive meeting was held in May, during which positive feedback was given on the features in version 5.0. Also many useful and trust budget saving suggestions were brought forward, these will be reviewed for inclusion in a future release of Eclipse-fm® .
For those who had the misfortune to miss the meeting the minutes are available on the discussion board.
No new modules are planned for the main product (but see EBME above) but the addition of new features will noticeably improve usability in several areas.
Configurable Enquiry Views
In addition to the usual column sorting, you will be able to extensively reconfigure these:-
(These screen images are from the initial prototype currently under way - some facilities are not yet included, some that are may not be in the actual release!)
Just drag a column header right out of the grid to remove a column
|Organise by Column
Drag a column header into the space above, and the grid will show groupings for that value. Drag another column header into that space, and you now have groups within groups
Right mouse click gives a menu of options - including the field Chooser and a restore to default layout which is probably just as well!
Or if you want to just get back one or two fields you have hidden, field chooser lets you do this
A Freeze Column option keeps all columns to the left frozen, allowing columns to the right to scroll horizontally while the leftmost column(s) remain visible.
If you have made any changes and then then drop the View, when you get it back it will remember all your settings
Instead of the row of buttons down the right of a view, these will now be contained in the floating (right click) menu when appropriate.
With those as the major "interesting" items, as always the group discussed a whole range of suggestions, niggles and ideas. As examples of the detail to which this goes:-
Task Tickets Helpdesk - Can we move the NEW button to the right of the OK button to prevent entered details being incorrectly erased? Asckey agreed to investigate the changing of the view buttons to make them more consistent throughout the system.
Task Enquiry - We understood that the ability to cancel or complete multiple tickets from the Enquiry view would be added to the system? Asckey informed the group that the ability to cancel tickets was already a feature of the task enquiry view. The completing of tickets would be added to the next version of the application as part of the task enquiry development.
Task Templates - Can we have the Retain common fields option for templates? Asckey informed the group that as the task template view was planned to be split into two views, the retain common fields option would be added as part of the task template view.
Task Templates - Could we increase the search options on Task Template? We would like to be able to search to find active templates for a particular occupation for a particular area. Asckey informed the group that this would be part of the Template Enquiry View.
Far too many to reproduce all such here, but examples of how Eclipse-fm® features evolve and the work that your feedback group does! You can access the full Feedback group minutes via the Eclipse-fm®
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