Are your building inspections standardized? If you don’t have building maintenance software, they probably aren’t. And you’re likely missing costly problems.

Without routine inspections, building issues slip through the cracks. Instead of catching a minor problem when it starts, it goes undetected until it’s an expensive fix or replacement.

So having a standardized inspection and evaluation process for every property is vital for keeping them in top shape. It ensures you’re always aware of the condition of your property, and you’re able to fix things before they cause problems.

You can manually create an inspection process. But tracking the results by hand, and making sure every employee follows the process is laborious.

Using building maintenance software, a.k.a. building operations software, automates the process for you. And it provides visibility into the condition of every property. Here’s how to use building maintenance software to avoid costly repairs and keep your buildings in top shape.

Engineer using building maintenance software

Step 1: Make an Inspection Template

If you don’t already have one, you need a standard commercial building inspection process. Without a standardized inspection process, inspections can collect vastly different data. This prevents you from keeping track of how property conditions are changing.

And it makes it easy to miss areas of your building. One area might need maintenance, but your team sometimes forgets about it on inspections. So you have to replace equipment that could have been repaired if the issue was caught sooner.

You can avoid this by creating a standardized inspection template, so building inspections don’t miss any areas. Creating an inspection template starts with listing questions that address all areas of your buildings. These questions can be fill-in-the-blank, checkbox, or even short answer questions.

Whatever format you choose, make sure your template is comprehensive but simple. So if a team uses the template to complete inspections, they cover the entirety of the building, and report all crucial information.

You can manually brainstorm these questions and format the template, or building maintenance software can do it for you. Building inspections tools offer a variety of question styles and pre-made templates. So creating your own inspection template a breeze.

Inspection software also allows you to upload pictures and create work orders. Then if your team finds an issue, it can be addressed immediately—saving you money on repairs.

Creating an inspection template is the first step in standardizing and evaluating the condition of your properties.

Step 2: Set Inspection Targets

Beyond creating a standardized method for inspecting properties, you need to ensure inspections are actually done. An inspection template is useless if it’s not followed. You can give it to your team, but there’s no guarantee they’ll follow through on it. Or do so as thoroughly as you want.

The solution is to create inspection targets your team has to meet. Set dates for routine inspections, deadlines for ad hoc inspections, and inspection thoroughness targets. This ensures your team performs inspections regularly, and to the level you require.

Bear in mind that tracking inspection targets can be complicated and time-consuming. You have to check in with every team member and monitor their progress.

With inspection software however, it takes no time to manage these targets. Instead, building engineers input what they’ve done, and you view it right from your software. And you can automate reminders and notifications to keep your team on track.

Inspection targets ensure you routinely get inspection data, which is the second step to effectively evaluating the condition of your properties.

Step 3: Monitor the Condition of Your Properties

The last step to staying on top of a building’s condition is to monitor inspection data. This way you know which properties are in good condition and which need extra attention.

Collecting inspection data is important, but gaining building insights from it is key. Otherwise you’re just wasting time and resources doing inspections, creating data that collects dust in filing cabinets or computer folders. You won’t get ahead of problems, or save money by solving them early.

How do you evaluate inspection data?

You need to find trends. Look for changes over time in equipment or overall building condition. If one area of a building suddenly starts underperforming, it’s likely you have a problem. And you can compare buildings to see if certain ones over- or underperform. This allows you to make changes to buildings to have them at peak efficiency.

To find trends in the data, you need inspection summaries, reports, and analyses. Compiling these yourself is a major time-suck.

But inspection software can automatically generate summaries, reports, and analyses for you. And help you see trends you might have missed, so you can fix problems before they become expensive.

Evaluating data from your inspections is the final step in standardizing and evaluating property conditions.

Building Maintenance Software Makes Life Better

Knowing a building’s condition is essential for maintaining high performance with low costs. But if you have a haphazard inspection plan and no way to put data to work, you’ll never accurately know what condition your properties are in. This almost guarantees you’ll miss some problems until they’re expensive to address.

Standardizing inspections, setting inspection targets, and analyzing inspection data ensures you stay informed about your buildings. So you can make your buildings more efficient and profitable.

But standardizing and evaluating buildings’ condition manually is time-consuming and doesn’t always produce accurate results. Inspection software automates this process. It makes it easy to conduct information-rich inspections and get effective insights from the resulting data.

Do you want to take your inspections and preventive maintenance to the next level? Check out Building Engines’ free guide: Take a Tenant-Centric Approach to Building Maintenance and Inspections.