A Work Order: What It Is and Why It Matters

by Maya G

A work order is a document that outlines the specifics of an assignment. For example, work orders typically include details about what materials will be needed, the estimated time to complete the task, and often who needs to sign off on the work order before it can be achieved. This includes what materials, equipment, and people are required for the job and any specific requirements or restrictions that need to be met.

Work Order, MS Excel, Work Order Excel Template

A work order can also include details about cost estimates and deadlines, which helps ensure all parties involved in completing the assignment know what's expected of them and when they will be done.

Purpose Of Work Order:

1. The first step in our process is to standardize your workflow. This involves tracking and managing all tasks related to maintaining your assets.

2. The second step is having a quick and straightforward way of scheduling, assigning, and tracking work, documenting resources spent on maintenance (labor costs associated with performed work), and monitoring maintenance performance (maintenance compliance).

3. The three steps outlined above ensure an accurate record of what has been done on each asset when it comes time to report.

The Different Types Of Maintenance Work Orders:

The Different Types of Maintenance Work Orders

Maintenance work orders are a necessary part of owning and operating commercial property. They help ensure that your property is always in top condition, so you don't have to deal with costly repairs or unexpected downtime.

Work orders can be categorized based on the type of problem that needs to be addressed.

1. Unplanned Work Orders: Are a type of reactive maintenance. They are used to address unexpected issues that emerge, such as unexpected machine breakdowns or production line shutdowns due to equipment failure. Unplanned work orders have the following benefits:

  • Equipped with detailed problem descriptions for technicians and engineers.
  • Reduces time spent figuring out what's broken.
  • Detailed information about problems enables better planning (i.e., scheduling downtime) when it comes time for repairs/replacements.

2. A Planned Work Order: This is a document that outlines what work will be done on a project, how the work will be accomplished, and by whom. It can also identify any contingencies or risks involved with the task. Work orders are typically processed through an online system to manage tasks and keep track of their progress.

Depending Upon The Work Request:

1. External Work Orders: are the result of requests coming from someone outside your organization. These could be a customer asking for repairs or another company that wants to subcontract with you for an upcoming project.

2. Internal Work Orders: come about because of employees requesting assistance with their job tasks.

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Based On Schedule

1. Manual Work Orders: Can be scheduled by hand. This allows the manager to control when WOs are being worked on and who is working on them. However, this method requires a lot of time management skills from both managers and employees! It also means that holidays or weekends could potentially result in lost revenue since there's no one available to take care of problems at those times.

2. Automatic Work Orders: With automated work order software, you avoid all these issues because it will automatically schedule your WOs based on data coming from condition monitoring sensors installed on equipment (or other factors).

What Should Be Included In A Maintenance Work Order?

1. Who Requested and Approved the Work in Work Order - When a work order is created, it's essential to know who asked and supported the work? This information can be added to the service request description or notes within the work order itself. Keep track of this information, so you're able to identify who was responsible for approving task assignments on your team.

2. Job Description - A job description explains an employee's position, their duties and responsibilities, and what qualifications are needed for the position. The work order is a document that contains information about an assignment or project, such as the name of the person who needs it completed, its purpose, deadline date, expected outcomes or deliverables, and any other pertinent information.

3. Asset Location and ID - Asset location and ID are two of the essential parts of a Work Order. The Asset Location is where the asset will always be located, while the ID number identifies that particular asset in your company's system. Therefore, it's essential to have these accurately filled out so you can find what you're looking for when it comes time to do inventory or move an item from one place to another.

4. Who Is Performing Work - To have a successful project, who is performing the work?

5. The Due Date – Due Date tells you how much time there is between now and when your work order will expire. If this happens before your task has been completed, then you need to reassign or extend that task.

6. Priority Level - It is essential to know what a work order priority level means for your business. Work orders come with different levels of urgency and knowing which one you have can help you make the appropriate decisions for managing your projects. So, you don't miss your deadline!

7. The Necessary Materials and Spare Parts in a Work Order - the most important documents that a company relies on when it needs to order materials and spare parts. They ensure that all the required supplies will be at hand for when employees need them to continue their work with minimal disruption. In this article, we have compiled a list of some of the necessities in a work order, including:

  • List of materials and spare parts required.
  • How often supplies should be ordered based on usage rates.
  • Notes about how many days advance notice an employee should give before running out of materials.
  • Notes about lead times (the amount of time before the supplies arrive once they are ordered) on each material or spare part requested.
  • Materials and parts lists for a work order should include Any necessary tools required to complete job tasks, including any safety equipment needed.

The Benefit Of Work Order Template:

When you use these templates for your business, you can benefit from 3 key things:

1. You Will Save Time - Having everything laid out for you in advance keeps valuable hours of your time that would otherwise go wasted.

2. They're Organized - It is much easier to find what needs doing when it's organized into steps and categories. This also helps prevent any confusion about priorities or due dates.

3. They Help Prevent Errors - If everyone does their own thing without the template to guide them, mistakes are easy to make. With a work order that has been standardized and is already approved by management, there's no room for error in the day-to-day process of completing tasks.

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