Maintenance keeps the camp-resort aesthetically attractive and
insures that equipment and facilities are properly maintained and
operated to adequately serve the customers. As a franchisee of this
system, it is your responsibility to ensure that every effort is
made to establish and follow proper maintenance guidelines.
Maintenance is the part of camp-resort management, which keeps
the product and its package attractive and marketable. In terms
of cost in labor and equipment, it is often the major overhead of
the camp-resort. However proper maintenance is what preserves the
value of the assets of the camp-resort.
A good maintenance program has economic benefits. Daily maintenance
procedures, properly performed, reduce man-hours and increases productivity.
Preventive maintenance lowers overall costs that result from neglected
repairs. A continuing program of ground and building maintenance,
(mowing, weeding, planting, trimming and cleaning), will keep the
camp-resort attractive to its customers. Maintenance and quick repair
service to those items used by the customer insures a pleasant stay
and a satisfied customer.
A good maintenance program is also a good public relations program.
There is nothing that upsets a camper more than to have paid full
fee to camp and not have the facilities fully operational, especially
if it is a result of routine maintenance. Also, having a maintenance
plan that can react quickly and efficiently when a camper brings
attention to an issue, which needs repair, makes a strong statement
for customer satisfaction and will illicit support among your campers
for your management and camping business.
There are five basic types of maintenance necessary to keep a camp-resort
attractive, clean and operating properly.
Eight principals of maintenance that are designed to achieve maximum
results with minimum expenditures of manpower and money are as follows:
1. Purposes and Planning
Planning for maintenance has three main benefits. First, it provides
a systematic approach to the project accomplishments and identifies
lines of responsibilities and control of work assignments. Second,
planning provides a sound method of justifying expenses by providing
a basis for budgeting, cost accounting, and procedural analysis
to reduce costs. Third, planning facilitates communication between
people in all parts of your park's operation.
2. Organization and Staffing
Establish priorities and set up a system of inspection and reporting.
Without this management decision, maintenance of buildings can
quickly become a "slipshod" operation. If employees
get orders to just keep things "shipshape," they will
naturally set their own priorities.
Personnel in charge of daily cleaning can carry a check- list
which has an order of maintenance priorities and personnel assigned
to the various areas of responsibility. This report sheet is put
in a designated place and maintenance personnel initial the various
jobs and get them done according to the management established
3. Maintenance Standards
Maintenance standards rest with one person, the manager or owner,
who must put them in writing for the maintenance staff. The quality
of their work must be based upon what the manager wants, not what
they consider to be adequate. Close involvement and frequent communication
helps establish the priorities of the owner or manager. Management
must reinforce positive priorities on a regular basis so as to
communicate the importance to the overall operation. Keep the
staff informed as to their progress in accomplishing maintenance
4. Measuring & Evaluating
This is one of the most important aspects of organizing and running
a successful business. This is how you assure yourself that all
the plans and procedures you have developed and implemented are
working and meeting their goals. This is your quality control
to evaluate training effectiveness and worker performance. Without
this step you may know where you want to go but will not know
if in fact you are heading there. This needs to be a positive
and communication's enhancing tool. Employee feedback will
tell you what works and does not work. This is how you modify
and develop a successful business.
5. Facility and Equipment Inventory
The aversion to paper work often leads to less than adequate
maintenance programs. A certain amount of record keeping is necessary
for proper maintenance. If this isn't a priority for the
owner/manager and reviewed on frequent basis it will not be a
priority for your employees!
Facility and equipment inventory of a camp-resort is necessary
and valuable. There are two basic inventories. One, of the assets
in use should be as complete as possible even though each employee
knows there are a camp store and a camp office. There is flexibility
in what information should be included in the inventory, but all
items requiring maintenance or repair should be listed. The following
is an example of some of the listings:
- Electrical distribution panel: fuse, fustat, or circuit
- Lights: 4-foot fluorescent.
- Water: location of cutoff valve.
b. The inventory should list the electrical connections in
the campsites, whether they are 20, 30 and/or 50 amp service.
General lighting: whether incandescent, mercury vapor or sodium
vapor lights are used.
c. The equipment and spare parts inventory is more important
than the general facility inventory. All power equipment, tractors,
mowers, attachments, etc., should be listed by manufacturer.
Tools on hand should be listed.
d. List commonly needed spare parts in a separate inventory,
which contains a column to indicate number in stock and a minimum
inventory at which time new replacements should be ordered.
6. Maintenance Task Identification
A listing is made of each area of maintenance. This list includes
electrical, water and sewage. Building maintenance includes daily
cleaning, periodic floor waxing, window cleaning, etc. Outside
is daily sweeping of high traffic area, trash pickup, grass cutting,
tree pruning, hedge clipping, etc. And finally, equipment maintenance
Once the master listing is made, break it down by category. Employees
should be issued copies of maintenance schedules for which they
will be responsible. Beside each entry, list the maintenance to
be done and the frequency. An entry might read this way:
Roadside from entry: Semi weekly.
Campsites: Daily inspection after departure time. Mow as needed.
Baseball diamond: Weekly.
High traffic area in camp: Weekly or as needed.
Fields adjacent: Every other week.
Mower, 11 Hp. Tractor
Beginning of season: Replace points and condenser. Clean carburetor.
Replace spark plug. Sharpen blades. Replace if necessary. Check
belts. Replace if necessary. Change oil. Check battery level
20-hour maintenance: Change oil and clean spark plug.
Monthly: Check belts, replace if necessary. Sharpen blade if
necessary. Check battery acid level.
End of season: Drain and replace oil. Remove spark plug and
fill cylinder with oil (approximately 1/2 pint). Charge battery
and move to warm place. Check belts. Paint chassis if necessary.
By detailed instructions, each employee knows what part of the
camp-resort he is responsible for. Impress on the employee that
this is his responsibility and contribution to the success of
the camp-resort. It improves the level of maintenance, and gives
the employee a feeling of genuine contribution, which increases
A master maintenance calendar is helpful in scheduling periodic
recurring maintenance. In addition, equipment that requires periodic
maintenance should have a maintenance form for noting when maintenance
is done. Attach to it a photocopy of the manufacturers recommendations
found in the instruction manual.
Non-routine and non-recurring maintenance schedules are difficult
to schedule on any long-range basis. Often it's a matter
of building up a reserve fund for major maintenance programs and
carrying out the programs as the need arises.
7. Responsibility for Maintenance
It is a good management practice to give an employee a job and
the responsibility to get it done. Match skills with the jobs,
and if necessary, train people for specific jobs. If certain maintenance
jobs require less than a day or week of work, try to match a dull,
monotonous job with an interesting one that requires the employee
to use some judgment.
A camp-resort runs best when employees have responsibilities
and the time to carry them out. The camp-resort manager should
make assignments on the basis of estimated time required. Plan
work sheets for a specific period of time to determine just how
long a project takes. Allow more time for improvements or expansion.
Each employee should be assigned a day's work, and the manager
should observe each employee's work to see where time can
be cut, or methods can be improved. Make communication a two way
street. The person responsible for doing the job can provide valuable
input when planning and evaluating schedules and procedures.
Staff meetings should be held to open lines of communication.
Employees should be encouraged to give assessments of their jobs
and suggestions for improving productivity. When the season begins,
it may take some time to iron out all the problems, but with sensible
assignments and staff meetings a smooth operation can be developed
8. Maintenance Cost Analysis
An ongoing analysis of costs is essential for a profitable operation.
Accurate time sheets must be kept by each employee indicating
when he started a job and when it was finished. There should also
be a place on the time sheet to record the supplies used.
Occasionally, a total should be taken of the employee time and
cost allocated to each maintenance project. Track the employee's
productivity and the cost of various services provided through
cost accounting and budgeting.
9. Use of Outside Services
Economics is not the only factor when considering the use of
outside contractors for daily or weekly maintenance. Convenience
and service to campers must also be considered.
Good records are essential to an intelligent decision. If a cost
analysis shows that contracting one or more services could save
money, then the other two factors are brought in. These questions
should be asked: Will using a contractor be as convenient to the
management and the campers as in-house maintenance? Will it maintain
the services to the campers? The decision lies with the management.
10. Maintenance Files
A file should be kept which contains all of the building blueprints,
camp-resort layout, and instruction manuals for all equipment.
11. Fire Protection Plan
Every effort should be made to protect buildings and wooded areas
from fire. State law mandates certain requirements, but these
vary widely from state to state. In protecting buildings, it is
well to go beyond minimum requirements and also protect lives
through use of sprinkler systems, smoke alarms, and other safety
A plan of action should be drawn up for all employees in case
of fire. A local alarm system is advisable. When the alarm is
sounded, each employee should know exactly what to do.
Information on fire protection plans is available from the office
of the fire marshal, local volunteer fire companies, and the National
Fire Protection Association.
12. Care of Equipment
Reasonable care of equipment adds to their longevity. Preventive
maintenance can keep power equipment and hand tools in satisfactory
condition for years after their rated life span. Some preventive
Gasoline powered tools - Clean after each use. Sharpen blades
as needed for effective operation. At end of season, 4-cycle engines
should be drained, rinsed with kerosene, and new oil added. Remove
plug and pour oil into cylinder(s). Rust spots should be sanded
and repainted, mower decks and other attachments cleaned and adjusted.
Hand tools - Clean after each use. At end of season, coat with
thin film of oil and put in toolboxes. Wooden handled tools should
be sanded and shellacked.
Electric power tools - Clean after each use. Oil and put away
at end of season. Put thin coat of oil on metal parts, blades,
etc. Do not oil plastic shell of double insulated tools.
Major cleaning machines - such as vacuum cleaners, floor polishers,
and scrubbers, should be kept in a central location where they
can be maintained in good condition. It is more economical and
time saving, however, for ordinary pieces of cleaning equipment
-- mops, brooms, brushes, and supplies -- to be kept in each building.
To check supplies, have cleaning personnel issue requests for
supplies on a purchase order.
13. Repairs and Replace Equipment
For maximum efficiency, all equipment should be in good repair
at all times. Where the small camp-resort doesn't have full
time repair and maintenance personnel for the equipment, some
responsibility must be delegated for this job. If equipment needs
repair, either repair it or take it to a repair shop. The choice
between in-house or outside repair will depend on the cost effectiveness.
14. Facilities for Equipment Storage and Use
Establish a maintenance center. It presents a neater appearance
to have one building set aside for maintenance. Make it a substantial
building where all equipment can be kept out of the weather. Provide
racks and cabinets for tool storage.
The current state of the art in CB radio makes it possible to
put together an inexpensive yet effective communication system.
A base station in the office and the maintenance yard, and portable
units in trucks and on belts help keep track of where people are
and makes them available at a moment's notice.
Maintenance schedules and duties vary by park and staff size, however
every park must have basic checklists and schedules if you plan
to operate a well-maintained park and eliminate crisis management
and roller coaster spending. For a sample of an actual guideline
used by a Jellystone Park in their daily operation, please refer
to "Sample Park Maintenance Schedule" below.
Finally, all employees should have a supply of "Maintenance
Request" or "Work Order" forms that are turned
in daily so that you can keep on top of all the small projects that
will not eventually turn into an insurmountable number of projects
and a run down facility, please refer to the three "Work Order"
forms below. If nothing else, have your staff write down any problem
in the park on a piece of paper and turn it in at the end of their
shift to the manager in charge.