4 min read

What are O&M Manuals for Facilities | The Ultimate Guide

May 22, 2024

Managing and maintaining large facilities is not an easy task. People, machines and equipment need to work in unison to deliver expected results. To achieve this, operations and maintenance (O&M) manuals help administrators standardize various activities to maintain a seamless operation.

An O&M Manual is an indispensable tool for any facility manager. It is meant to provide step-by-step instructions to help engineers and technicians perform their job duties. In addition, it should also include a preventive maintenance section that helps establish the best maintenance practices. O&M users include organizational managers, executives and technicians who use the manual for equipment selection and installation, as well as maintenance technicians who need to troubleshoot problems with existing equipment.

This article will give you an overview of how to create a maintenance manual, tips on what should be included in it and how to ensure its effectiveness.

What are the various types of operations and maintenance manuals?

The following are examples:

  • A single huge document that encapsulates the facility's entire operation
  • A set of manuals for various subsystems and machines
  • Separate manuals for maintenance, operation, installation, support, administration, and so on

What is typically included in an O&M Manual?

To get the most out of your maintenance manual, you need to understand how it is structured. The O&M manual covers everything from equipment specifications to procedure manuals that must be adhered to when performing maintenance on the equipment.

The O&M manual specific to your machines should contain detailed information about the machine components and how they function, engineering drawings, recommended maintenance schedules, troubleshooting procedures, spare parts lists, and PM checklists for important assets. Proper engineering drawings are very important because these serve as a blueprint during installation. OEMs can use this manual to implement any repair or maintenance on-site while saving time and money.

While most manufacturers provide this document free of cost, some charge for it. In such cases, you can purchase it from other vendors or create your own from scratch.

How do we create an Operations and Maintenance Manual?

You will be surprised to know that creating an O&M manual is not a difficult process. There are several templates available online that you can download and use for free. You can also create the manual on your own using Microsoft Word or any other word processing software. 

Several websites provide step-by-step instructions on how to create a machine maintenance manual from scratch. The manuals may vary based upon the type of machine as well as its manufacturer.

How do we ensure the effectiveness of our Operations and Maintenance Manual?

A good O&M manual will include all the information that is needed to keep your machines in top condition. It should also have a troubleshooting section that covers most of the common problems with the machine components as well as their possible solutions. This will help you avoid breakdowns and ensure that your machine runs smoothly throughout its life cycle.

An organized maintenance program will save you time and money in the long run. A well-organized manual will help you troubleshoot any equipment problems more quickly and efficiently. It will also provide a valuable resource for new employees, who can follow the steps to get up to speed quickly.

We have an O&M Manual. What now?

The O&M manual should be kept in a place where it is easily accessible to the maintenance staff. It should be updated regularly and the updates should be distributed to relevant people. Regular maintenance of machines and equipment will help them to last longer and function better. This will also reduce the chances of accidents taking place due to faulty or worn-out parts. 

Some manufacturers sell their products together with a user guide that includes some basic information about how to perform certain operations on the machine. However, you should make sure that your clients receive an O&M manual as well.

It’s important to keep the manual up to date. As the equipment changes or undergoes maintenance, update the manual accordingly. Make sure all operating personnel have a copy of the manual and can access it at any time. To improve efficiency and make sure that your employees are using the right equipment and following company standards, invest in a maintenance management system like FlowPath. These systems are easy to use and help to keep track of all maintenance tasks, including documenting the work in a log or manual.

How can we make the O&M Manual more user-friendly?

The O&M manual can be made more useful by adding some visual aids to it. Adding images and diagrams in the form of pictures and charts will help your users understand various procedures much better. You can also add videos that display how things should be done. This will cut down on training time and make the manual more user-friendly. 

The manual should also include a troubleshooting section that covers all major issues with the machine components as well as possible solutions to them. This will provide an easy fix for most common problems and ensure that your machine runs smoothly throughout its life cycle.

The Operations and Maintenance Manual is one of the most important documents that you should have. It will help you to keep your assets in top condition and ensure that they last for as long as possible. It will also make sure that your machines run at optimum levels, thereby saving time, money and effort. Your facilities team will be happy, which can directly translate into more business for you.

Make the Most of your O&M Manual with FlowPath

All of the processes that we just mentioned can be implemented with the help of FlowPath. Our solution helps you manage physical assets, track inventory, and manage projects with a single software tool. You can use QR Codes to manage assets across your facilities, and scanning them will pull up the detailed asset card in FlowPath with the machine's full history. FlowPath also enables you to seamlessly run detailed reporting across all data that lives in the system, allowing you to easily run an ROI analysis of your assets. 

Schedule a demo today to see what a simplified CMMS can do for your facilities management operation!

About FlowPath

Founded in 2019, FlowPath is a facilities management software that automates work orders, maintenance, communication, notifications, projects, and reporting in a simple-to-use platform that can be leveraged across industries. To learn more, visit

Ready to dive in?

Schedule a demo with our sales team and we can get into your specifics.

By clicking “Accept All Cookies”, you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyze site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts. View our Privacy Policy for more information.