J.J. McDonnell

How one seafood processing company kept operations from going “belly up” with the Fiix CMMS

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Mark Garner headshot

Mark Garner

Facilities and Maintenance Manager

J.J. McDonnell & Co Inc.

The challenge

  • Frequent equipment breakdowns
  • Lots of reactive maintenance
  • Increased labor costs, decreased processes
  • Operational disruptions that lead to lots of downtime

The solution

  • Fiix CMMS
    • Mobile app
    • Work order management
    • Scheduled Maintenance
    • Parts inventory and purchasing

The result

  • 83% of work orders throughout the year are planned maintenance
  • Reduced reactive maintenance to 17%
  • Reduced equipment downtime, lower labor costs, and increased operational efficiency
  • Higher employee satisfaction levels and the company's ability to meet customer demands improved significantly

About J.J. McDonnell

J.J. McDonnell & Co Inc. is a mid-Atlantic seafood distribution and processing company. The company operates two facilities in Maryland, serving clientele from retail giants to local eateries. The facilities work with vendors from across the globe to source seafood products. Once they’re delivered to the facility, JJ McDonnell handles the processing, packaging, and distribution of the seafood.

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Riding the waves of unreliability

The team often found itself battling recurring equipment breakdowns, resulting in high levels of reactive maintenance, leading to disrupted workflow, labor inefficiencies, and financial losses. “If you're not keeping up with maintenance, it really will cause some disturbances," says Mark Garner, Maintenance and Facilities Manager at J.J. McDonnell & Co.

Quality and freshness are of the utmost importance, so any kind of disturbance to the process not only costs time but also has a huge financial impact, resulting in delayed deliveries and wasted products and resources.

On top of reactive maintenance, they were dealing with scattered parts inventory, managed on paper. This also impacted on their ability to proactively address maintenance needs. Most of their maintenance was outsourced or contracted out so they never developed a standardized way to deal with these issues. “You're scrambling trying to find parts if you don't have them, and we were using paper to track parts,” says Mark.

Casting the line and reeling in the big catch

The implementation of Fiix CMMS marked a turning point for J.J. McDonnell & Co Inc.

Using the Fiix CMMS was their first step to transition operations from reactive to proactive maintenance, “having it organized through Fiix has allowed us to just really become more effective,” Mark says.

The transition from paper-based tracking to digital maintenance revolutionized everything from workflow efficiency, and accountability to keeping production on track with minimal reactive maintenance.

Reduced equipment downtime, improved productivity, and proactive maintenance strategies became hallmarks of the company's operational excellence. In just a short period of time, the maintenance team achieved 83% planned maintenance, reducing reactive maintenance to just 17%.

Not only were they being more proactive, but the CMMS gave them access to real-time information and streamlined information, so employees and contractors all have access to the same resources for better-informed decision-making.

When asked what advice Mark would give to other maintenance managers looking to adopt a CMMS, he said.

Apply yourself. Just be willing to learn something new.

As they continue their journey towards operational excellence, the Fiix CMMS will serve as the foundation for a fully transformed maintenance operation in the future.

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