YMCA of Delaware Sees Millions in Cost Avoidance in Over a Decade with Brightly
One of the YMCA of Delaware locations
For more than 12 years, Chris Ryan has been building his workday around Brightly. And he’s seen some significant savings over the years. As the Group Vice President, Buildings and Properties at YMCA of Delaware, Brightly software is key to staying organized and efficient. It’s allowed him to achieve:
- More than $1.5 million in operations savings
- $263,000 under budget on facilities operating expenses in 2017
- 26% reduction in energy costs compared to 2008
- 10% reduction in total electric use from 2010-2016
- 5% reduction in total gas use from 2015-2017
When Chris started with the Y, he was hired to centralize all the facilities operations across the organization.
“What I walked into was each branch operating independently from a facilities perspective. There was no consistency in programming, staffing, supplies, maintenance operations, PM,” Chris says. “It was a challenging task that required a significant amount of change, culturally and operationally.”
Chris says they had no method for tracking, controlling or managing, basic corrective work requests – “all the things that a facility maintenance software can achieve for an organization.” This led to a lot of frustrations organizationally about follow-through and timeliness of completion. Thankfully, leadership supported making a change and implementing new technology.
When it came time to select a software provider, Chris pulled from his past experience with Brightly for Education, formerly SchoolDude, even though he’s had experience with about 6 different facility management software systems.
“It’s extremely intuitive and easy to use. And it’s easy to implement for that reason,” Chris says of why they chose Brightly. “The way you set up your locations, branches, users – it’s all very user friendly and uncomplicated to set up, implement and train on. For people with no experience with this type of software, it’s very easy for them to utilize.”
Some serious stats
The difference between before Brightly and after is clear, as Chris points out.
In 2007, when they first implemented their work request system through Brightly, they completed 3,744 work requests. In 2018, they completed 11,209, an almost 3x increase. Overall, they’ve completed more than 70,000 work requests within the system.
“Every year this organization has completed more work requests and been far more productive than the prior year,” he says.
In fact, in 2017, 96% of their corrective work orders (those submitted by staff) were completed on time, which ranks in the top 2% of best performing YMCAs in the world.
Improving their preventive maintenance program has made a big impact in those numbers, Chris says. “We’ve become more proactive and preventive over the years.”
Smartly saving energy
And it doesn’t stop with maintenance. Chris has used Brightly’s utility tracking software to help them save significantly when it comes to their energy costs and efficiencies.
From being $189,000 under budget on utility expenses in 2017 to reducing total gas and electric use, Brightly is helping YMCA of Delaware better understand their energy use so they can save.
A graph from Chris’s annual report showing a decline in energy costs
Chris uses the data from the system to see which locations are more or less efficient and make budgetary decisions from that data.
“I have shown significant and drastic reductions in energy from year to year,” he says.
Data drives annual report
Speaking of gathering data, Chris not only uses his data out of Brightly to make daily decisions, but also to create his annual report.
This is a 25+ page report filled with useful information, graphs, KPIs, savings, photos and project details that he presents annually to the board and each individual location’s board. He has improved the reports over the years by presenting information more visually, using Brightly's data intelligence tool to grab charts and graphs.
A set of project images from the annual report
“The information that I have in [the software] helps me explain to the organization what is actually going on,” Chris says.
He not only uses the data to support his team and praise their productivity, but he can also make critical operations decisions from it. For example, he tracks all work orders by craft to help understand how many HVAC or pool-related requests they generate and complete. This is useful information if they have an opportunity to add resources or staffing, so they can know right where they need help.
“If you put good information in, you can extract good information,” he says.
In the software, Chris tracks the following KPIs at each location or branch (some for more than a decade):
- Supply cost/sq. ft. or member
- Repair supply cost/sq. ft. or member
- Salary cost/sq. ft.
- Total facility cost/sq. ft.
- Electric and gas use
A set of graphs from Chris’s annual report showing work completed in 2017
One more thing
One more reason why they’ve chosen to stay with Brightly for the long term is the level of support.
Brightly has been my number-one rated outsourced vendor that I’ve worked with in my career.
"The level of support is unparalleled in the industry," Chris says.
From calling support to using the chat feature, Chris and his team have benefitted from the quick help.