Hippo CMMS Renovations

Hippo CMMS, MMP’s sister company, is not your average Computerized Maintenance Management System (CMMS) business. With their renovation of the 4th floor at 123 Bannatyne Ave., the Hippo Management team hoped to provide an uplifting and creative workspace for their 20 young and energetic staff. The overall concept was to maintain the character of the 100 year old building while providing a modern industrial feel.

The Hippo CMMS team moved from their temporary space into their new space last week. Their newly renovated office now features multiple gathering spaces and breakout rooms for casual meetings, a large boardroom for more formal meetings, and height adjustable desks for all staff. The renovation ties in Hippo’s brand identity through the inclusion of a number of feature walls in Hippo blue, as well as through a 75+ foot mural painted by Winnipeg’s Grafitti Gallery curator and artistic director, Pat Lazo.

Please see above for a few photos of the newly renovated Hippo CMMS space.

Hippo CMMS Renovation Team
Principal Architect: Chris Daly
Director of Design: Russell Krepart
Interior Designer / Contract Administration: Kristin Reischek
Senior Technologist: Mike Karakas

The Benefits of Having Architectural Drawings Included in Your CMMS

Prior to the introduction of Computer Maintenance Management Software (CMMS) into the marketplace in the 1980’s, maintenance data were generally recorded manually with a pencil and paper. Since that time, a growing number of companies have chosen to trade in the pencil and paper approach for sophisticated and robust facilities management software systems. Current CMMS systems offer businesses the ability to track work orders, generate accurate reports, and receive real time notifications on which assets require preventive maintenance. This improvement has led to extended equipment lifespans, better time management and labor utilization and ultimately, reduced costs and increased profits.

Over time, the CMMS industry has continued to evolve by responding to the ever-changing needs of customer demands. Recent innovations include secure cloud based interfaces, mobile device accessibility and paperless functionality that further increases ease of use. While there is a considerable overlap between CMMS and facilities management software, it is important to note that not all software systems are the same. The disparity between the two systems becomes evident when one considers that many CMMS systems focus primarily on maintenance whereas facilities management systems generally focus on event planning, room booking and space planning. Typically, most maintenance management systems do not have floor plans integrated into their platforms. Customers seeking a more encompassing CMMS, should consider those that incorporate architectural or schematic drawings as part of its offering.

An architectural drawing is a rendering of an architectural design as plan and/or elevation views of a building or structure. Of interest to organization maintenance and management, architectural drawings also provide details within a structure – e.g., the placements of HVAC, plumbing, electrical, entrance doorways, sprinkler system etc. The benefits of including architectural drawings in a comprehensive CMMS system are outlined below:

Architectural drawings are a useful tool when it comes to planning, allocating and resourcing equipment and supplies in large organizations; particularly those with more than one facility. When multiple facilities are involved, identifying where specific items are located is made easier by viewing the schematic drawings rather than having to physically tour each facility. Moreover, when there is a need to replace a large piece of equipment and / or add large quantities of supplies within a facility, these drawings are helpful in determining appropriate space allocation. Finally, new employees can also familiarize themselves with building layouts and asset placements without having to be physically within the space.

Since CMMS databases can contain thousands of data points representing an organization’s assets and equipment, it is helpful to be able to view these as well as supply levels on an architectural drawing rather than in a spreadsheet format alone. Exact locations can be highlighted on the drawings. An integrated CMMS system can provide critical information about assets, equipment and supplies in both text and drawing formats.


Organizations, large and small, all value safety and security for their employees and their assets. Being informed and able to react to emergencies such as water and roof damage, fires, alarms (real and false) etc. require a quick response. Architectural drawings identify the locations of fire escapes and extinguishers, sprinkler systems, alarm system touch pads as well as the fastest routes out of buildings. These allocations can assist an organization in both maintenance and security measures and in doing so, save time, money, and lives.

A benefit of having architectural drawings as part of an integrated CMMS system is being able to identify the precise location of maintenance requirements. In these types of systems, work orders are highlighted on floor plans. This eliminates confusion and increases efficiency for service providers. The benefit is straightforward; zeroing in on the exact locations of repairs, inspections and supplies placement saves time and money. This is an ideal solution for large facilities.

People process information is different ways. Some people rely on auditory learning (hearing), while others rely on kinesthetic (touching) or visual learning (seeing) approaches. With respect to the latter, it is estimated that visual learners make up 40-65% of the population. According to Terry Farwell of Family Education.com, this group of people benefits most from exposure to diagrams, charts, pictures, films, and written directions. Differences in learning styles and a desire to meet the needs of all software users are important considerations when selecting a CMMS system. For example, while many maintenance software users work best using spreadsheet or text formats, other users do better with visual or schematic aids. When it comes to maintenance software systems, having architectural drawings will assist visual users to understand the bigger picture and put things into a perspective that is most meaningful to them. Given the differences in how people process information, having architectural drawings that identify an organization’s layout, specifications and assets are of great assistance to the large number of CMMS users who do best processing visually.

For more information about Hippo CMMS and its products, visit www.hippocmms.com.
This was a guest post written by Reena Sommer, PhD.

Hippo CMMS - An Origin Story

MMP Architects employs an array of talented and creative individuals, with passions and interests that extend beyond design. Such is the case with MMP Principal Architect Robert (Bob) Wrublowsky. In addition to being a 24-year architecture veteran, Bob is also known as an amateur coder with an interest in software development. 20 years ago, this interest was the driving force behind a venture into the maintenance management software world, known today as Hippo CMMS. 

Hippo CMMS specializes in user-friendly work order management, preventive maintenance, and asset/ equipment management for a variety of industries. With over 400 clients around the world and significant employee growth (the team is now at 15 full time staff members), Hippo’s simple roots have sprouted into an impressive software force. But to truly understand where Hippo is headed, we need first explain where it came from. The following is the Hippo CMMS origin story.

With a mandate to “push the envelope of contemporary design”, MMP has always valued innovation and a polished client experience. In the pursuit of providing added client value to their busy architectural projects, they tasked a young intern, Bob Wrublowsky, to find and implement automated facilities management. Bob began by teaching himself current computerized maintenance management systems (CMMS) and referring them to clients looking to track building maintenance. During this time, Bob found numerous gaps between the products that were available and the needs of his clients.  

Bob explained, “I believed the market badly needed a better software to create practices that would optimize the life-cycle and reduce the total cost of ownership for the buildings we were designing.”

With the old adage in mind, Bob decided that in order to deliver the perfect CMMS software to his clients, he would have to create it himself.

The year 2000 was a turning point for the software. Charged to solve a building maintenance concern for Canada Public Works’ Northern School projects, MMP decided to utilize their newly developed facilities management software to combat the rapid deterioration of Sapotawaeyak Cree Nation School. This $32 million school would become Hippo’s first pilot project.

To ensure that the software met the unique needs of the project, Bob worked closely with software programmers to refine code and modify its interface. They determined that in order for the project to succeed, specific criteria such as a graphical and user-friendly interface, reporting system, document and image storing, and scalability, must be implemented.

These founding principles still guide Hippo’s software development today. Hippo’s Advanced Dash system is the result of the original graphical user-interface, creating the first and only graphical CMMS on the market today. In addition, its user-friendly appeal makes the software accessible for a variety of technical skill levels, while the unique pricing structure allows multi-site operations the affordability they need to capture all maintenance data.

These product guidelines set the stage for the first version of the software launched in 2002. Branded with the name OMISI - Cree for “show me how”-   the software was well received by the client and went on to be installed in later First Nation Northern School Projects. Following the Sapotawaeyak launch, Opaskwayak Cree Nation high school "Oscar Lathlin" was the second school project to receive OMISI.

As the popularity of the software grew among MMP’s client base, the developers realized that this graphical product had the potential of wider market appeal. In 2004, the firm agreed that OMISI needed a name change if it was to carry mass appeal.

Bob explained, “We selected Hippo as the name through a series of late night conferences and brainstorming about how to relaunch the product. We were looking for a symbol that represented unassuming strength, something not overwhelming or overly energized, but something that would conjure images of power and mass.” The idea to call the product Hippo FM came to life when they brainstormed the thought of software designed to keep maintenance manager’s "heads above water" through the ease of tracking PM activities. At the time, the team also decided that they tag FM or facility management at the end of Hippo to indicate the software’s functionality as an umbrella term.

Product awareness quickly grew and Hippo FM found itself in new local industries. The Winnipeg Regional Health Authority, which operates all health centres in Winnipeg, opted to use Hippo as their CMMS solution. In 2008, knowing that product popularity and the industry was sure to grow exponentially over the coming years, the owners decided to allocate a dedicated team of Hippo software staff to oversee product development. Three associates, working out of the MMP office, were the first members of Hippo’s evolving team. The next three years would see several strategy changes, numerous software versions, and 200% client growth.

Growing to a team of seven in 2013, the group decided they had outlived their capacity in the MMP office and moved into their very own Hippo headquarters (located conveniently in the vacant suite below MMP’s). Hippo received a total makeover in 2014 with the launch of its new re-brand and updated website. In addition to the aesthetic upgrade, the marketing team opted for a slight name change; dropping the FM in place of a more descriptive title- CMMS. Hippo CMMS, as we know it today, was born!

Bob continues to provide support and strategic leadership to the Hippo CMMS crew. With the help of his leadership and new investment partners, Hippo CMMS has grown to have over 400 clients and an impressive 18,000+ users from a variety of industries. With no signs of slowing down, Hippo is excited to continue this growth well into the future.

For more information about Hippo CMMS and its products, visit www.hippocmms.com.
This was a guest post written by Margeaux Girardin, Hippo CMMS Marketing Coordinator.