Mark Rolfes, Ashcom’s former Support and Development Manager, and his wife Amy recently joined Open Arms Home for Children as on-site Co-Executive Directors. Upon arriving at the Open Arms facilities in rural Komga, Rolfes realized that his experience at Ashcom would be of immediate benefit in his new position: “While the health and well-being of the kids is our top priority, the orphanage has to run as a business as well. There are 42 employees, 11 buildings, 70 acres of grounds, numerous vehicles and pieces of equipment, and an extensive water system that all need to be managed. In my first few days here, it seemed like stuff was breaking all the time. Two of the four vehicles had problems. Tractors and mowers were broken and left in disrepair. There were multiple plumbing leaks that were generating very large water bills. Our staff of gardeners/handymen did not always seem busy. The solution seemed obvious: we needed MaintiMizer.”

Rolfes contacted Timothy Good, Ashcom’s president, to see if Ashcom would be willing to donate a MaintiMizer BlackBox, the plug and play version of Ashcom’s popular MaintiMizer computerized maintenance management system. As Good recalls, “When Mark asked me if we could help, I immediately said yes. BlackBox was designed for exactly the kind of situation Mark described: a small organization without a dedicated IT team that still needed all the functionality and reporting capability of the traditional MaintiMizer Web-based system.”

Once the MaintiMizer BlackBox is in place, Rolfes knows exactly how he’ll use it: “The first step will be to define all of our buildings, equipment, and parts. The parts are especially important here, as you can’t just go to a nearby store and pick up what you need. Some are available an hour away, but most have to be special-ordered. We’ll have to define what parts we have and what parts it will be critical (and within our budget) to keep spares for.” Rolfes continues, “Next, I’ll work with our handyman to define a preventive maintenance plan for our entire physical plant, and then we will put that information into BlackBox. That will allow us to develop work orders to help keep the staff busy and ensure that all the preventive maintenance tasks are being performed, hopefully leading to fewer things breaking, fewer crises, and lower costs of operation.”

For Rolfes, the benefits of using MaintiMizer BlackBox are clear and fundamental to the mission of Open Arms Home for Children: “The more that MaintiMizer minimizes the time I need to manage our operations, the more time I will have to spend with Amy and the kids.”

About Ashcom Technologies (

Since 1985, Ashcom Technologies, Inc., has been an industry leader in the development and installation of state-of-the-art systems and technology designed to help organizations save money, increase quality, and improve the bottom line. MaintiMizer, Ashcom’s flagship computerized maintenance management system (CMMS), is the choice of more than 3,000 customers in a variety of industries worldwide. For additional information, please contact or call toll-free (800) 366-0793 (outside the U.S., call +1-734-665-1780).

About Open Arms Home for Children (

Founded by Bob and Sallie Solis in 2005, Open Arms Home for Children provides love and security to children orphaned by the AIDS pandemic in South Africa. We aim to serve the whole child: developmentally, physically, and spiritually. We are committed to raising the children in our care to adulthood, and we serve children regardless of background, race, economic status, or religion. Likewise, our donors come from all faiths and backgrounds, united in simple service to children in need. For additional information or to make a donation, please visit

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