What is a Maintenance Superintendent?

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  • Written By: Mary McMahon
  • Edited By: O. Wallace
  • Last Modified Date: 03 November 2019
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A maintenance superintendent is an individual who is in charge of maintenance, usually maintenance of a physical plant such as a building, facility, public works system, or golf course. Maintenance superintendents are responsible for keeping the facilities they supervise in good working order, and to some extent for predicting needs of people who use the facility to ensure that they are met. These professionals may belong to professional organizations or unions which they use to establish professional connections and to maintain a high standard of job performance.

The maintenance superintendent is highly familiar with all of the systems which fall under her or his responsibility. For example, the maintenance superintendent at a bus yard knows all of the buses in the yard, keeping logs on them for the purpose of ensuring that they are maintained properly. In addition to knowing the facility or machines he or she is responsible for, the maintenance superintendent also manages a staff, delegating maintenance tasks to staff members.

Some maintenance tasks are routine, and may be fairly automated, requiring little attention from the maintenance superintendent. Others are more complicated, or happen intermittently, requiring the maintenance superintendent to make decisions who how they should be done, when they should happen, and who should perform the maintenance. The maintenance superintendent may also have the authority to call in outside professionals to assist with specific maintenance tasks.


In addition to keeping logs, maintenance superintendents also establish protocols which are used to schedule and manage maintenance tasks. These protocols determine everything from the order in which tasks should be performed to what to do during emergency situations, and they may be adjusted to accommodate changing facility needs. Maintenance superintendents are also usually involved with facilities planning, from discussions about planned retrofitting to plans to hold evening events, as these things can directly impact the maintenance crews.

Trusted with the day to day workings of the facilities they work at, maintenance superintendents are often present for the majority of the daylight hours so that they are available to address questions, handle emergencies, and supervise maintenance tasks. In some settings, the superintendent may live on site to be available at all times.

The maintenance superintendent salary varies, depending on experience, years with the organization, job responsibilities, and so forth. Many of these professionals work for government agencies, and are thus entitled to benefits which can improve their compensation even if their hourly wages are not very high. These benefits can include access to retirement plans, health benefits, paid vacations, and so forth.


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