The smart building revolution is not a fad on the big screen; it is here. New technologies put the power of the internet in the hands of facilities management leaders, and the trend is an integral component of new buildings and renovations around the country. The most astonishing feats derive from five key technologies that improve building operations efficiency.
Energy and water consumption remains a major problem in modernity, driving concern among politicians, activists and entrepreneurs alike.
Poor water and energy consumption habits in business cause more problems than just high bills. Excess waste water results in algal blooms, damaging the environment and its wildlife. New energy and water monitoring technologies, such as those available through ENTOUCH, compare usage against waste, time of consumption and local regional trends. Thus, businesses can effectively reduce resource use without sacrificing comfort or capacity.
IoT-Powered Analytics Generate Forecasts and Real-Time Response
The Internet of Things (IoT) pushes the boundaries of responsiveness in modern business. Built within ENTOUCH.ONE, powerful algorithms analyze datasets to identify key issues affecting a specific facility within a company’s distributed portfolio. Simple dashboard tools give facilities management professionals real-time access to what’s really going on around the clock. This enables enhanced forecasting of energy and resource demands, driving innovation across multiple locations and through integrated systems.
Maintenance Scheduling Reduces Downtime
Things break down, but according to Terence Alcorn of Facilities.Net, designs with building information modeling in mind can have a direct impact on positive return on investment. “Some high-tech building owners require the model be maintained,” says Alcorn.
In other words, technology needs to be updated at frequent, appropriate intervals, keeping all systems connected and functioning at their peak. This is possible through scheduled maintenance, reducing downtime and keeping the facility operational. Moreover, it reduces costs associated with breakdowns, such as paying a service provider to locate an equipment problem. An integrated system recognizes the issue, notifies the appropriate party, and depending on owner preferences, an in-house technician or third-party service provider can be dispatched automatically.
Centralized Facilities Management Controls Reduce Confusion During Employee Training
Keeping facilities management controls in a central location reduces opportunity for human error and eliminates the burden of training employees on using such systems. Since only authorized users have access to ENTOUCH.ONE, the ability to change settings is limited. This reduces waste and maximizes profits in a company. However, this limited entry also presents major benefits for security.
For example, recall the discussion on the Target hack, which resulted from unauthorized entry via the facilities management system. By limiting entry, the system can prevent this risk from spiraling into a cybersecurity breach, and the system can be leveraged to monitor physical security as well, including automated camera activation and recording, alarms and more. But, the savings from building operations efficiency come to fruition when thinking about accounting responsibilities in facilities management.
Automated Accounting Eliminates Errors in Utility Costs
Modern businesses may span vast geographic distances, opening the door to risks and issues with paying the bills on time. Combining IoT-based technology with accounting software begets efficiency in managing the finances of a company too.
As explained by Jessica Bates of FMLink, integrated systems can be tied into a company’s accounting software, preventing double-billing, overpayments and late fees. While these extra expenses might seem trivial, they can amount to thousands of savings over years or months, adding up even faster for businesses with more locations to manage.
Will the next wave of smart building automation technologies include robotic systems to throw away trash, clean the floors or help customers make purchases faster? No one really knows, but if you consider the growing interconnectedness of today’s companies, none of these possibilities lies outside of reality in the quest for building operations efficiency. In fact, self-checkout systems deployed in retail giants already document consumer statistics, helping generate a better view in the energy and resource demands for the company. Clearly, technology will only become more advanced, boosting operations efficiency beyond your imagination.