Global annual facilities spend, including maintenance costs, amounts to nearly $1 trillion, reports Live Mint. While Facility Managers are well-versed in how to address facility needs within the budget, shrinking budgets and demand for better facilities continue growing. Meanwhile, aging buildings and lack of visibility into facility processes contribute to higher overhead and increase total cost of ownership. Instead of trying to fit more work into smaller budgets without any change in processes, Facilities Managers should turn to actionable data. Actionable data enables facilities optimization through ideal performance, reduced disruptions, and better guest experiences. Before applying data, it is crucial to get a full view of its challenges, benefits, and steps to success.
Challenges of Applying Facility Data
Gaining actionable data is more complicated than connecting a single asset to the internet. What happens after it is connected? Who will manage the data, and where will it be stored? Rather than answering endless questions, consider these critical challenges.
- Lack of access to data.
- Inability to collect data.
- Poor analysis of data.
- Failure to understand how to apply data.
- Lack of data-driven insights.
- Inability to secure talent to manage data.
- Systems are incapable of considering data.
- Investing in sensors requires money and time.
- Shareholders and employees may push back against data improvements.
- Return is harder to justify given the likelihood of initial increases in facility maintenance costs.
Facilities optimization can successfully overcome these challenges, provided its underlying business case is created with them, and the benefits of improvements in mind.
Facilities Optimization Depends on Data-Driven Decision Making
Facilities optimization refers to the process of ensuring maximum building performance, and while it is most commonly applied to physical assets, it is easy to overlook how it impacts workers. Depending on the type of facility, optimization of the facility could lead to improved productivity among office workers, better marketing capabilities through new amenities, improved learning in educational facilities and offering more amenities to CRE tenants. In fact, actionable data for CRE tenants can help them understand customers’ behaviors, energy use habits and ways to improve their own leased spaces, says Buildings.com. The opportunities for redefining facilities optimization extend to all buildings. Actionable data can optimize the facility as a building and the objectives of building occupants, including both consumers and staff.
How to Use Actionable Data to Augment Building Performance and Increase Service
Facility Managers have many responsibilities, and chief among them is the need to do more with less. The idea of cost avoidance is often associated with this principle, and it relies on an organization’s ability to take advantage of new technologies, systems, and services. In fact, those in need of actionable data should follow these steps:
- Retrofit everything.
- Define needs; benchmark performance.
- Connect with consumers/occupants through technology.
- Consider different execution strategies, says FacilitiesNet.
- Leverage analytics to understand the best path to achieve desired outcomes.
- Take advantage of cloud-based technologies.
- Empower your team with remote access.
- Ensure active cybersecurity measures are in place.
- Use cost avoidance savings for continuous improvement; read “investment.”
- Measure the performance of facility assets, including labor resources.
- Deploy machine learning and artificial intelligence to gain deeper insights and automate controls.
- Consider outsourcing of data application.
- Engage with building occupants.
Unlock the Value of Actionable Data in Your Facilities Now
Actionable data is about more than just connecting assets to the internet; it relies on the compendium of information and how it relates to every potential asset and person in your facilities. Actionable data is only possible through powerful data management and advanced technologies, including analytics, machine learning, and intuitive, AI-driven systems. Thus, your organization’s future facilities depend on your ability to implement these technologies and follow the previous steps to success. Most importantly, remember that actionable data will not tell you what to do tonight. The only thing you can do is to decide to move forward with building the business case for new energy and facilities systems and the value of actionable data. Learn more about how to prepare for a data-driven future by visiting ENTOUCH online.