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Facility teams can perform better with an ‘app’ rather than an enterprise solution

  • Arc Facilities
  • July 31, 2019

As per a recent survey among 179 facility management professionals shows the following data…

  • Almost 86% of facility owners and building operators are not prepared for emergencies
  • First responders often face difficulty acting fast due to inadequate access to basic building information like plans, photos or live video footage.

And that’s not all…

Everyday facility managers usually spend an hour searching for relevant for relevant building information. The average facility technician team misses at least 6 preventive maintenance tasks on an average, which usually results in 60 hours of overtime in a month.

These are the challenges that can have serious implications on the productivity of facility teams.

The lack of an orderly facility management system results in missing out nearly a third of the work orders, which upsets tenants. In case of emergencies it can get very difficult to contain the amount of damage. Disruption in the continuity of the business affects the reputation of the building owner and increases the pressure on facility management teams, to do more with less.

Building information management is a matter of life and death!

Imagine an emergency like a fire or an explosion, in such cases the safety of the people emerges to be of paramount importance. A fire in a building can double up and get out of hand within 30 seconds. With the recent situation of growing number of active shooters and violence at the workplace it’s imperative to keep contingencies ready for first responders. Usually they’re the ones left scrambling for information in emergency situations. A complex facility management system can hurt more than help in such instances; resulting in loss of revenue, lost productivity, increase in costs, and the inability to offer quality maintenance services.

But how do we prevent this?

Facility management documents usually have a mountain of accumulated files, and it can be difficult to bring order to this chaos. There are usually tons of paper lying in basements or terabytes of data stored in servers. It could be 1000s, 100,000s of documents, like…

  • Complex and large drawing
  • Change orders
  • Work orders
  • Maintenance reports and inspection reports
  • Operating manuals
  • Emergency plans
  • And much more…

The problem lies in being able to access all this information instantly. Especially when needed the most, especially when the information is stored in inaccessible hardcopies or outdated file formats. But with technologies of today, it doesn’t need to be like this…

We use Google – searches over 30 million web pages in fraction of a second and displays 10 most relevant results.

We use Uber – offers a ride share within a few minutes from their database of more than 2 million drivers, no matter where you are…

We use Amazon – discovers multiple suppliers within seconds for any one of the 500 million products within a few seconds.

That’s a lot of information at your fingertips! If these apps can do it, so can we!

Building information management systems currently used in facilities are inadequate

Desktops and laptops aren’t fast when compared to phones and cannot facilitate instant access to building information like mobile devices. But facility management apps enable users to access complex information within a matter of minutes with a few swipes and taps. This can be a huge plus of facility teams for the following 2 reasons:

Access the information on the go – facility management teams are usually away from their desks; you don’t need to hurl your laptop around or drive back to the office to access files on your computer.

In case of a fire in your building, your servers will be down. In such cases if the information was accessible on phone, you can get to information faster.

Communication systems have vastly changed, days of CMMS is over

Imagine a facilities technician staring down at a broken ac. What if they could pull their mobile, scan the QR code or take a photo and send it to the designated department immediately, while also looking up the equipment information to see if it is under warranty? This is now possible with the help of building maintenance apps.

Information consumerization

With rampant consumerization of information, what used to be privileged information that was accessible only to professionals and specialists is now available freely to anyone who is interested and is looking for the same. Also, they’re available in a format that’s instantly accessible on the web (cloud).

App at your hand, instead of an enterprise solution

An app in your hand instead of having an enterprise solution at your desktop is more relevant to facility teams. As the baby boomer generation of facilities staffs look to retire, it is important that less-experienced teams can access necessary building information fast, and without any risk to continuity of business.

The technologies available today, allowing access to every bit of facility information can be simplified and made available within a matter of seconds. What used to be limited to a seasoned professional, will now be available to anyone looking for it. That would address the question which facing the industry today. Why the information needed by facilities professionals to complete their work orders and respond to emergencies fast, accessible on mobile devices they carry all the time?

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