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Improve Hard Facility Management Services Through Software Technology

facility maintenance, facility management

Rarely do tenants understand the complexities going on behind the scenes of their building. Whether in a retail store, hospital, residential apartment, or office, all occupants require a web of hard facility management services, from lighting to plumbing.

With so many physical spaces and so much equipment to manage, it’s time to simplify the experience for managers, custodial professionals, and building service contractors. Maximizing building services can save time, money, and stress for everyone.

Here’s what facility managers should know about hard facility management services and how they can use technology to improve these services, enhancing the quality of life for building occupants.

Hard vs. soft services

Facility management experts offer two categories of service: hard and soft.

Soft services fulfill occupant needs and provide them with a pleasant, healthy, and safe environment. Examples include security services, waste management, and cleaning.

Hard services are related to the structure of the building and impact the safety and well-being of occupants. They include HVAC, electrical and mechanical systems. To provide these building maintenance necessities, contractors might specialize in certain areas, like plumbing, or they might expand across both soft and hard services.

Improving hard facility management services

By improving hard facility services, you can better maintain your facility’s physical spaces while spending less time on menial tasks.

Consider expanding the efficiency of hard facility services with advanced equipment and interactive software. One way of doing so is through Internet of Things (IoT) technology, which weaves together the monitoring and maintenance systems of a building. It helps facility professionals gather data on equipment and potentially catch issues. Teams can analyze the patterns that evolve and recognize areas that need improvement.

Contractors and renovators can use facility management software to consolidate data, schedule check-ins, and monitor responsibilities and equipment. The software can ensure that you stay up to date with legal requirements for safety and health. This technology also helps accelerate planning and reduces time spent on small, inconsequential tasks like filing paperwork. A tenant portal may help automate and expedite work orders, for instance.

Using software to track the state of your building’s equipment offers long-term benefits. Regular upkeep on equipment will extend its lifespan and reduce the need for costly repairs. Improving the flow and efficiency of these tasks will allow inspections and audits to go more smoothly as well.

Below are three examples of equipment and software that can make life easier for building managers. They can make a big difference in how well a building operates and how tenants feel about their surroundings.

1. Energy sensors

Building maintenance professionals have the immense job of monitoring a building’s energy. Sensors and controls can help keep the lights on as necessary and make significant sustainable changes.

These sensors work by charting patterns in consumption, identifying when residents have neglected to turn off lights. The software triggers energy-saving settings in the middle of the day, when rooms are at their brightest. It also notifies energy management of cracked or damaged bulbs.

Installing these energy sensors can result in a 29% savings in consumption for commercial buildings. The savings alone make it worthwhile to consider using these systems to monitor normal power, emergency systems, and switchgears.

2. Air purification

Your building’s HVAC system and the quality of the air it puts out are important components to consider. Air quality can worsen without proper attention to air conditioning and heating equipment, leading to health problems such as respiratory issues and headaches. Fortunately, innovative solutions exist that can help remove airborne germs.

Ultraviolet light can eliminate these pathogens down to their core DNA within seconds. This process is powerful yet invisible and unnoticeable by occupants, using waves that crest at less than 400 nanometers.

Further clear the airways by properly cleaning HVAC vents and tubes and investing in purifying equipment. Doing so will go a long way in protecting tenants’ health.

3. Flooring data

Hard facility management services can reduce the time it takes to install and clean flooring. Before installation, professionals can analyze data to determine the best flooring materials for a specific area. Flooring and carpeting professionals can use the data to determine factors that best match their client’s needs, such as level of foot traffic, cleaning methods, and even price. Again, consider software that can accelerate these processes and maintain materials longer.

Other programs can calculate installation and cleaning times as well as cost estimates, ensuring proper safety from wet floors as well as an economical approach to maintenance.

Lighten your load with software

Preventing disrepair, planning for building system checkups, and maintaining safety are all big responsibilities, but facilities professionals can lighten the load by integrating software into hard facilities management. Whether you are working with a commercial or residential building, everyone benefits from a more efficient workflow and streamlined communication methods. 

Improve your hard facilities services today and reap the incredible benefits of time and money saved. 

 

Emily Newton

Emily Newton is an industrial journalist. As Editor-in-Chief of Revolutionized, she regularly covers stories in construction and facilities management.

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