FM Firms: Prepare for the Next Wave of Disruption

The Facilities Management (FM) industry is about to be disrupted by the Internet of Things, with cloud-based technology creating a two-speed economy that presents FM service providers with either a commercial advantage – or a competitive threat. Our CEO, Dan Shields discusses how FM firms can prepare for and make the most of this productive change.

IoT technology is often sold on the basis of energy savings. “But that is a drop in the ocean compared to maintenance bills,” according to Dan.

Far greater financial and carbon benefits can be achieved by digitalising maintenance, both for site operators – and the facilities management firms contracted to deliver asset uptime and operational efficiency. Both planned preventative maintenance (PPM) and reactive maintenance can be more efficiently prioritised and delivered via connected devices and a cloud platform.

Digital (t)wins

Retrofitting sensors to key equipment and connecting them to a cloud-based platform can enable the creation of a ‘digital twin’ – a real-time reflection of a company’s assets that accurately shows their energy consumption and operational patterns.

Digitalising assets can also reduce and remove errors and alarms that can lead to additional site visits by maintenance or FM teams: False analogue alarms can often cause more site visits than they save, with every needless visit racking up unnecessary cost and carbon emissions.


Incentivise first-time fixes

Cloud-based platforms and digital toolkits provide an audit trail to better incentivise FM providers to fix first time and reduce site visits. “Cloud-based systems present FM companies with an opportunity to modernise, and demonstrate to their clients that they are moving away from legacy models, models which almost incentivised site visits over first time fixes,” comments Dan.

Meanwhile, FM company margins have come under significant pressure in recent years, with many of the larger players actively seeking ways to return to sustainable growth. Digitalising maintenance is a win-win solution for both FM companies and their clients who can experience up to 30% savings on reactive call outs. Firms that successfully adopt IoT platforms will be those that thrive.

More efficient assets result in lower energy costs and reduced carbon emissions. Fewer maintenance callouts reduces transport emissions and improves air quality, these are increasingly important cross-vector gains. Companies that deliver demonstrable improvements within their own operations and across their supply chains are baking in significant commercial advantage.

Cut callouts, carbon, air pollution

By reducing the number of callouts FM companies can reduce carbon emissions – and that of their clients.

Unnecessary site visits can add a significant carbon cost to businesses - both FM companies and their clients, with bluechips increasingly measuring not just their own carbon footprints, but that of supply chain partners.

Emissions from transport continue to rise, risking efforts to decarbonise the economy and mitigate climate change. Unnecessary maintenance journeys also contribute directly to air pollution. Companies that adopt and correctly implement industrial IoT are therefore taking demonstrable steps to improve environmental, social and corporate governance, while directly improving both their bottom line and their prospects of winning new business.


CODA: Slash costs by 30 per cent

Shields Energy’s CODA IoT platform delivers the reports, visibility and control that businesses require for remote and real-time management of building operations and performance metrics.

The granularity of the data CODA collects, reports and controls against provides the visibility and insight into previously ‘dark’ asset operation. It can diagnose maintenance issues and fault alerts, which if go unnoticed, can cause expensive downtime, safety issues and excessive consumption costs for customers.

CODA analyses consumption and control logic, and provides an array of metrics to provide real-time building health diagnostics and asset condition monitoring.

This enables efficiency evaluation reports, benchmarking and graphical representations of buildings with live data and click-through data. Via CODA, Shields’ aim is to create up to 30 per cent operational and energy efficiency savings for businesses large and small.

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If you are looking to save energy, reduce reactive maintenance and better manage your entire estate please contact us.

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