Categories
Blog

Extend Asset Life with Condition-Based Maintenance

By Danielle Moore
Director, Channel Marketing
SpaceIQ

Clockworks Analytics and iOFFICE + SpaceIQ Announce Integration that will Enable End-to-End Condition-Based Maintenance 

After driving significant value in the Building Analytics and Integrated Workplace Management System (IWMS) spaces, respectively, the companies now provide an integrated approach to identifying and resolving building maintenance issues proactively.

Clockworks Analytics, the world’s most widely utilized cloud-based building analytics company, and Archibus by iOFFICE + SpaceIQ, a widely deployed and highly trusted IWMS, have formally announced the launch of a new integration that will help facilitate a condition-based approach to maintenance by helping building management teams identify and resolve building issues based on real-time HVAC and equipment performance diagnostics.

The Clockworks Analytics Fault Detection and Diagnostics (FDD) platform plugs into existing Building Management Systems (BMS) and metering systems and analyzes thousands of data points every five minutes to prioritize the highest impact building issues related to energy performance, indoor air quality, equipment operation, and avoidable costs. iOFFICE + SpaceIQ’s all-in-one workplace management platform Archibus empowers building professionals to manage and optimize space, operations, and maintenance—including facility management tools such as work orders, preventive maintenance scheduling, asset management, and capital planning.

The new integration will close the loop on the equipment maintenance lifecycle. BMS and equipment diagnostic data from Clockworks will be synced over to Archibus where asset information—performance history, type, and location—can be viewed alongside asset diagnostics. These insights, combined with configurable workflows in Archibus, will help facility teams quickly address the highest-priority FDD issues and automatically generate work orders that are routed to the appropriate in-house technician or outside vendor. With this combination of data, scheduled maintenance can also be completed at the same time, further optimizing the maintenance schedule.

Read the full press release, download our guide, or register for our webinar to learn more.

Categories
Blog Workplace Thought Leadership

Leveraging BIM for Maximum Returns

By Nick Stefanidakis
General Manager, Archibus
SpaceIQ

As the world population continues to grow, the demand for urban and industrial construction projects will also carry on at a massive scale. Building information modeling (BIM) systems are playing a vital role in this development, with both government and private sector groups seeking more efficient, collaborative ways to build roads, skyscrapers, tunnels, and more.

BIM software is so effective that countries like Abu Dhabi and the UAE now require its use for all major construction projects. Other countries are following suit, and the BIM market is estimated to reach a value of $9.81 billion by 2026.

The COVID-19 pandemic has further increased the demand for BIM, which helps construction companies adhere to safety and distancing requirements. (Global use of Autodesk, one of the most popular BIM software options, increased by 350% in the first quarter of 2020.)

Clearly, BIM software is quickly becoming the new standard in the construction industry. But what are the top benefits of using BIM during the construction process? And how can construction companies leverage the technology to the fullest?

A quick guide to BIM

Like blueprints and CAD software that came before, BIM is fast becoming the standard for drafting, designing, and visualizing any construction project. But unlike past methods, BIM is highly intelligent and collaborative.

Changes to the design are updated and stored automatically in a common data environment, so architects and contractors can immediately observe these changes. In addition, small tweaks to any element of the 3D model flow through to the entire building, which helps maintain consistency and accuracy.

Design is just one element of BIM, however. The software also offers features like scheduling, cost estimations, budget analysis, energy consumption, and more.

Ways to leverage BIM data

The advantages of BIM data go well beyond 3D modeling. But leveraging BIM requires a thorough understanding of how the software can help a particular segment. For example, for those looking to use BIM to FM (facility management) purposes, the manager should first define their needs, make a data storage plan, and then classify information.

Here are other ways architects, construction firms, capital project managers, and operations and maintenance professionals can successfully leverage BIM data:

  • GPS and drones. Every 3D design starts with a point cloud, and that point can sometimes take weeks to come up with. However, GPS software and drones can be used to get quick, accurate, and detailed measurements as a launching point for BIM designs.
  • Laser scanning. Laser scanning is the best way to outline existing structures that may clash with a new construction project. This information can be directly imported into BIM software, making it easy for architects to design buildings with minimal rework.
  • Mobile apps. Owners can now use BIM software like Autodesk anywhere they go, thanks to mobile apps that can communicate both internally and externally to immediately reflect design changes.
  • Project management software. Integrating BIM data with project management software helps to further streamline the entire construction process, from the initial sketches to completion.

Maximize BIM with the right tech

BIM offers many clear benefits, allowing companies to build in a more streamlined, cost-effective, sustainable fashion.  Combined with an open project management tool that integrates flawlessly with Autodesk and other BIM software, like Archibus, stakeholders are able to access vital information that keeps them on track with their goals.

Greater Cost Savings & Predictability

Capital projects present many budgeting challenges, with 30% of construction costs coming from rework and 55% of maintenance costs remaining reactive. Fortunately, BIM can help to greatly reduce costs during the building process, by minimizing delays and providing greater visibility. BIM can also help reduce costs across the life of the structure, from maintenance forecasting to energy specifications.

Archibus helps take these benefits to the next level. Weighted performance scorecards highlight over-budget projects and allow owners to review actual costs in comparison to baseline estimates.

Fewer Errors & Improved Schedules

When asked about the benefits of using BIM, 34% of people surveyed answered that “fewer errors” topped their list. Because BIM offers insightful data and better schedule forecasting, builders are less likely to encounter problems in later stages of construction. In addition, the same survey found that 26% of respondents believe BIM offers an ROI of 25% or more—further highlighting the importance of reducing errors.

Archibus creates a central repository of data, offering a “top-down” perspective that makes it easier to manage projects and changes once construction is completed and the building is handed over to the owner/occupier. With insights like project priorities, actions, and costs, all parties involved have quick access to streamlined reporting and project execution.

Greater Insights

BIM software makes it easier for multiple parties to communicate about the construction process in real-time. This allows all stakeholders to gain valuable insights and a greater understanding of the 3D modeling before it is put into action.

One of the premier advantages of using Archibus is the ability to see each subsystem within a building and understand its context. How does that system exist in relation to others, and what’s its role in broader building function? With this information in-hand, facilities managers can make better decisions about how they manager, alter, and maintain different subsystems, and the effects of those decisions on the building.

Increased Efficiency

In another survey of BIM users, respondents reported that the software allows them to spend less time documenting and more time designing. Increased efficiency means architects can dedicate more of their workday to creating sustainable, cost-effective buildings.

BIM risk mitigation takes many forms. Utilizing BIM data in an integrated workplace management system (IWMS) like Archibus can help model maintenance and improvement tasks sequentially, to reduce risks associated with the scope of a project and increase efficiency. Or it can deliver risk analysis for certain aspects of building function. It can even mitigate on-the-job risks by assessing the inherent dangers of specific tasks. In short: BIM makes facilities maintenance and modification safer.

Comprehensive Views

Organizations typically have a large number of projects in progress across the portfolio. Using BIM data, Archibus can help connect these project to a capital budget plan and ranks them so capital spend is aligned with the corporate mission.

By integrating BIM data into Archibus, managers get a comprehensive view of their entire project, which allows for appropriate building management once construction is complete. Using data collected during design and construction phases lets owners and operators easily track and manage assets and space. The payoff is improved asset performance and space utilization because all departments are aligned.

For example, Maintenance isn’t repairing a roof, that capital planning has scheduled to replace, in a building that CRE has slated to sell, and technology is completing a mission critical project in. BIM correlates the activities across the organization.

BIM for better building

BIM data provides a wealth of opportunities for capital projects managers, real estate developers, and more. Coupling BIM software with Archibus allows owners to leverage existing data, improve construction schedules, and get greater cost predictability.

Explore the benefits of utilizing Archibus and  BIM together by scheduling a demo today.

Categories
Blog

Bank Space Planning

By Dave Clifton
Content Strategist
SpaceIQ

Why do people visit the bank? In today’s digital environment, it’s not generally for everyday transactions. With digital deposit and the move toward cashless payments, people go to the bank for more complex financial matters: applying for a loan, debt counseling, financial planning, and more. These activities all require a different level of involvement and emphasis on bank space planning to ensure customers’ needs are met.

Without the right type of space and facilities structured to support various activities, banks risk losing the confidence, trust and comfort of the customers visiting them. Would you rather discuss a $400,000 mortgage in the privacy and comfort of a closed office or in a conference room right next to the employee break room? Bank space planning ensures the former, instead of the latter. It’s something that’s easy to appreciate within the context of the bank environment.

There’s a lot that goes into bank space planning, beyond setting space aside for different activities. Where, how, and when employees and customers have access to that space matters. Banks need to deploy space in an intelligent capacity, and it starts with planning.

What is bank space planning?

Bank space planning is about coordinating space for different business operations within the context of facilities. Whether it’s personal loans, mortgages, investment products, or something else entirely, banks need to devote space to different operations.

Space planning ensures they not only create space that meets these needs, but also that it’s coordinated within facilities. Visitors shouldn’t go to the third floor to visit tellers. Likewise, not just anyone should have access to the mortgage officers on the fifth floor. Organizing space within facilities is second only to delegating it to different applications.

Ultimately, bank space planning culminates in a floor plan that meets the needs of the bank’s operations. No matter why someone visits, they’ll find a space suited to their needs, positioned within facilities in a way that makes sense.

Benefits of space planning for banks

Space planning takes foresight and understanding. Assessment of operations and facilities tells administrators how to best-use space. It’s up to managers to choreograph a floor plan that allocates enough square footage to each line of business. Within the context of the right floor plan, space planning offers numerous benefits:

  • Small business facilities become more accessible
  • Employees have the space they need to execute mission-critical tasks
  • Reduction in the amount of space needed to conduct operations
  • The cost to the company drops as facility efficiency lowers overhead expense
  • Fewer overlaps and interruptions ensure smoother operations
  • Enhanced safety, security, and privacy in well-orchestrated spaces

Everything from facility efficiency to atmosphere and ambiance factors into space planning. Well-planned facilities are easily navigable, secure, helpful, and accommodating. Conversely, uncoordinated or properly proportioned facilities can be confining, constraining, and generally hindering to employees and customers alike.

Facility managers need to take a clear look at available space and demand for space. This mindful distribution of square footage ensures a frictionless environment that’s also more flexible, agile, and accountable.

How does bank space planning software help?

To coordinate banks according to modern-day customer demands, facility managers need to account for numerous variables. The only true way to organize space with all variables in mind is through bank space planning software. Space planning software brings together the variables, criteria, and digital tools facility managers need to execute on a well-formulated floor plan.

For example, it’s easy to model facilities digitally and use drag-and-drop tools when iterating a floor plan. Administrators can see exactly how facilities shake out during the planning process. This, combined with built-in rules and standards, ensures facilities designed with accountability and efficiency equally top-of-mind. Software tracks iterations and changes, and makes designing even the most complex floor plans simpler.

It’s also nearly impossible to consider effective space planning without the data behind where and how allocated space performs. Software brings data and decision-making together within a single platform, which allows administrators to identify needs, address obstacles, and plan effectively, all at the same time.

What do bank customers expect?

As we think about why people visit the bank, the need for space planning becomes immediately evident. There are important meetings about sensitive information happening daily, between financial professionals and customers who need to feel comfortable in the space where they’re interacting. Customers expect a space that accommodates them and bank employees need to feel supported by facilities as they seek to deliver service.

Bank space planning is part of cultivating facilities that support customers. While it’s vital to offer people robust online banking tools in this digital age, equally as important is the ability to welcome them into an office to talk about their investments or discuss an upcoming loan. Curated facilities set the tone and help banks deliver solutions best-suited to an in-person visit.

Keep reading: Bank Space Utilization

Categories
Blog

Bank Space Utilization

By Dave Clifton
Content Strategist
SpaceIQ

Every adult will find themselves in a bank at some point, for one reason or another. Sometimes it’s just to deposit a check or make a withdrawal. Other times, it’s to meet with a mortgage or a loan officer. Many banks also offer numerous ancillary services such as investment planning and debt counseling. All told, not every person’s visit to the bank is the same, and they deserve the space to ensure they’re getting the assistance they need. It all boils down to bank space utilization.

The rise of online banking has only made banking institutions and facilities even more important. The ability to handle most simple financial transactions online means that people are more likely to visit when there’s a more delicate or complex financial matter. The ability to help them in a comfortable, welcoming environment is paramount.

Whether it’s a loan officer meeting or an opportunity to talk about investments, banks can set the tone for customers through proper space utilization. That means using space appropriately, and making sure it’s accessible.

What is bank space utilization?

Bank space utilization involves allocating and using space within facilities for the purposes of serving customers—and doing it efficiently. Do you have private mortgage offices? Conference rooms for family financial planning? Space for patrons to queue as they wait for a teller? Banks need to understand why people visit, then utilize available square footage accordingly to meet those needs.

Space utilization is both a metric and an objective. As a metric, it provides insight into how efficient facilities are. If you have 12 mortgage offices and only 10 mortgage officers, those two rooms might sit idle. You have a utilization rate of ~83%. Looking at the utilization rate across different areas of facilities sheds light on where there’s opportunity to reallocate space—or do a better job of using it better.

As an objective, banks need to strive for maximum utilization of total facilities. If conference room utilization is only at 30%, it might clue the bank in on the ability to host seminars as a new value stream. Again, the ability to look at space and either a) use it better or b) use it different results in a net win for banking institutions looking to capitalize on facilities.

The benefits of space utilization for banks

Banks that use space efficiently will find themselves better-equipped to meet the needs of customers. Instead of scrambling to find a private office to discuss loans or wait unorganized for the next available teller, banks can treat customers to a seamless, accommodating, comfortable experience. The results for the institution itself expound even further:

  • More efficient use of facilities, from both cost and operations standpoints
  • Better understanding of space allocation and utilization
  • Purposeful allocation of space to support the needs of employees
  • Context for broader facilities data such as utilization and occupancy
  • Insights and opportunities to repurpose or reallocate space
  • Smarter spatial layout of facilities, to streamline accessibility

Proper utilization of space within banking facilities ultimately bridges the gap between customer need and the bank’s ability to satisfy that need. Moreover, it does so in a value-add environment. Customers don’t necessarily need to visit the bank these days. When they do, they expect a superior experience. Meeting this expectation comes from proper space utilization, and its ability to enable better service.

How can bank space utilization software help?

Banks are complex environments not only because of their multifaceted operations, but because of the privacy and security that accompany those operations. From keeping customers out of sensitive areas to maintaining workflows in compliance with regulatory standards, there are several additional layers of insight required to utilize banking facilities better. The solution to accounting for these standards is bank space utilization software.

Specialized utilization software can help banks identify opportunities and contextualize space-related decisions within a rules-based environment. Facility managers can explore opportunities in a sandbox space and reassess how the bank uses space without making any physical changes. The system will show the result of these proposed changes and alert managers to any conflicts that might reduce their feasibility.

Banking environments are also dynamic. Utilization rates and demands can change, and software helps facility managers track and respond to trends accordingly. If utilization rates fall in one area and spike in another, or demand for space changes, managers can review the data to sandbox changes quickly. Software is paramount in assessing and acting on data-back insights.

Making the most of banking facilities

While some banks operate out of spacious facilities, space utilization is nevertheless important. Using the space to meet customer needs and expectations sets the tone for the bank’s ability to help them. People want privacy when meeting about their mortgage and they need space for visuals when working with a financial planner. Facilities that accommodate these specifications inspire trust in customers—and help the bank deliver a higher standard of service.

Keep reading: Bank Space Planning

Categories
Blog

Credit Union Stack Planning

By Devon Maresco
Marketing Coordinator
SpaceIQ

Credit unions are often working with smaller facilities and less space than their larger corporate bank counterparts. As a result, it’s important to know exactly how the branch puts every square foot to work. While staying small can be a competitive advantage for credit unions, they need to equip staff with the space to handle the diverse needs of members, whether they’re stopping by to cash a check or sitting down for financial counseling. Understanding and optimizing space allocation is a function of credit union stack planning.

Stack planning allows credit unions to take a top-down view of facilities and understand space allocation in context to member services. Are there enough private offices for the mortgage officers on staff? How much square footage does the lobby occupy? Questions like these give credit union administrators foresight into their ability to serve members in the right way, in the right environment.

As credit unions seek to compete with larger banks and corporate financial institutions, their competitive edge comes with making better use of space. Here’s a look at how stack planning contributes to this mission.

What is credit union stack planning?

A stack plan is a top-down look at the allocation of space across the entire credit union. It shows a breakdown of total space through a number of lenses, such as percentage of total square footage, cost of total square footage, seats/desks per allocation, and more. The purpose? To provide credit union administrators with information about the composition of each branch and its ability to function efficiently.

Stack plans are an integral part of space optimization. In credit unions, where space is often limited and precious, the stack plan can inform opportunities to reallocate space in favor of better efficiency—whether that’s cost efficiency or a higher standard of member service. For example, if the lobby occupies 30% of total branch space, but there’s need for a financial counseling office, the stack plan can show what happens to space allocation metrics if 5% of the lobby transforms into a new office.

Looking at the stack plan and using it to inform credit union floor plan and space allocation is a simple, effective way to offer members more opportunities with less space.

Benefits of stack planning for credit unions

A stack plan isn’t just a metric for understanding space. Stack planning for credit unions is an active way to shape space allocation that’s more in alignment with the needs of the branch. Here’s a look at some of the benefits credit unions become privy to when they engage in mindful space allocation and active stack planning:

  • More efficient use of facilities, from both cost and operations standpoints
  • Better understanding of space allocation and utilization
  • Purposeful allocation of space to support the needs of employees
  • Context for broader facilities data such as utilization and occupancy
  • Insights and opportunities to repurpose or reallocate space
  • Smarter spatial layout of facilities, to streamline accessibility

Stack planning for credit unions becomes a strategic imperative as members come to expect more. Making deposits and withdrawals is only the beginning. Do you have space allocated for personal loan consultations? Mortgage counseling? Financial planning? More importantly, does your stack plan accurately reflect the priorities of the branch in serving its members?

A clear understanding of space allocation and the ability to stack plan effectively is what helps distinguish credit unions from bigger banks. It shows in their ability to offer the same (or higher) standard of service, in facilities that are a fraction of the size.

How does credit union stack planning software help?

Active stack planning takes software. Credit unions that offer a diverse range of member services within small facilities need the capabilities of software to make informed decisions that impact financial services operations.

Without a clear stack plan and the data that contributes to it, credit unions can’t truly understand their space. First and foremost, credit union stack planning software aggregates and organizes data into the stack plan itself. This data, readily available with context, makes it easier to review and adjust the stack plan in a way that promotes informed decision-making. Admins aren’t simply taking space from X and giving it to Y; they’re reallocating with mind for total operations.

There’s also the convenience that’s inherent to software. Administrators can explore space allocation virtually before making any real adjustments, to see how changes impact cost, workflows, or other metrics. It’s also easy to link digital floor plan concepts to stack plans, for accurate representations that further inform space allocation. Software provides the means to improve credit unions, including stack planning insights that drive decision-making in alignment with broader company goals.

Stack plans enable better member services

Community members choose credit unions over big corporate banks because they expect a higher standard of personalized service. To fulfill on this expectation, credit unions need to allocate space according to member needs. From ample lobby space, to private offices to discuss loans, to customer service desks, and beyond, space allocation is an important element in member satisfaction. Stack plans are the best way to visualize and coordinate space accordingly.

With a good stack plan, credit unions don’t need mega branches or huge corporate offices. They can do more with less through smarter space allocation and emphasis on important member services. Stack plans enable a clearer understanding of space, which facilitates better member services.

Keep reading: Credit Union Space Utilization

Categories
Blog

Credit Union Facilities Management

By Dave Clifton
Content Strategist
SpaceIQ

One of the hallmarks of a credit union is the friendly, welcoming feel members get when they walk through the door. A credit union isn’t a large, impersonal corporate bank—it’s a hometown financial institution that sees members as individuals. Each visit needs to evoke a feeling of comfort, welcomeness, friendliness, and warmth. To do that takes a focus on credit union facilities management.

A strong emphasis on facilities management is imperative for maintaining the ambiance of a credit union—and for enabling the services members expect when they visit one. Well-managed facilities are clean, safe, and accessible, and support everything from simple teller transactions to private meetings behind closed doors. It’s about enabling the credit union to run seamlessly with the full support of facilities.

Here’s why credit union facilities management has become more of a priority for smaller, local financial institutions—and the benefits that come with it.

What is credit union facilities management?

Credit union facilities management encompasses a wide range of disciplines. According to the International Facilities Management Association (IFMA), the core areas of focus for facilities management include: employee support, facility technologies, health and safety, training, environment and sustainability, and facility maintenance. Together, they touch every major aspect of operating a workplace.

For credit unions in particular, facilities management is a practice of vital importance. These institutions rely on facilities as an asset, even more so than their big bank counterparts. They often have smaller branches, which makes for a more personable and intimate setting, which means offering a higher standard of service. Without facilities management to bring cohesion to the environment, credit unions run the risk becoming impersonal, thus losing a major competitive advantage among financial institutions.

From ensuring employees and members have the right space, to keeping facilities running efficiently, to managing the costs and ROI associated with each branch. The overarching goal is to ensure facilities serve the needs of the people relying on them.

Benefits of facilities management for credit unions

A strong emphasis on facilities management is enough to turn a workplace from a cost center into a competitive advantage. Facilities management for credit unions helps ensure members have a friendly neighborhood branch available when they need financial services. Well-managed facilities set the tone by enabling a higher standard of service for members and better ROI for credit unions, among other benefits:

  • Safe and secure facilities that promote accessibility, yet safeguard access
  • Streamlined operations through better space efficiency and utilization
  • More affordable facilities and better budgeting for upkeep and maintenance
  • Better transparency when it comes to company operations and activities
  • Easier management, upkeep, and improvement for space across facilities
  • Better adaptability and more flexibility to accommodate business growth

Facilities management is an ongoing practice with ongoing benefits. Credit unions need to continuously respond to the needs of members, as well as pace the service offerings of larger regional and national banks. Facilities need to support this and offer credit unions agility and scalability, while remaining personable and welcoming.

How does credit union facility management software help?

The sheer scope of focus involved in facilities management makes it nearly impossible to do well without software support. Whether it’s managing facility support tickets, assessing space allocation, monitoring building upkeep, or responding to changing demand, software enables both understanding and action when it comes to facilities.

Credit union facility management software enables not only better oversight, but simplicity, as well. It’s easy for administrators to automate routine facility tasks, focus on specific metrics, and gather data to support decision-making in regards to the credit union workplace. Less guesswork; more data and tools to promote better facilities upkeep and enablement. That, and the benefits that come with dashboards, sandboxes, and modeling tools.

Ultimately credit union facility management software puts administrators in better control of facilities, so they can shape the experience members have when they visit a branch. Whether that means keeping the lights on and the HVAC blowing or allocating space and creating the ambiance required to deliver personalized financial services, software is an essential cornerstone in the facility management experience.

Financial facilities need to be personable

Whether they’re walking in to cash a check, make a withdrawal, or sit down with a loan officer, members need to feel welcome and confident when they step through the doors of a credit union. Well-managed facilities help set the tone for a positive experience and ensure members feel good about their visit. More important, it establishes a level of trust that reminds members why they chose a local credit union over a corporate mega bank.

Facility management doesn’t need to be difficult for credit unions—after all, the facilities themselves are typically smaller than other financial institutions. What matters is the level of oversight required to ensure the branch is well-maintained and aligned with member expectations. If members feel good about their visit and leave satisfied, it’s a testament to a credit union’s ability to be better than bigger banks.

Keep reading: Credit Union Space Utilization

Categories
Blog

Credit Union Space Utilization

By Dave Clifton
Content Strategist
SpaceIQ

Credit unions have a reputation for being small, community-focused establishments. They cater to members with friendly service, personalized financial products, and a warm, welcoming atmosphere at each branch. In fact, it’s these small facilities that often work in favor of credit unions—they don’t project the overwhelming vibe that a large corporate bank might. To ensure facilities feel welcoming, while still enabling a high level of service takes forethought to credit union space utilization.

A focus on space utilization allows credit unions to keep facilities small, while enabling a higher standard of service. Branches don’t need countless conference rooms to process loans, meet about financing, or discuss financial products—not if they allocate and use space efficiently. Space utilization is what allows credit unions to stay small, but do more.

As credit unions seek to establish a friendly reputation among members and ensure a positive experience, success comes down to using space effectively. Here’s a look at how efficient use of space translates to a better standard of service at credit unions.

What is credit union space utilization?

Overall, space utilization is both a metric and a practice. As a metric, it’s the measure of how often employees use available space. In a credit union, for example, you might have three offices for mortgage officers. If these three offices are available 10 hours a day, five days per week, that’s 150 total hours of availability. If, collectively, they’re only in-use for 96 total hours per week, that’s a utilization rate of just 63%. It signals inefficient use of space.

This is where utilization as a practice comes in; it involves credit union administrators looking at utilization inefficiency and determining the best way to use total available space. For example, if you have two personal finance consultants on-site sharing one office that’s constantly booked, it may make sense to turn one of those mortgage offices into another space for personal finance consulting.

Good credit union space utilization creates a balance. Efficient use of space allows credit unions to serve members in the ways they need, in the spaces best-suited to a diverse array of financial activities.

The benefits of space utilization for credit unions

The smaller footprint of credit unions places a higher demand on space efficiency. Unlike big banks, there aren’t countless meeting rooms, offices, teller stations, and other miscellaneous spaces. Credit unions rely on space utilization for the benefits it creates within facilities designed to stay small and accessible. Some of the biggest benefits include:

  • More efficient use of facilities, from both cost and operations standpoints
  • Better understanding of space allocation and utilization
  • Purposeful allocation of space to support the needs of employees
  • Context for broader facilities data such as utilization and occupancy
  • Insights and opportunities to repurpose or reallocate space
  • Smarter spatial layout of facilities, to streamline accessibility

Maximizing the efficiency of available space puts credit unions on-course not only for better space efficiency metrics, but also for a more efficient level of member services. More effective use of spaces means financial services on-demand, delivered in the best environment, which in turn maintains a winning reputation for credit unions as personable, welcoming, and helpful.

How can credit union space utilization software help?

Credit unions offer many of the same financial services as larger banks, in facilities that are a fraction of the size. It takes a lot to keep facilities private, secure, accessible, and welcoming—all at the same time. Credit union space utilization software allows administrators to view facilities through these different lenses, to ensure cohesion across all of them.

Space utilization software also provides essential data about when, how, and why facilities see the see the use that they do. Credit unions need this data to make informed decisions about how to orchestrate or repurpose facilities with the best intention of serving members. Dashboards for space occupancy, usage, and capacity are all imperative when calculating utilization—and determining where there are opportunities for improvement.

Finally, there’s simply no substitute for convenience. The mapping, modeling, reporting, and sandboxing capabilities of space utilization software make it an important tool in keeping credit unions agile. Software helps identify and facilitate change quicker than manual modes of surveying space use and demand.

Credit unions need to stay small, but do more

When members walk into a credit union, they want the comfort and convenience that comes with a hometown, community-focused financial institution. They don’t want to feel like they’ve just walked into a corporate mega bank. Credit unions benefit from a small, homey feel—yet, at the same time, need to offer all the financial products and solutions big banks do. The answer to achieving both is an emphasis on credit union space utilization.

Utilization allows credit unions to provide a higher level of service using less space. It allows these institutions to maintain a down-to-earth atmosphere, while at the same time competing with big banks. Credit unions that toe the line stand poised to become community staples: growing while always delivering friendly neighborhood service.

Keep reading: Credit Union Space Planning

Categories
Blog

SMB Facilities Management

By Devon Maresco
Marketing Coordinator
SpaceIQ

While small businesses don’t have the budgets or the resources that Fortune 500 companies do, they do have competitive advantages. Agility is one—particularly when it comes to physical workplaces. Small companies need to make the most of limited space and don’t have the luxury of allocating to X, Y, and Z. Instead, SMB facility management revolves around maximizing space through multi-purposed governance, emphasis on space utilization, and ROI-minded decision-making.

SMB facilities management is as much proactive problem-solving as it is adapting. To keep the company agile and its workplace efficient, facilities managers at smaller companies need facilities that transform based on demand. This is only possible through intelligent space planning, workflow orchestration, keen workplace governance, and technology-driven operations.

Here’s a look at how smart SMBs approach facilities management and what it takes to keep facilities aligned with a company that’s growing—often quickly and on a tight budget.

What is small and midsize business (SMB) facilities management?

The goal of facilities management is to keep the workplace functional and efficient through smart governance. Do you have the right desking concept to enable productivity? Is there proper space allocation across different business units? Are the desks, chairs, and other workplace amenities comfortable and accommodating? Facilities management touches anything that enables employees to do their best work.

For SMBs, facilities management comes down to adapting the workplace to the changing needs of the business. As it grows larger and becomes more complex, the business’ operations will change—and so will the way it utilizes space. Facility managers recognize the need for change and help growing companies adapt by ensuring the workplace supports new operational demands.

Through strategic facilities management, SMBs are able to provide a safe, functional, comfortable, accommodating workplace that enables growth by enabling productivity. It turns the workplace into a true asset, to justify the cost of overhead by increasing ROI.

Benefits of facilities management for SMBs

When approached with foresight and tact, facilities management unlocks a bevy of potential for small and growing businesses. Being proactive about facilities not only mitigates bottom-line costs, it can also raise the bar for top-line growth by enabling better productivity. Some of the most important benefits of facilities management include:

  • Safe and secure facilities that promote accessibility, yet safeguard access
  • Streamlined operations through better space efficiency and utilization
  • More affordable facilities and better budgeting for upkeep and maintenance
  • Better transparency when it comes to company operations and activities
  • Easier management, upkeep, and improvement for space across facilities
  • Better adaptability and more flexibility to accommodate business growth

To understand the complete scope of facilities benefits, companies need only to look at the focus areas of facilities management: technology, health and safety, culture, environment, maintenance, and operations support. Emphasis on strong facilities management practices equates to benefits in these areas—which ultimately serve to drive the company forward.

How does SMB facility management software help?

Facilities management has become an increasingly involved process as digital technologies connect physical workplace attributes to digital insights. The bridge between physical and digital comes in the form of SMB facility management software. Companies need a way to aggregate workplace data, cost information, maintenance and support tickets, and various other aspects of facility oversight. Software offers this centralized platform and gives administrators a window into understanding the workplace and its needs.

The chief benefit of management software is as a control dashboard. From floor plans and asset management to utilization insights and cost center monitoring, software brings facility insights together and makes them actionable. This helps not only facilitate responsiveness from facilities, it also ensures that the actions administrators take support the mission of the business in the right way.

Software also offers the added benefit of scaling with the company. As SMBs shift, evolve, and grow, their needs change just as fast. Facility management software follows this agility and allows workplace managers to act in tandem. Instead of waiting for the needs of the business to force changes in facilities, administrators can meet those needs proactively and with confidence. The result is a smoother, more stable path to growth and less time spent catching up.

Facilities management is the key to SMB growth

Used right, the workplace is a competitive advantage for any company. For small businesses especially, facilities are a foundation for growth and success, and support critical operations at-scale. To do this, they need to be as agile as the company, which takes keen emphasis on facilities management. The ability to plan for growing operations and take a cost-conscious approach to maximizing facilities is what gives SMBs an edge over larger companies.

Thankfully, facility management is becoming simpler for SMBs thanks to accessible software and a growing recognition of its importance. Any company poised for growth and reliant on facilities needs to look at their operations through the lens of facilities management and ask a simple question: how can well-managed facilities support a fast-growing company?

Keep reading: SMB Space Utilization