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CMMS vs. EAM: The Benefits of Using Both

By Devon Maresco
Marketing Coordinator
SpaceIQ

The realm of software for building and facilities management is growing to include more specialized, targeted platforms. While you can still find most major facility management tools inside an IWMS and most space planning tools in a CAFM platform, you’ll need to look beyond when it comes to asset management and building maintenance. It comes down to a question of CMMS vs. EAM, and how to best-leverage them both into better operations.

While they may just seem like two more acronyms, a Computerized Maintenance Management System (CMMS) and an Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) system are two very different pieces of software. They offer completely different suites of tools and resources to facility professionals. That said, they’re often used in tandem, to produce results that keep facilities and everything in them running smoothly.

Here’s a look at the differences between CMMS and EAM, how they function independently, and what the benefits are to using both of them together.

What is a computerized maintenance management system?

A CMMS system is a platform for managing work requests, service tickets, upkeep responsibilities, repair projects, and more. It’s an organizational system for asset management that’s feature-rich to ensure quickness, cost efficiency, and better outcomes from asset maintenance.

On the surface, a CMMS acts as a queue. Support tickets or manual tasks appear with relevant information for in-house maintenance teams to field. The system allows managers to assign these tasks to appropriate craftspeople or vendors, and track the status of the job through completion. Afterwards, it’s archived and sorted as part of a comprehensive record-keeping system.

The entire CMMS system—from ticket submission to archival—creates a documented record of maintenance and upkeep, which informs a better approach to everything from budgeting to asset decision-making. Facility maintenance professionals have access to job-specific and historical data which informs them on better, more cost-efficient asset upkeep in the future.

What is an enterprise asset management system?

An EAM gives facility professionals a complete overview of assets under management. This can include the building and its capital systems, as well as individual assets that are part of everyday operations. There are also varying levels of EAM sophistication, ranging from full digital twins to simple records of each asset as a cost center.

The primary function of EAM software is to better-inform asset managers of the status of assets. This can include the service record and service information, annual cost of ownership, age and condition of the asset, and much more. The purpose is to provide an at-a-glance understanding, with the option to drill down into specific information that might be useful for decision-making. Do you buy a new company car or maintain the one you already have? When was the elevator last serviced? What is the total cost of upkeep for the break room appliances?

EAM systems are increasingly robust, and can go beyond informing managers about the pertinent facts of an asset. For example, machine learning can glean upkeep data from EAM software to help create a preventive maintenance schedule for a particular asset. Or, IoT integration can make real-time asset tracking possible. The result is a new level of asset oversight, resulting in better ROI.

What’s the difference between CMMS and EAM?

The primary difference between CMMS and EAM is their function. While both pertain to facility assets, they deal with different perspectives of asset management. EAM focuses more on understanding assets and learning about them in the context of their use, cost, and needs. CMMS focuses more on the action of upkeep, to ensure they’re well-maintained and properly serviced. Both are imperative for maximum ROI; they’re adjacent in asset management.

For example, an EAM with machine learning may recognize the need for HVAC service every 68 days (average). The EAM will establish the service record of the building’s HVAC stack and organize the information associated with prior maintenance and costs, as well as any other information needed to facilitate better upkeep. The actual task of upkeep will occur through the CMMS, in the form of a recurring support ticket every 68 days (or sooner), to ensure there’s a system of record.

If it wasn’t already apparent, there’s significant integration opportunity for CMMS and EAM. Both can use the data of the other system, and leverage it into better asset management and ROI.

The benefits of CMMS and EAM together

CMMS and EAM software naturally complement each other. When you consider buildings and their systems as assets, and the need for upkeep across all assets managed within that building, these platforms go hand-in-hand to facilitate a continuum of care and maintenance. EAM tracks the condition of the HVAC system, or the elevator, or the A/V projector—CMMS ensures these assets get the regular and routine upkeep and repair they need to stay functional.

The result of using CMMS and EAM together is a workplace that stays functional ta the highest levels. Less downtime, fewer unexpected problems, and better longevity are all direct results of understanding and attending to assets. CMMS and EAM link understanding to action when it comes to building and asset upkeep.

Keep reading: How the Top CMMS Software Providers Stand Out

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Blog Workplace Thought Leadership

How to Use the American Rescue Plan to Update Your Workplace Management System

By Danielle Moore
Director, Channel Marketing
SpaceIQ

Businesses were hit hard during the pandemic. But with the trials, many businesses have discovered room for improvement and growth. Government agencies, healthcare facilities, and public schools are now in a positive position to rise above and come out stronger thanks to the American Rescue Plan.

What is the American Rescue Plan?

Millions of Americans recently benefited from stimulus checks, tax breaks, and extended unemployment benefits. This economic relief — totaling more than $242 billion — came as a result of the American Rescue Plan signed by President Joe Biden on March 11, 2021. In addition to aiding citizens on individual levels, this plan has stepped in to support businesses and organizations — and leave them stronger than ever before.

Government Agencies

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, agencies had to adapt to stay afloat. Government duties were halted as buildings turned into emergency medical facilities. Revenue was lost and employees were laid off. To remedy these issues, the American Rescue Plan set aside $350 billion in emergency funds to help state, local, territorial, and Tribal governments.

We quickly learned how essential technology is to the health and success of businesses during the pandemic. And now, moving forward, technology continues to support and protect organizations. Because of this, the General Services Administration (GSA) now manages two funds geared to strengthen agencies’ digital operations. The $1 billionTechnology Modernization Fund aims to fortifythe federal government’s cybersecurity while developing cutting-edge tools made to adapt to change. Additionally, $150 million from the Federal Citizen Services Fund will bring positive change to the federal technology workforce and bolster systems for better citizen experiences.

Healthcare Facilities

Healthcare workers were stretched to the limit as healthcare facilities became inundated with patients. However, vital lessons were learned, and, as a result,  the healthcare industry has improved. Ushering in further improvement, the U.S. Department  of Health and Human Services (HHS) is offering $7.5 billion to healthcare facilities for information technology assistance, enhancements to information systems and reporting, data sharing, and support of vaccine distribution.

Public Schools

Of the 1.4 million public sector jobs lost during the pandemic, 1 million of those jobs belonged to teachers. Schools underwent rapid changes to respond to the emergence of COVID-19, including the introduction of remote learning for many. Determined to help schools recuperate from the adjustments, the American Rescue Plan issued $122 billion for the U.S. Department of Education to serve K-12 schools and higher education institutions. These funds are intended to help prevent layoffs, provide internet access and devices to students without connectivity, and allow a safe return to in-person learning with resources for social distancing.

Improving technology to repair and thrive

Undoubtedly, the American Rescue Plan has — and will continue to — lift and support businesses that underwent adversity as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. But this plan does more than simply help businesses recover; it helps them thrive. The key to this persistent success is technology.

Equipped with technology that improves standard processes, workplace management, and overall organization, organizations become smooth-running machines. This efficiency is what saves resources and protects companies from future disasters. The American Rescue Plan has created a unique opportunity for public sector organizations to update or invest in vital technology, such as an integrated workplace management system (IWMS).

Navigating workplace changes with IWMS software

A company’s facilities and infrastructure comprise 25 to 50 percent of its fixed assets and operating costs. Help your business succeed in a globally competitive market by properly managing these precious resources. This is where SpaceIQ can help. Our Archibus platform has helped companies return to work with innovative features that offer solutions to the many negative impacts of COVID-19.

As people return to work and school, there are many variables in question, such as how to follow social distancing protocols, schedule offices, and classrooms, and track the phases of students and employees coming back to work. The Archibus system has clarified these questions and allowed organizations to function at their full potential.

Take a look at some of the ways that Archibus can simplify your workplace management:

  1. Space Inventory. Assign employees to safe seats that meet social distancing guidelines.
  2. Occupancy. Track and manage which employees are working remotely, in cohorts, or coming back to work in phases.
  3. Hoteling. Let employees select a desk from a pool of pre-approved, socially distanced spaces.
  4. Corrective Work. Automatically schedule room and desk cleanings between reservations to promote a safer work environment for employees.
  5. Reservations. Allow pre-approved room reservations that incorporates time before and after a meeting for proper cleaning.
  6. Workplace. Help employees find resources, book meetings and workspaces, access services, and request moves through a convenient desktop or mobile experience.
  7. Space Planning. Forecast and plan for large space and occupancy changes at all levels, including portfolio, city, site/campus, and building and room levels.
  8. Moves. Streamline your move/add/change processes to support employee safety with minimal organizational disruption.
  9. Preventive Maintenance. Schedule daily or periodic “deep clean” work orders for specific locations.
  10. Health & Safety. Reduce workplace safety incidents and better manage personal protective equipment (PPE), training, medical monitoring, and work restrictions.
  11. Asset Management. Provide an integrated view of where to find key assets such as personal protective equipment (PPE), cleaning supplies, and other equipment.
  12. Emergency Preparedness. Implement life-saving and general safety procedures by planning for potential future outbreaks and other disasters.
  13. Waste. Track and manage COVID-19 hazardous waste from point of generation to final disposition to mitigate errors, omissions, and accidents.
  14. Hazard Abatement. Protect employee health and minimize organizational liability by quickly and accurately locating, tracking, and abating hazardous materials.
  15. Compliance. Reduce the chance of virus spread and potential shutdowns that result from inadequate compliance practices.
  16. Condition Assessment. Evaluate the condition of critical assets and buildings, initiating remediation work where needed.
  17. Projects. Provide a central location for employees to manage COVID-related project details, including schedule tracking and budgeting.

Easily access the tools and technology you need

Whether you serve a government agency, healthcare facility, or public school, there are several options available to fund the technology you need to bring efficiency and clarity to today’s changing workplace. The American Rescue Plan has brought relief and security for the future to many organizations who request funding.

If this plan doesn’t cover what your public agency is looking for, there are still several federal and state contract vehicles that can help. Simplify the procurement process by purchasing Archibus through our valued partners found at the following links:

Federal

CIO-CS, HHSN316201500012W

GSA Multiple Award Schedules GS-35F-267DA

Information Technology Enterprise Solutions – Software2 (ITES-SW2), W52P1J-20-D-0047

SEWP V, Group A: NNG15SC07B; Group D: NNG15SC98B

Department of Defense ITAM ESI

State

GSA Multiple Award Schedules GS-35F-267DA

Commonwealth of Kentucky Multi-Vendor Master Agreement, MA758 070000217538

State of California Multiple Award Schedule (CMAS), 3-16- 70-1047B

State of Maryland Multi-Vendor COTS IDIQ, 06B02490021

State of New Mexico Multi-Vendor IDIQ, 60-000-16-00075

State of Ohio Multi-Vendor IDIQ, 534042

State of Texas DIR Multi-Vendor Software IDIQ, DIR-TSO-3400

State of Texas DIR Multi-Vendor Software II IDIQ, DIR-TSO-4236

State of Texas DIR, DIR-TSO-4384

TIPS, 180503

TIPS, 200105

TIPS, 200102

The world may still be recuperating from the effects of COVID-19, but your resilient organization is capable of returning to work stronger. Try a demo of SpaceIQ products to learn how you can safely reopen your workplace and boost your organization’s productivity.

Keep reading: What is a Smart IWMS and What are its Features?

Categories
Blog

What is Asset Property Management?

By Devon Maresco
Marketing Coordinator
SpaceIQ

There’s plenty of overlap in the world of asset management and property management—after all, property is an asset. That said, asset property management is a confusing concept that overlaps with real estate and portfolio management. To make matters more confusing, there’s also the concept of “property asset management” to consider. It begs the question: what is asset property management?

Facility managers need to get familiar with the concept as part of a broader understanding of how to oversee facilities. Here’s a look at where asset property management falls into context alongside other forms of asset management and property management.

What is asset property management?

Asset property management is part of the spectrum of asset management. It trends toward the macro end of the scale:

  • Asset management involves oversight of assets
  • Property management involves oversight of property
  • Property asset management involves oversight of properties as assets
  • Asset property management involves oversight of assets within properties

The difference between “property asset management” and “asset property management” is largely semantic. Most companies practice both in conjunction with each other, which further adds to the ubiquitous nature of the definition. Moreover, most facility managers and portfolio managers see property and property assets as one in the same. For example, it’s difficult to separate the HVAC system from the building it’s tied to. For all intents and purposes, they’re managed together.

Asset management in the real estate market

There is one important distinction to make when looking at assets within properties and the property itself: one of value. The overall value of real estate comes from many individual factors. In commercial real estate, capital systems play a significant role in the value of the building.

For example, a building that is in great shape but has poor HVAC may cost more in upkeep, raising the total cost of ownership. Conversely, an older building with great HVAC may be worth less, but operates more efficiently. When it comes to evaluating these buildings, portfolio managers need to consider how the assets that govern each property play into the total value of the holding.

Put another way, asset property management plays a big role in portfolio management. If the sum total of capital systems in Building A costs more than the sum total of an identical Building B, it’s a sign of the need for better asset management. The decision to act (or not to act) contributes to the value of that building within the company’s broader real estate portfolio.

Tips for better asset property management

The golden rule for asset property management is to be proactive, as opposed to reactive. While it may seem counterintuitive to spend money up front on maintenance, this ideology manifests in saving asset managers the cost of unanticipated, unexpected repairs.

Similarly, tracking the asset over time is an important part in managing it. Through inclusive asset tracking it’s possible to identify upcoming maintenance, budget for costs, understand cost of ownership, and more. All this factors into keeping capital assets in functional condition.

Finally, it’s important to understand assets in context. Consider a building with an antiquated HVAC system. While it might run smoothly, there’s no guarantee it’s running efficiently, which could cost building operators more than they realize. Moreover, it might contribute to a stuffy atmosphere within the workplace—or worse, Sick Building Syndrome (SBS). Looking at cost and upkeep alone aren’t enough. Asset property management needs to include context.

The goals of property asset management

The goals of asset property management are cost reduction and ROI optimization. Managers need to first justify the cost of an asset, then work to optimize its returns beyond the break-even point. For capital assets within real property, this means looking far ahead at the entire lifespan of an investment.

Take, for example, renovations that upgrade the efficiency of facilities. There’s an immediate cost to undertake these renovations, however, they’ll return value through both the efficiency upgrades and the productivity they enable. The goal of an asset property management approach is to reach that break-even point as quickly as possible, and to enhance the ROI beyond that. This means staying on top of upkeep costs in order to minimize them and understanding how to measure and record ROI.

Ultimately, the role of good asset property management is to extend the life and value of an asset, in order to ensure the ROI reaches the highest levels possible.

Software improves property asset management

As is the case for many modern-day facility metrics, asset property management is best tracked using software. IWMS or CMMS software provide critical insights about the cost of operating facilities—particularly their capital systems. These asset insights lay the groundwork for how much it costs to operate a property and set the benchmark for its performance against other real estate holdings. Moreover, they provide insight into how to better-manage individual property assets.

There’s significant opportunity in treating capital systems and properties like the assets they are within the context of facilities management. The more attention given to the cost, upkeep, ROI, and utilization of assets, the more opportunities are available to better govern them.

Keep reading: Property Asset Management Strategy Plus Goals and Benefits

Categories
Blog

Property Asset Management Strategy

By Dave Clifton
Content Strategist
SpaceIQ

Strategy is everything in executing a successful plan. This is especially true when considering asset management. Aside from buying, selling, and maintaining assets, it takes a compelling strategy to use them effectively, and to generate expected ROI from them. To understand and foresee the purpose and benefit of assets—especially capital investments—means developing a property asset management strategy.

Property asset management is a difficult endeavor because it often involves an entire committee of decision-makers. Facility managers provide context for the asset. Finance managers bring together the cost details. Maintenance managers deliver life cycle management data. The number of people at the table can grow depending on the asset and investment. Regardless, stakeholders need to come together to create a strategy that ensures maximum ROI on smart investments that offer clear and present benefit.

What is an asset management strategy?

An asset management strategy is the plan for an asset, which encompasses all major phases of ownership: purchase, upkeep, and disposal. It focuses on all major aspects of investment management, including:

  • Budgeting and costing for acquiring and maintaining the asset
  • Ownership and management of the asset within the company
  • Use and utilization, and expected lifespan of the asset
  • Accessibility and integration of the asset into operations
  • Maintenance, upkeep, and repair of the asset

The goal of an asset management strategy is to set goals that optimize the ROI of an investment. In doing so, it’s possible for a company to track the asset’s costs, performance, and other important variables, to ensure it meets expectations. It also delegates responsibility for the asset.

What is property asset management?

The term “asset” can encompass many different things. In the context of “property asset,” it typically refers to a building or property. For example, if a company purchases a small 5,000sq/ft satellite office building, it’s considered a property asset. This is the broadest definition of a property asset, but not the only one. Many companies will also call capital systems “property assets,” such as HVAC, plumbing, and electrical investments.

Considering both definitions, “property asset management” typically refers to asset management for property and essential systems required to keep that property functioning. This, as opposed to more traditional assets, which might include things like equipment items, vehicles, and other non-integrated investments.

What are the benefits of asset management?

The benefits of good property asset management are clear. From a facility standpoint, there’s tremendous ROI available for both employees and companies alike. Employees benefit from facilities that are well-maintained and keep in safe, comfortable, accessible condition. As a result, employees will use the facilities available to them, which justifies their expenditure for companies.

There’s also cost savings to consider. As is the case with most assets, proactive upkeep and maintenance results in a lower cost of ownership over time. Quarterly service on an HVAC system may cost $250 each time ($1,000 annual), but it’s a far more preferrable cost to an emergent $4,000 repair that also affects productivity. Moreover, upkeep costs are predictable, whereas reactive repairs and maintenance are unexpected.

Finally, there are intangibles to consider. Well-maintained property assets tend to evoke a sense of price among employees. Workplace pride encourages everything from a positive mood while at work, to a better caliber of work done, to feelings of loyalty to the company. All these and more add up to benefits for both employee and company—all the result of smart property asset management.

The goals of property asset management

The bottom line in a property asset maintenance strategy is cost justification and ROI optimization. Property assets first need to pay for themselves to justify their cost of ownership. Then anything beyond that becomes ROI, and it’s in the best interest of stakeholders to stretch that ROI as far as it’ll go.

In different context, this is a matter of bottom-line justification and top-line exploitation. Every asset comes at a cost. An asset management strategy is the initiative to reduce the burden of that cost, while maximizing the potential of its benefits.

Consider a very simplified example. If it costs $30,000 to lease an office space annually and another $10,000 to maintain it, total revenue generation needs to exceed $40,000 by a factor of X to justify the cost of ownership. Good property asset management will seek to optimize the space to both increase its revenue generation capabilities and reduce the upkeep costs associated with it.

Software is imperative in property asset management

It’s one thing to have a property asset management strategy. It’s another to continuously benchmark and observe it. Asset management software is an important part in bridging decision-making with expected outcomes, no matter the time horizon.

From the moment of expenditure to the moment you retire an asset or it falls off of your books, it’s important to track as many functional aspects of that asset as possible. What is the cost of ownership? When is the expected break-even point? What’s the upkeep cost and maintenance schedule? Where is that asset right now and what service is it performing? Software makes it possible for all stakeholders to fully understand an asset within the context of a unified management strategy.

Whether it’s a reinvestment in the facilities themselves or a tangible asset tied to them, every asset deserves a management strategy. Every company deserves software that allows them to coordinate and observe that strategy, from cradle to grave.

Keep reading: What is Real Estate Asset Management?

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Blog

Explore Archibus Back-to-Work Solutions 

By Danielle Moore
Director, Channel Marketing
SpaceIQ

As organizations explore safe and measured returns to work, they need tools and resources to help ensure the ongoing health and safety of employees. Archibus provides tools for hoteling and reservations, preventive and corrective maintenance, occupancy, health compliance, and myriad others. Our goal is to deliver a complete suite of solutions that help organizations put their best foot forward as they take steps to get back to work.

Here’s a look at the many tools Archibus offers and how to capitalize on them. Keep checking back after each version release to discover new solutions to facilitate your return to work.

Hoteling 

Archibus’ robust hoteling features empower your workforce to find and book spaces with ease—from full-time employees, to flex workers, to visitors. Enforce bookings, schedule cleanings, monitor capacity, restrict and enable bookings, prevent duplicate reservations and more—all through a pool of pre-approved, socially distanced spaces. Learn more.

  • Improve space utilization and enable the disposition of excess inventory
  • Realize a more efficient facilities footprint resulting from improved space utilization
  • Accommodate a mobile workforce and increase employee satisfaction
  • Encourage responsible and efficient use of space

Reservations 

Room reservations create new governance opportunities for facility managers, without hampering employees as they return to the workplace. Use Archibus to structure workspace check-ins and mandate health checks before check-in. Allow pre-approved room reservations that incorporate time before and after a meeting for proper cleaning. Learn more.

  • Secure shared space and resources with self-service Web forms
  • Streamline invitations to participants via integration with most email clients
  • Reservations Plugin lets individuals make room reservations within the Outlook™ client
  • Extension for Microsoft Exchange handles all reservations and updates

Space Inventory 

With changing occupancy limits comes the need to redefine your space. Refocus allocation and distribute space in new, more efficient ways with Archibus’ space inventorying and planning tools. Assign employees to safe seats that meet social distancing guidelines and create workplaces that make better use of the space you have, based on demand. Learn more.

  • Deliver flexible, self-service reporting for effective space allocation and cost control
  • Improve evaluation of building performance and enable accurate benchmarking
  • Enhance design/planning capabilities to use space more efficiently
  • Increase productivity with Archibus All-in-One Home Page with quick access to tasks

Space Planning 

Forecast and plan for large space and occupancy changes at all levels, including portfolio, city, and site/campus, as well as building and room levels. Track when, how, and why employees use spaces, then leverage that data into more efficient floor plans—all designed within the parameters of a post-pandemic framework. Learn more.

  • View how space is allocated across divisions, departments, buildings, and campuses
  • Compare spaces to identify vacancies
  • Track available space over time
  • Generate space scenarios directly from existing inventory

Occupancy 

Track and manage which employees work remotely vs. those coming back-to-work in phases. Occupancy metrics help companies maintain distancing standards, manage desk availability, optimize for space utilization, and more. Archibus’ daily and real-time occupancy reporting puts facility managers on the front lines of planning for and enforcing safe space usage. Learn more.

  • Coordinate workspace availability between various workgroups
  • Authorize space allocation by group, department, shift, and more
  • Review daily occupancy data to glean insights about space trends
  • Integrate with reservation and hoteling software to automate occupancy management

Building Operations and Maintenance 

With a return to work comes a shift in operational best practices, especially around building maintenance. Archibus helps you adjust accordingly. Automatically schedule room and desk cleanings between reservations, to promote a safer work environment for employees. Or, schedule daily or periodic “deep clean” work orders for specific locations. Learn more.

  • Observe proactive and corrective maintenance workflows
  • Utilize a full CMMS to support your approach to facility maintenance
  • Create and define return-to-work tasks specific to workspaces
  • Automate maintenance and operations workflows to simplify oversight demands

Moves 

Maintain the mobility of your workplace and streamline the move/add/change processes, to support employee safety with minimal organizational disruption. Archibus’ centralized move management system lets you keep tabs on movement and action, so you can maintain workplace agility without compromising employee safety. Learn more.

  • Streamline the entire move process, including requests, approvals, and updates
  • Improve communication between in-house and external resources
  • Generates trial layouts, move analytics, and intelligent dashboards
  • Enable the timely distribution of updated personnel and cost center information

Workplace 

Create the workplace your employees need with Archibus. Help employees find resources, book meetings and workspaces, access services, and request moves through a convenient desktop or mobile experience. Archibus does it all, so you can shape the workplace around the needs of the people using it—all while staying safe, compliant, and productive. Learn more.

  • Use GIS and BIM data to create a complete digital twin of every workplace
  • Leverage broad integrations to create a workplace that’s smart and connected
  • Combine digital workplace assets with physical facilities, to better-support your team
  • Create an agile, flexible workplace that operates within a post-pandemic framework

Compliance 

Businesses of all sizes need to take steps to protect themselves from liability in a post-pandemic workplace. Lean on Archibus to reduce the chance of virus spread and potential shutdowns that result from inadequate compliance practices. From social distancing tracking to hazard abatement, you’ll have tools to prevent compliance issues before they arise. Learn more.

  • Personalized back-to-work e-mail notifications
  • Monitor and adjust the dynamic workplace
  • Achieve and maintain regulatory and code compliance
  • Track key processes involved in social distancing

Asset Management 

Take advantage of an integrated view of where to find key assets within your facilities, such as personal protective equipment (PPE), cleaning supplies, and other equipment. Archibus makes it easy for employees to find the equipment and resources they need, and for facility and asset managers to track, monitor, and maintain them. Learn more.

  • Centralize asset inventory
  • Track assets, enhance accountability
  • Budget assets with full view costs
  • Enable a full life cycle strategy

Condition Assessment 

Evaluate the condition of critical assets and buildings, initiating remediation work where needed. Archibus keeps your facilities and assets up and running safely, with insights on how to prevent problems before they arise. Provide employees with a seamless return to work experience—one that isn’t hindered by downed assets or facility restrictions. Learn more.

  • Track asset condition, plan for maintenance, and prepare budget scenarios
  • Utilize an objective and systematic framework for prioritizing work
  • Improve information accuracy and consistency
  • Reduce downtime and associated costs

Emergency Preparedness 

From shared work environments to corporate campuses, emergency preparedness is key. As employees return to work, their situation and surroundings may have changed. They need to stay informed about new protocols and standards, so they can act accordingly in an emergency. Archibus helps you implement safety procedures and plan for hazards protectively. Learn more.

  • Proactive emergency operations management
  • Access accurate information about risks
  • Implement contact tracing to quickly resume normal operations
  • Expedite insurance claims and negotiate more favorable coverage terms

Hazard Abatement 

Protect employee health and minimize organizational liability by quickly and accurately locating, tracking, and abating hazards. From contact tracing to narrow exposure pools to workspace disinfection standards and scheduling, Archibus makes proactive management of hazards a top priority, to reduce liabilities across facilities. Learn more.

  • Facilitate a safe working environment for building occupants
  • Minimize regulatory actions and/or occupational illnesses
  • Avert costly operating shutdowns, loss of facility use, penalties, or fines
  • Identify, locate, sample, document, and abate potential exposures

Health & Safety 

Reduce workplace safety incidents and better manage personal protective equipment (PPE), training, medical monitoring, and work restrictions through Archibus. Use a mix of building information data and connected workplace sensors to get a top-down view of facilities and a clearer understanding of where and how to avoid potential health and safety risks. Learn more.

  • Identify, evaluate, and correct health and safety risks in the workplace
  • Reduce medical claims, disability compensation, and loss of productivity
  • Track and follow-up on health and safety incidents to minimize risk and liability
  • Reduce the cost of administering a health and safety program

Waste 

From masks and gloves to materials used to sanitize workspaces, pandemic waste materials need careful treatment and oversight. Use Archibus to track and manage COVID-19 hazardous waste from point of generation to final disposition, to mitigate errors, omissions, and accidents. Learn more.

  • Simplify tracking and management of hazardous waste streams
  • Decrease the risk of fines or litigation surrounding hazardous waste storage and disposal
  • Increase the visibility and improve accountability for waste management
  • Reduce the cost and effort of satisfying waste audit and reporting requirements

Projects 

Provide a central location for employees to manage COVID-related project details, including schedule tracking and budgeting. Archibus’ dashboard keeps employees in the loop about what’s expected of them and how to navigate projects and duties within the framework of new policies, protocols, and procedures. It sets standards and expectations for everyone. Learn more.

  • Create a top-down perspective of program and project priorities, actions, and costs
  • Allow project members to synchronize information at different organizational units
  • Streamline project oversight via milestones, tasks, and status changes
  • Reduce administrative burden by leveraging existing data

Get ready for a seamless return to work 

Archibus helps companies of all sizes get back to work. Utilize the tools above to plan and execute a seamless return to work, and keep checking back as we continue to add tools based on the needs of our customers.

Want to explore Archibus’ back-to-work solutions for yourself? Schedule a demo today.

Keep reading: Back-to-Work Planning & Employee Sentiment

Categories
Blog

Digital Twin for Asset Tracking

By Dave Clifton
Content Strategist
SpaceIQ

Every investment a business makes in equipment or resources comes into inventory as an asset. Whether it’s a workstation computer, a multifunction photocopier, or a vehicle parked outside, it’s vital for businesses to track and maintain these assets for as long as they have them. It’s called life cycle maintenance, and it requires a robust system of accountability. It’s why many businesses have turned to digital twin for asset tracking.

Digital twins serve as a powerful tool in collecting and maintaining data relevant to assets. Integrations with support and maintenance systems, as well as historical upkeep information, paint a digital record of a physical asset. Not only does this aid in life cycle maintenance, it helps businesses better-understand their assets. Here’s a look at how digital twin technology supports better asset tracking.

A digital record of a physical asset

So long as it’s kept current, a digital twin can house the complete service record of an asset. This includes capital systems.

For example, consider the backup generator that powers your on-premise server room. It needs biannual maintenance to ensure functionality in the event of a power failure. Looking back through service records in the digital twin, you can see that it was last serviced five months ago—which means it’s due for service soon. Asset managers can schedule a service appointment with the appropriate vendor—or create an automation within the digital twin that does it for them.

Every successive maintenance item gets added to the log, alongside information about emergent problems, solutions, notes, recommendations, costs, and anything else noteworthy about the continued upkeep and reinvestment in an asset.

Maintenance integrations

Digital twins are highly integrative, and one of the perfect pairings is with a CMMS platform. The asset tracking capabilities of the digital twin, paired with the solutions-driven capabilities of a CMMS, create a continuum of care that emphasizes proper life cycle maintenance.

Consider a fleet vehicle. It needs routine service every 30k miles, as well as an oil change every 5k miles. There are also factory-recommended services and discretionary repairs to consider. Now, consider all these services within a CMMS that’s smart enough to create a ticket when they’re due and assign it to the right staff member or vendor. The digital twin can actively track the mileage of the vehicle and interface with the CMMS. When the vehicle hits 90k miles, the digital twin relays the information to the CMMS, which generates the ticket: “schedule 90k mileage service.”

Integrations beget automation, which is vital in asset tracking and maintenance. Digital twins decrease the level of oversight or effort that goes into managing the multitude of business assets and instead, puts exceptional maintenance on autopilot.

Live asset data and streaming insights

Assets are constantly in-use—it’s what makes them assets. This can make it difficult for managers and stakeholders to keep track of them. This is where IoT sensors come into play as vital tools in asset tracking and management.

IoT sensors provide an abundance of simple, yet vital information about assets—and they relay that information to digital twins. Think about something as simple as a video projector on a cart. Equipped with a sensor, it’s easy for asset managers to look at the digital twin to see where on a corporate campus that asset currently is. This data, over time, delivers a clear picture of that asset in action. Wednesday it was in Building A. Last week it was in Building C. Before that, it sat idle in Building D for two weeks. As the life of an asset becomes more transparent, the management capabilities surrounding it become more robust.

Improved decision-making power

Should you sell the photocopier that’s eight years old and buy a new model? That depends on what the digital twin data says. At a glance, asset managers can see the cost breakdown of the asset—purchase price, upkeep costs, ROI, current value, and more. They can also see its maintenance history and usage history. At a glance, the digital twin provides precise information for a more informed decision. You might find that the cost of a new photocopier will pay for itself in three years, which makes it a smart investment over your current model that’s racking up the maintenance costs.

The concept is simple: the more you know about an asset, the more informed you are when it comes to utilizing it (or replacing it). The IoT and digital twins are a powerful combination for illuminating asset information.

Asset tracking with digital twins

Digital twins empower businesses and stakeholders to see their assets in a new way. Beyond the physical form and function of an asset, digital twins provide insightful data about its place in the greater operational picture. What’s the current value of the 2019 Sprinter Van parked outside? When was the copy machine last serviced by the OEM? Where is the fourth floor A/V cart right now? Digital twins bring visibility to assets in a much broader sense of the word.

Combined with the IoT and automation, businesses have even more opportunities to make assets go further. From proactive and preventive maintenance to better decision-making about how to use them, asset tracking through a twin means more mindful management.

Whether it’s tracking usage or optimizing efficiency, digital twins provide much-needed insight for critical assets big and small.

Keep reading: How to Use Digital Twin Software

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Government IWMS Software: 10 Must-Have Features

By Dave Clifton
Content Strategist
SpaceIQ

There’s been a prolific rise of government IWMS software over the last decade. It’s because, like other types of workplaces, government facilities have undergone major change. These facilities have become more complex and agile, and the expectations for them are more diverse than ever. Government IWMS solutions help marry form and function to meet these expectations.

From facility maintenance and space planning, to access control and wayfinding, the capabilities of IWMS for government agencies dictates their usefulness. While not every facility needs the same level of oversight, it’s nonetheless important for municipal building managers to have robust tools available to them. Here’s a look at 10 of the must-have features of an IWMS for municipal building management.

  1. Space management. Every square foot of space in government facilities is important. Facility managers need a top-down view that allows them to see which spaces are static, which are dynamic, and which offer flex potential, so they can manage the sum of facilities appropriately.
  2. Emergency preparedness. Government facilities are beholden to strict emergency preparedness. IWMS software enables emergency planning for everything from inclement weather, to threats of violence, to facility failures, and beyond. Moreover, it makes these plans accessible to everyone who needs them. It’s easy to update, disseminate, and train against these materials when they live alongside floor plans and other facility data.
  3. Lease management. Government facilities are taxpayer funded, which means maximizing ROI and value. Lease management tools help ensure taxpayer dollars are spent wisely, and that the facilities they’re funding deliver value to the communities they serve. At a higher level, IWMS brings broad perspective to portfolio management across all government buildings within a certain jurisdiction.
  4. Fleet and asset management. Here again, government assets are the result of taxpayer dollars. It’s in the best interest of municipal building managers to keep track of assets and fleets in a way that shows upkeep, cost, ROI, utilization, and other important metrics that justify continued investment or new investments. This is important for everything from budgeting to cost-benefit analyses that may eventually become public information.
  5. Sustainability tools. Sustainability is paramount in government facility management. From energy conservation to recycling programs and waste management, IWMS platforms provide tools to ensure efficiency. They’re also instrumental in providing evidence-based insights into the efficacy of such programs. Combined with BIM and other modeling tools, sustainability metrics are part of next-gen building governance.
  6. Wayfinding tools. There’s an indisputable need for wayfinding in government buildings. An IWMS is central to a myriad of wayfinding integrations—everything from interactive facility maps, to employee directories, to point-by-point directional apps. IWMS lends facility context to wayfinding, to make it more robust and versatile. This is vital for municipal facilities large and small alike.
  7. Move management. Government facilities aren’t as static as they’ve historically been. In fact, the shift to more dynamic spaces has resulted in no small amount of relocation within buildings. Then move management tools within an IWMS help bring fluidity to agility, and unlock the utility of spaces that might otherwise remain closed-off or static. It’s also an important consideration during periods of remodeling or improvement to facilities.
  8. Hoteling and room booking. Private space is essential in a municipal setting. Employees need an opportunity to book space and reserve rooms they can use uninterrupted. Hoteling and room booking are a fundamental part of IWMS usage in government buildings, and the gateway to maintaining privacy and confidentiality when people are on the move.
  9. Access control systems. Most municipal facilities already have some form of access control. IWMS brings that control into a single system that makes managing it simpler. Whether it’s badging and ID passes or more advanced biometrics, IWMS is instrumental in creating accessibility for those who need to and restrictions against unwanted access.
  10. Maintenance management. Government buildings face significant need for maintenance, upkeep, and restoration given their age and rate of use. Orchestrating maintenance tickets and service logs is a fundamental must-have from an IWMS, and an important part of keeping facilities safe, accessible, useful, and clean.

The best government IWMS software will include a majority of these features—if not all of them. And even if you don’t need or use them all, it’s still vital to have them. Municipal buildings are still evolving, and will continue to evolve alongside other traditional workplaces. As they do, more and more of these features will become relevant to facility managers. It’s best to get familiar with them now.

Keep reading: Five Uses for Government Move Management Software

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Facilities Management Software in Australia: Must-Have Features

By Devon Maresco
Marketing Coordinator
SpaceIQ

CRE costs in Australia face turbulence from the fallout of COVID-19. Nevertheless, they remain relatively high, which means tenants and occupants need to stretch their investment over every square inch carefully. The best way to do this is through facilities management software in Australia. That means using software that’s feature-rich, rife with the capabilities Australian businesses need to operate with efficiency.

There’s a strong market for facility management software for Australian companies. That said, not all software is equal, and not every program offers the same level of opportunity when it comes to features. Here’s what to look for when choosing facility management software to govern your business’ facilities and operations.

Floor planning and stack plans

At its core, a successful facilities management program needs space visualization features. The two most-used and most important are floor plan and stack plan features. In the quest to maximize space as an investment, these tools are essential. They enable facility managers to coordinate, plan, and optimize space in any setting, no matter the variables involved.

The best software will not only offer space visualization tools, it will support these tools with value-add features. For example, a stack plan might come with the ability to see cost center data alongside space allocations. Or, a floor plan might feature programmable parameters to ensure new floor plan designs don’t violate building codes. The more features within floor plan and stack plan capabilities, the more useful they are.

Move management tools

Now is a period of flux for many Australian businesses. They’re reconsidering space and using this opportunity to relocate to new facilities that better-support operations. To do this efficiently takes a robust suite of move management tools.

Look for facilities management software that simplifies relocations of all types and complexities. This includes everything from checklists and task delegations, to messaging integrations and asset management features. While moves may not be a routine part of your operations, many of these features lend themselves to agile workplaces. It’s important for companies to evaluate these tools and understand how they apply to any shuffling or relocation opportunities ahead.

Asset management resources

Facility management software in Australia needs to include asset management resources. As they strive to maximize their space, Aussie companies need to also consider the assets within that space. From copy machines and break room appliances to capital systems and high-value equipment, mindful asset management improves both top- and bottom-line prospects.

The biggest opportunity for companies to optimize facilities is through preventive and proactive maintenance. This also necessitates a CMMS component, which many broader facilities management platforms offer or integrate with. Digital twins are also an important factor here, since they’re digital representations of assets, from the building itself to the systems within it. Software that offers these features enables Australian companies to maximize their management of high-value assets and their contribution to the business.

Wayfinding and directories

For companies occupying larger facilities or broad campuses, wayfinding is vital. It’s important that employees and guests are able to navigate to specific areas quickly. But wayfinding and directories offer so many more opportunities beyond navigability. They’re also instrumental in visitor experience, safety, convenience, and collaboration.

Look for software with a strong emphasis on wayfinding and directory capabilities. It’s not enough to have a lookup system that helps people find each other. Wayfinding also needs to bridge into space booking, access control, and everyday operations. Implemented correctly, wayfinding helps employees and visitors alike make the most of the space available to them—a factor that can improve space utilization and ROI.

Room booking and space reservations

More and more Australian businesses have embraced agile workplaces. To govern them accordingly takes hoteling software and room booking systems. You’ll find both in the top facilities management software. This includes features that make it easy to search and book workspaces, whether on-site or off-site. Moreover, these systems are also instrumental in providing statistical data about space efficiency. This enables further optimization and cost-efficiency.

Whether your business has shifted to flex work or wants to promote a more dynamic workplace, room booking and reservation software is essential. It’s quickly making the “must-have” list of demands for Australian companies embracing space flexibility.

Look for features that support your business

The best Australian facilities management software is the one with the features and capabilities to match your operations. Even if you don’t need a specific feature, it’s nice to have it available as your business grows and your needs evolve.

If COVID-19 taught us anything, it’s that workplaces will continue to adapt as the workforce does. The Australian commercial real estate market is proof of this right now. With new expectations from employees and shifts in workplace regulations, facility managers need plentiful tools to adapt facilities in a way that meets these new expectations. Facilities management software is the key to not only weathering change, but continuing to adapt to it.

Keep reading: Selecting the Right Facility Management Software

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Digital Twin Manufacturing Examples

By Devon Maresco
Marketing Coordinator
SpaceIQ

Digital twins have become a staple in workplace governance across many sectors, but they’re rooted firmly in manufacturing. There’s an abundance of digital twin manufacturing examples that paved the way for the rise of digital asset management in other aspects. For example, a company might use a digital twin to monitor the condition of its HVAC system—a practice rooted in factory machine monitoring and maintenance.

As facility managers get familiar with digital twins, it’s important for them to look at the roots of this technology. Not only are there lessons in manufacturing that translate across industries, there are also clues about how to maximize the effectiveness of a digital twin in the face of an ever-expanding IoT.

Here’s a brief look at digital twins in manufacturing and why they broke sector barriers to become relevant far outside the factory environment.

What is digital twin in manufacturing?

A digital twin is a digital mirror of a real-world asset. In manufacturing, it’s a virtual replica of a specific machine, informed by data. This data can come from networked sensors or manual input, and when combined, provides a clear picture of the condition and history of the machine.

More than a representation of equipment, a manufacturing digital twin is vital for the opportunities it offers. According to Digitalist, the manufacturing roots of digital twins set the stage for their exponential potential:

Digital twins represent an enormous opportunity for manufacturers, including engineering, design customization, production, and operations. Digital twins are vital to improving situational awareness and allowing CIOs to test future scenarios that can enhance asset performance and proactively anticipate maintenance faults.

According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s Kaizen philosophy of continuous improvement, in the world of manufacturing, digital twins provide the decision-making insights factories need to run Lean. As they seek to eliminate waste, manufacturers turn to quantitative insights from digital twins. These systems are increasingly essential as part of the Kaizen philosophy.

What is an example of digital twin in manufacturing?

The best example of a digital twin in manufacturing is a piece of equipment that’s outfitted with sensors. For the sake of example, let’s say it’s a machine with an electric motor and a driveshaft, outfitted with a vibration sensor, temperature sensor, and rpm meter. These devices all feed real-time data into a digital twin of the machine. There are several ways this digital twin becomes useful.

  • Real-time observation. A trigger programmed into the digital twin alerts maintenance techs if the vibration level, temperature, or rpms exceed a specific threshold. This incites real-time action to prevent long-term damage.
  • Historical data. The motor suddenly fails. During a root cause analysis, the maintenance tech reviews digital twin data and sees that rpms spiked several times prior to the failure, and the temperature rose dramatically moments before failure.
  • Preventive maintenance. Maintenance techs integrate the digital twin data with a CMMS platform. The CMMS schedules routine service based on average component lifespans and manufacturer-recommended service schedules.

These are just simple, practical examples of digital twins in manufacturing. Modern factories have much broader, more complex integrations that range from better machine maintenance practices to value stream monitoring.

Examples of digital twin in manufacturing

The more sensors and other data inputs there are to feed a digital twin, the more accessible insights become. In the factory environment, they lead to a bevy of lean manufacturing advantages:

  • Reduced waste. More insight into machine operation helps to create initiatives that reduce total machine waste, as well as peripheral waste in the value stream.
  • Improved throughput. The ability to keep a machine up and running at peak efficiency improves the total throughput of a line.
  • Better uptime. Stronger insight into equipment function and potential catalysts for failure allow maintenance teams to subvert them for more reliable uptime.
  • Equipment longevity. Better-maintained equipment lasts longer and performs more reliably, lowering the total cost of ownership.
  • Preventive maintenance. Instead of reactive maintenance, manufacturers can move toward preventive approaches that improve predictability.
  • Better asset ROI. Fewer problems and longer lifespan establish a better ROI for equipment as it continues to contribute to operational excellence.

The true purpose of manufacturing digital twins is to realize Lean philosophies. That means less waste, better equipment availability, proactive action, and better efficiency across the value stream.

Digital twins manage manufacturing’s complex environment

Step into any modern factory and it’s easy to see how digital twins got their start. There are so many intelligent systems running continuously, relaying data about everything from machine condition to throughput. All this data needs to go somewhere. Digital twins arose out of necessity and quickly became the foundation for smart factory operations.

Manufacturing is the original case study for digital twins, and it paved the way for broader application across other sectors. In the same way factories became smarter and generated more data, so too have office buildings. And, with the prospect of smart cities rising each year, it’s a safe bet that digital twins will continue to gain traction. As they do, professionals can look to manufacturing to see just how powerful these systems are.

Keep reading: Digital Twins: A Revolution in Workplace Management

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Digital Twin Energy Management: Preparing for Greener Infrastructure

By Devon Maresco
Marketing Coordinator
SpaceIQ

We’re in the run-up to what could be a new age for the energy industry. With the climate change crisis top-of-mind, there’s a real focus on renewables and cleaner energy; specifically, establishing the infrastructure for these new technologies. As energy companies and municipalities look to a future of renewable infrastructure, they’re also paying mind to the importance of digital twin energy management.

Embracing green energy isn’t as simple as setting up solar arrays and wind farms. To get the energy from these generation points to the grid takes a modernized infrastructure. And, there’s a difference between cobbling together new energy systems and preparing the country for a future dependent on them. Here’s a look at why digital twinning in the energy industry is so vital for the future.

Green energy systems require modern architecture

There are layers of complexity in establishing a modern energy grid. For starters, the mode of clean energy generation is much more vast. Take solar power, for example. You can set up an array anywhere there’s plentiful sunlight. This means more opportunities for power substations around the country. More arrays mean a broader infrastructure network to build out—as opposed to centralized power plants outside of major cities.

There are also the generators themselves to consider. Solar arrays, wind turbines, and natural gas pumps represent modern hardware. Many of these systems are digitally enabled, which means the grid they tie into needs to be equally as intelligent. What good are a cloud-enabled accelerometer and voltmeter for a wind turbine if there’s no system to receive that data?

Digital twins provide the digital framework engineers and energy companies need to build out a more robust, more intelligent energy system. From point of creation to point of delivery, a digital twin provides end-to-end energy management capabilities.

Energy management goes both ways

Digital twins in energy are also important from a commoditization standpoint. A growing number of residential and commercial properties have their own energy generation equipment, independent from the grid. The ability to sell clean energy back to the grid means energy managers need a way to measure units of energy as commodities within the system.

How much energy did commercial property XYZ consume over the past 30 days? How much energy did commercial property ABC generate and sell back to the grid in that time? What is the net cost per kilowatt hour for the difference in energy delivered vs. returned? These are real questions that accompany a smarter energy grid. Digital twins help provide the context to answer them—and to optimize energy management.

Asset management is critically important

The asset management capabilities offered by digital twins makes them instrumental in establishing the new green energy infrastructure. Solar arrays, wind turbines, and other equipment are off-site and function independently, save for routine maintenance. Energy management companies need a way to monitor and manage these assets without babysitting them.

A digital twin can provide deep insight into the status and performance of point-of-generation equipment. Turbine revolution trends can tell a story of a potential problem if one generates fewer rotations than its peers on a wind farm. Likewise, a drop in pressure at a natural gas extraction site can alert maintenance teams to a fault before it results in outages. Digital twins are key in asset management, which paves the way for efficiency, reliability and consistency—must-have traits for energy producers, brokers, and consumers.

Local vs. regional vs. national systems

Let’s not forget that the United States isn’t on a single energy grid. Cities are independent of state and regional grids, which make up a patchwork national grid. While many systems are set up to freely exchange power, there are still obstacles. These obstacles will become more pronounced as local grids modernize faster than others.

Through digital twins, grid operators can instantly communicate with nearby municipalities to coordinate shortages or excesses. Moreover, they’ll have the ability to track and trace energy generation and utilization over broader ranges and service areas. If the grid in Tacoma, WA goes down and Seattle needs to supply power, they’ll have the systems oversight needed to sync up and jumpstart supply—all while keeping the receipts in order.

The energy sector is getting more complex

The digital twin energy sector use-case is only a small part of the modernization taking part in this sector. Energy management stands to benefit from a wealth of emerging technologies, including the likes of blockchain and machine learning.

From the production of green energy to energy sharing across grids and efficient cost control systems, there’s a lot riding on a modernization of the North American power grid. Digital twins help to ensure we’re approaching modernizations and advancements the right way—and that they make sense as part of a larger, more complex approach to energy management.

There’s a bright future for energy ahead, and it’s riding on the opportunities offered by digital twins.

Keep reading: Digital Twins in Oil and Gas