Because of the Internet of Things (IoT), facility management is changing. Fortunately for facility managers, this means that many menial, time-consuming tasks are being automated, letting them focus on pressing issues.
IoT can’t replace facility managers, but it’s an excellent supplement for busy environments. Sensors and systems are working together to collect data and implement smart solutions. These changes don’t necessarily make facility managers’ lives easier, but they do let them get more done in a shorter amount of time.
Here are four facility management tasks that IoT can replace.
1. Day-to-Day Energy Monitoring
Facility managers are in charge of making sure that all the electrical systems — HVAC, lighting, alarms, and so on — are working smoothly. IoT is in charge of making sure these systems run efficiently.
Huge amounts of energy are wasted in buildings, but until now, there hasn’t been an easy, effective way to cut these costs. Luckily, IoT can monitor day-to-day energy usage and determine an efficient way to use energy without having any real impact on the facility.
More efficient usage can also mean less wear and tear on systems and infrastructure, extending the life of machinery. This also reduces the chance of something breaking down, making your job of fixing any breaks easier.
2. Scheduling and Assigning Tasks
IoT and facility management software are responsible for finding efficient ways to run your facility. This includes how you and your workers interact with the facility.
One benefit of IoT is that it notifies you of any problems in your facility, sometimes before they even occur. Because these systems interact on the cloud, facility managers can find out about and address these problems remotely within minutes of getting notified.
Facility managers can then send workers to fix the problem via the software, and workers can update any tasks they performed as well. This removes redundancies and ensures that all problems are addressed in a timely manner.
3. Safety and Security
Safety and security often go overlooked. Because IoT is constantly monitoring your facility, it will notify you if any problems occur with smoke detectors, alarms, or any other sensors that keep the environment safe. IoT then collects all the data it receives and can enact quick fixes to mitigate, and sometimes even avoid, any damage.
As an example, a sudden fire in the facility could run rampant, but IoT can secure fire doors to ensure that the flames don’t spread throughout the facility. When facility managers are asleep or away on vacation, this automatic solution is critical.
4. Planning for the Future
A facility manager isn’t just accountable for ensuring smooth facility operations. Often, facility managers need to create a plan for the future, whether that involves finding ways to reduce costs or ensuring long-term efficiency.
The data gathered by IoT can shine a light on potential hurdles, cutting out a significant portion of the research a facility manager would need to perform.
IoT can also help prepare for any turnover, such as when a facility manager retires. The new facility manager would be able to smoothly transition into the role since IoT would have already collected pertinent information.
Improving Facility Management
While IoT continues to advance, it isn’t going to replace facility managers anytime soon. Instead, current facility managers should take advantage of IoT to improve facilities while increasing the efficiency of their role.
[Related Article: Technology and the New Standard for Facility Management]