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"Facilities Management needs, differ from business to business.
FacilitiesDesk CMMS and FacilitiesDesk CAFM Software are the two products with rich set of apt features
and benefits. "
Source : FacilitiesDesk
Facilities Management is Moving Forward with Technology
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Facilities Management Trends,
Facilities Management Software Systems used to function in separate technology silos. To meet the
conventional IT infrastructures now vendors are adopting Web-based services, On-demand and other
rapidly emerging technologies.
As Facility management systems congregate with traditional IT infrastructures, budding standards are
facilitating data sharing between building systems as well as with other business applications, recuperating
efficiency and real-time control over building operating costs. Concerns on information security, juvenile
standards, the disinclination of vendors to give up proprietary technologies and ignorance among IT
professionals of the convergence trend are all slowing the pace of this transformation, but its gaining
When combined with information from a Facilities Management System, space & property information from
a mapping application such as AutoCAD provides an integrated view that allows enhanced analysis in
various spatial contexts for professionals responsible for asset tracking, maintenance, space utilization and
Facilities managers are driving the change by challenging more-open systems. They're pushing Facility
management software vendors to transform today's closed technologies into Web-enabled applications
running over industry-standard IP networks. And the management of facility is likely to increasingly fall to IT.
Technologies like CAD, GIS etc are matured ones that have evolved in parallel for over 20 years. As the
technology that solves the inefficiencies of working with GIS and CAD rapidly evolves, new opportunities
emerge for facility and property managers:
- Expand visibility and oversight into all aspects of building operations and asset management
- Allocate space efficiently
- Prepare for emergency or preventive maintenance measures
- Forecast and budget for maintenance
- Manage & Track Assets
- Plan for relocations
Just there & be Prepared for more...
Facility Management folks are entering an era where practically everything is converging in their direction
and IT immensely broadens their horizons. IT won’t operate the Facility Management systems, but it will
serve the facilities staff as a customer in much the same way it does accounting and other departments
Many large companies already have centralized Facility management system in place that monitors and
controls the environment across their large buildings and campus facilities. These systems have begun to
migrate to more open IT infrastructure in much the same way that telecom and networks have converged.
Next-generation facility infrastructures will be much more integrated than simply banking on automated
facility management systems backed by IT network. The long-term vision is that you’ll be able to control
building operations based on preferences, criteria and business rules.
Open standards are just beginning to evolve and will likely breakdown the silos between facility operations
scoping up to elevator control starting from physical security. And the data from those systems are likely to
be shared with other business departments such as accounting. This will allow the making of smart buildings
as system applications are developed that can benefit from newly converged data streams and real-time
access to information.
Standards will permit information to be shared between the two systems and business decisions can be
made based on the merged data. But this emerging trend has fundamentally gone unseen by IT biggies got
driven by the facilities side.
Standardization has its journey bottom up. The pieces of successful IT/Facility management system
integration aren’t all in place as yet. Right now, the hitch is due to lack of an industry wide language to
program controls. Basic interfaces needs to be in place in order to have such control schemas to evolve. The
needed is an abstraction layer so that programmers or common users don’t have to learn control systems.
Vendors of Facility management application continue to move cautiously and cling to proprietary interfaces,
but the industry will move on with or without them. For more than control companies it’s the IT & software
that will lead the way. Today’s systems are just too proprietary to gain the economies of scale necessary to
manage standards of facility management systems. But the emerging standards will make it possible to
manage these systems within the IT management frameworks.
Technario in progress...
Facilities Managers can extend the benefit of today’s CAFM systems including data sets that allow drilldown
access to details from CAD drawings, historical information regarding maintenance or asset details,
relocation plans, as well as existing infrastructure. The options are limited only by the availability, accuracy
and access to data sources.
Computer-aided facilities management (CAFM) systems act as a vital repository of information for an
organization’s facilities and physical assets, ridding managers of the time-consuming and error-prone task
of updating multiple spreadsheets. A CAFM system offers end users with a consistent way to view, track, and
maintain most aspects of an organization’s facilities and assets.
In addition, facilities managers benefit from the ability to create valuable reports which provide information
critical to financial projections, and ultimately the bottom line, by gaining greater control over space
allocation, asset management, and other areas of property management.
If we want to achieve full value from one of the most important advances since the birth of facilities
management, we need to understand what FM software can do for us and identify the right CAFM system for
Information is critical but you need to go the right way about using it!! Paper systems and
spreadsheet management with volume and CAFM can lead to frustration whenever deployed
CAFM applications help plan, monitor and manage property, space and assets, streamline the
management and planned maintenance of buildings and services, control resources and run a help desk to
handle reactive maintenance.
Facility Management software users report cost and time savings and much tighter control on cost run. They
say systems give more meaningful information for improved decision making, and all-important health and
safety compliance. But CAFM can generate delays and frustrations because systems have been purchased
with insufficient forethought.
Getting a handle on some of those forethoughts:
Assess your ROI
The levels and verge at which adopting CAFM software becomes cost effective are different in each business
scenario. So you will need to consider factors such as present and projected scale of business, workload
volumes, efficiency and success altitude.
By now you’ll be into the detail of what CAFM systems can offer and what you need. So you’ll need to
compare current functionality and cost with required functionality and its cost, weigh your budget up and
decide whether the payback period seems acceptable.
Working practices may have to acclimatize, and you will certainly want to reassess reporting. IT issues need
serious deliberation including user licenses, access levels, and web or remote access. Think too about
whether the new system can offer the growth and scalability you’ll require in the future.
Payment options include a one-off cost for a perpetual software license, possibly involving a leasing
agreement, an annual software cost paid on a rolling basis, or outsourcing server hosting to a professional
When preparing the financial case, business look three or four years ahead, and don’t compromise longterm
profitability by cutting corners. Compare the total cost of ownership with the total expected fiscal
savings, typically aiming for a two to three year return on investment.
Request for Proposals
Having decided on fiscal budget, if you choose to you can create a Request for Proposal. Choice should
involve checking vendors’ economic stability and experience with your market sector. Ask for a project plan
demonstrating understanding of your needs and requirements.
Ownership of the source code is a plus, while full technical support, project management and post sales
support are key. Check also roadmap plans, the mechanism for escalating issues, and the willingness to
accept customization change requests to the software
The implementation plan is crucial for timely delivery, so be clear about the phases you need to consider and
the order in which the system must run. By comparing proposals with stated needs and determine which
vendor/system is the most appropriate to your requirements. When placing the contract include timescale
and KPIs and establish a project team. Import existing data into new software and run pre-installation and
sanity checks. Next, check integrations with third party applications are working before testing,
commissioning and signing off. Finally, ensure you train end users and technicians before going live.
Ensure hardware, data, staff and IT support are accessible on need basis, and take an active role in putting
the system into operation, and you’ll have done the best you can to ensure success for this exciting new
Adequate time and resource for training is imperative for success. You’ll want a training agenda and with
clearly defined scope and training outcomes and free documentation, an in-house database on which users
can practice. You might also consider first a ‘train the trainer’ programme.
Information is arguably the most valuable resource for facilities management departments, so it’s essential
to have a process that allows you to achieve full value from it and stir the organization on from weak paper
prone process. In conclusion, some important points to consider: document the existing business processes;
identify prospective improvements; chart the risk management processes; define the reporting
requirements; decide upon levels of integration with other products; consider various payment/provision
options; include all costs and savings in the financial proposal; scrutinize the potential vendor’s overall
package and experience; be aware of the future enhancements.
About ManageEngine FacilitiesDesk
FacilitiesDesk strives to be the world leader in Facilities, Asset and Maintenance Management.
FacilitiesDesk serves diverse range of organizations, with a signicant number in elds of
Banking/Finance/Insurance, Healthcare/Pharmaceuticals, Education, Hi-tech/IT/Manufacturing and
Government/NGO’s. A 30-day trial with full functionality is available for evaluation.
More about FacilitiesDesk on: www.facilitiesdesk.com