Five Steps to Using Real-Time Data for Better Capital Planning for Facilities Managers

January 19, 2018 Greg Fasullo

Facilities Managers can leverage historical and real-time data through smart building solutionsfor better capital planning than ever before.

Historical and real-time data can be leveraged in facilities management for a variety of purposes, including better capital planning. Better capital planning is directly associated with increased confidence from the C-suite and more-efficient processes and practices in your operations. The key to leveraging data for better capital planning lies in following a few steps.

  1. Defining the Needs of Your Facility Is Key to Using the Right to Data for Better capital planning

To properly use facility and asset data for capital forecasting, Facilities Managers need to be tracking the correct data. Simply knowing where your assets are is not the same thing as knowing exactly how your assets are operating. Also, understanding the energy usage of a facility is different from creating a best-guess model based on last week’s utility rate. To refine the capital forecasting process, Facilities Managers need to track specific, line-item data on each asset, and this information must be compiled and analyzed to define total capital needs for both an asset and an overall enterprise.

  1. Prioritize Facilities Needs and Budget Based on Data

The information collected in step one can now be used to prioritize facility needs. Obviously, some facilities may have more needs than others, and some months may see an uptick in the number of maintenance work orders. As stated across dozens of facilities management magazines, ranging from to FacilitiesNet, deferred maintenance is the arch-enemy of effective facilities maintenance. However, it is important to distinguish between continuous deferred maintenance and short-term deferred maintenance. Putting off a repair for a week is not as costly as delaying the repair for months, if not years, says Prioritizing the needs and budget allows Facilities Managers to maintain control and reduce facilities spend.

  1. Leverage Smart Technology to Solicit Bids from Service Providers or Vendors

Historical and real-time data can also be used to identify the frequency of maintenance and facility needs. When choosing a field service provider to make repairs or address critical facility needs, Facilities Managers typically have two options. They can contact field service providers when a problem arises, or they may be able to purchase comprehensive, holistic programs, which addressed multiple facilities maintenance needs throughout the year. In exchange for a continuous work relationship, vendors or service providers may be enticed to offer lower bids.

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  1. Identify the Savings Possible Through Preventative, Proactive Maintenance Programs

Calculating the savings between using a traditional, reactive maintenance program and a proactive, preventative maintenance program also relies on the use of historical and real-time data. Facilities Managers at a total maintenance costs from reactive maintenance and compare the results against the total savings derived from last maintenance over the course of a given time. However, implementing modern, smart building technologies and solutions will likely increase the short-term maintenance costs. This is due to the identification of potential issues that have not yet matriculated into an operation-impacting problem.

  1. Use Data to Increase C- Suite Support in Your Program

Each of the afore-mentioned uses of data can also be leveraged to increase C-Suite support for the facilities management department, as well as the creation and management of the preventative, proactive maintenance plan. Since C-suite executives are focused on long-term savings, not short-term costs, they are more likely to support a preventative maintenance plan with detailed, Better capital planning than an assumption-based spreadsheet.

Follow These Steps to Achieve Lasting, Better Capital Planning in Facilities Management

Hasten and improve the accuracy of your budget through better capital planning with historical and real-time data collection and analysis. Visit ENTOUCH online to learn more about how actionable-analytics can shape the future of your facilities management department.

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