How Facilities Managers Can Promote Smart Building Solutions to the C-Suite

January 29, 2018 Greg Fasullo

Think Like the C-Suite, Walk Like the C-Suite, Get Support From the C-Suite for Smart Building Solutions.

Even when facilities managers have completed presentations to the C-Suite previously for support for new technology, innovation, and planning, creating a presentation for smart building solutions is still different. Facilities managers must take a few unique considerations when presenting smart building solutions to the C-Suite, as well as when creating a presentation for the C-Suite. To simplify the process, facilities managers need to follow these basic steps.

Understand the Goals and Experience of the C-Suite

As explained by Elizabeth Dukes of iOfficeCorp, C-Suite executives are more likely to have a background in business administration, not necessarily facilities management. Such disconnect between work responsibilities may lead to confusion when presenting the facilities management budget to the C-Suite.

Use Capital Planning Throughout the Presentation

Capital planning must be included throughout every stage of the presentation. It should permeate the analyses, capital spends projections, impact on savings and effect on value creation. Simply stating, “this will save us money,” is not enough to enhance your presentation. Show where the savings will come from and how failure to act will lead to problems for the company and the brand.

For example, demonstrate to shareholders when continued deferred maintenance will dramatically result in increased expenditures for the facilities management department. If an HVAC system is continuously subject to deferred maintenance, it will need to be replaced before its expected lifespan. Depending on the size of your facility, as well as the degree of deferred maintenance, reflecting moderate to severe problems, replacement costs can easily soar into the millions of dollars.

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Additional factors to consider in presenting the costs of inaction include loss of competitive advantage. Companies across the globe are turning to smart building solutions to transform facilities management from a cost center to profit center. These increased savings in profit margins translate into lower product and service price points. In other words, your competitors have gained the ability to push their overall spend and cost to consumers down, and consumers will go to your competitors for a lower price. Capital planning and facilities management can build brand reputations and help keep prices down. In turn, this leads to greater trust and loyalty among your customer base.

The Presentation Must Drive an Outcome

During the presentation, stakeholders want to know what is happening, when it will happen, how it will happen, and what it means for the overall company. While the presentation should be succinct, less than 20 minutes, it must also build up to answering the ultimate question in the C-suite, “what is the outcome?” and “how does it create value?”

The outcome is the end-all point for a presentation regarding smart building solutions to the C-Suite. The outcome should leave stakeholders with a feeling of hope and opportunity, not fear and lackluster attention.

Get a Change Management Plan Ready to Go

Using capital planning for obtaining stakeholder support in smart building solutions is a great start, but what happens if C-Suite members greenlight your project? Do you know what solution to choose, and if so, do you understand their key benefits and realtistic ROI?

To answer these questions, you must also develop a change management plan, which must include the following:

  • How will facilities managers address existing facilities needs with current systems during implementation of smart building solutions?
  • How will facilities managers measure the performance of existing and new systems?
  • Facilities managers should have a goal, such as saving X% on energy costs within a given timeframe after initial implementation.
  • The facilities management team should establish leadership roles throughout the organization to help steer the project toward successful implementation, including individuals from the information technology department.

The change management plan must be ready before presenting information to the C-Suite if it is approved.

Start Planning Your C-Suite Presentation Now

Your time with the C-suite may be short, and failure to prepare a proper presentation for smart building solutions could leave your company flailing behind your competitors in the future. Use the steps outlined in this blog post to create an effective, winning smart building solutions’ presentation, and if you are uncertain about how to measure existing versus potential savings, ENTOUCH can help. Visit ENTOUCH online, or call 1-800-820-3511.

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