The Benefits of Mobile Technology in Facilities Management
The concept of delivering a comprehensive and integrated Facilities Management service is an important business goal for many, as consolidation of suppliers and economies of scale can result in major cost reduction for the client and increased revenue for the FM provider.
However, this type of integrated Facilities Management delivery model has its challenges. Most companies have their staff working in skill silos, i.e. the concierge staff only do one function, but they could check whether a circuit breaker has tripped if they were directed.
Top 5 Challenges in Delivering Integrated Facilities Management
Is your company facing any of these challenges?
- How can we manage disparate staff delivering different services over a single contract and ensure adherence to process?
- How can we have visibility of the location of staff and access to their skill base so that they can be deployed in the most cost effective manner?
- We have staff and systems gained by acquisition and are struggling to integrate them into the existing structure.
- Staff have a mixture of specific systems to their role, and corporate systems that are used by all staff and we need them to be able to access everything.
- Clients all have different requirements and contractual terms that means modelling them into a single system would be impossible.
One of the fundamental issues with all of the challenges above is that FM providers have a desire and passion to deliver innovative services but have to try and do this based on legacy systems.
A New Way of Working Through Mobile Technology
To deliver new services in a sustainable and profitable way requires a new approach to managing the resources without the constraints inherent in any large successful enterprise. Clearly, this is easier said than done, but to deliver effective change requires a clear goal and a roadmap of how to get there.
One of those changes is mobile technology which can be an enabler for digital transformation and new ways of working. It is very likely that in their personal lives, your staff use more modern technology than they do as part of their working day. It is this mobile technology that must be harnessed for mobile workforces.
Mobile working technology provides facilities management teams with new, more efficient ways of working. They can access and record information at the point of service. Back-office systems are linked with all information synced seamlessly and records updated without the need to return to the office.
Utilising Mobile Working Technology as an Enabler
The opportunity to use mobile technology to unlock a more predictive facilities management service is an attractive concept. In theory, it would allow organisations to deliver pre-emptive services before an unfolding situation becomes critical. When something becomes critical, it’s already costlier to rectify as resources and equipment need to be available as soon as possible, or there is a breach of SLAs.
Imagine that you could predict when an asset is close to needing servicing, a visit can be arranged at the facilities management provider’s convenience (and at the least expense). Leading to a better service for the customer at a lower overall cost of delivery; clearly a win win!
Predictive Facilities Management and Mobile Technology
To start delivering this type of service, there needs to be a number of technologies and principles in place. The enablers required to deliver “Predictive FM” are:
- A wide-reaching data network, that uses wired, wireless and mobile connections;
- Assets that have embedded “smart” technology or that can be augmented with smart tags;
- Mobile data capture and mobile process management tools, that are capable of interacting with current technology and are future-proofed to deal with dynamic technologies.
Well, the good news is that these enablers are already in place and are being referred to as “The Internet of Things”. This means that assets and items have the capability of transmitting their status/condition via the data networks.
Some assets already have “smart” embedded systems that can notify when conditions are beginning to reach the limit of their tolerances.
Totalmobile’s mobile working solution can use the data to automatically schedule pre-emptive visits and provides job information and tasks to staff with the required skills to carry out the remedial work.
A New Way of Working in Facilities Management
This new way of working needs facilities management organisations to have a much more innovative approach to reviewing working practices, unconstrained by current thinking. One that embraces mobile working and introduces new processes and management systems.
The question is, are you ready?
Now that we’ve explored new mobile technology and how they transform field teams, as well as the opportunity for predictive facilities management, let’s take a look at a real-life facilities management scenario.
How would you handle this typical Facilities Management scenario?
You have a Facilities Management contract that looks after all the services for a group of buildings, this includes hard facilities management, security, catering and cleaning.
Your customer logs a call that is an electrical circuit has gone down, you do not have an electrical qualified person onsite. The problem could be as simple as a circuit breaker has tripped.
- Do you send a man in a van who is electrically qualified and has all the tools and test equipment required to handle almost any eventuality but will take up to 4 hours to arrive?
2) Do you ask a non-qualified person such as a security operative to check to see if the circuit breaker has tripped and potentially fix the problem within minutes resulting in a happy customer and a happy service provider because it has cost you zero!
If the answer is 2 then how do you manage that? How do you ensure that the security operative knows where the circuit board is and is the right one? How can you reliably communicate what the security operative is seeing to a qualified person that could guide him through some simple checks that may resolve the issue without breaching any regulatory requirements?
If there was a system that could manage and control that interaction and keep an audit trail of the actions taken and be interactive so that the least cost best service option could be delivered, would you be interested in it?
Mobile working from Totalmobile
Totalmobile have implemented many innovative solutions for a range of customers including in the FM and construction sectors where we have enabled new ways of working that has allowed our customers to win new business and implement innovative contracting vehicles that were previously unachievable!
To learn more about Totalmobile and their customers, please visit https://www.totalmobile.co.uk/facilities-management-field-service/ or contact us at www.totalmobile.co.uk/contact