Top 10 Factors Driving Centralized Facilities Management (CFM)

Posted by Tom Willie on Sep 15, 2015 9:00:00 AM

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Developing a Centralized Facility Management (CFM) strategy is a critical component of energy management  for the facility of the future—particularly for critical facilities that have  onsite generation and require high levels of resiliency. When the lights go out, bad things happen and lives could potentially be put at risk. Blue Pillar has worked with hundreds of critical facilities nationwide to adopt a CFM strategy that improves resiliency and compliance and prepares them for what's to come. In this post, we explore the top 10 factors driving the adoption of this strategy as an industry best practice.

  1. Mounting pressure to do more with less.  Just like their brethren in the C-suite, today’s facilities leaders are required to do more with less—budgets are being drastically cut, staff reduced, and aging equipment is being used beyond its life expectancy. CFM helps facility managers get more out of existing equipment while future-proofing the building against stranded assets from legacy equipment.
  2. Need for C-Suite Visibility.  In the past, facilities management was not the priority it is today.  With costs continuing to escalate, facilities leaders are taking note and implementing programs to become more effective, efficient, compliant and secure—resulting in immediate and long-term cost savings.
  3. New Technologies Facilities management has historically been a  manual, labor-intensive process.  Clipboard-toting crews in a truck can be easily aided by enterprise software and systems. This centralized approach to remotely test equipment and automate compliance testing to the latest industry standard reduces risks when compliance requirements change or staff retires.
  4. Eliminate Manual Processes.  Simply put, there are less people to do more work than ever before.  Automating and remotely controlling certain central key functions will free up time for time-strapped facilities staff to do other important duties.
  5. Cybersecurity Concerns The headlines continue to tell the story—more and more organizations are being hacked than ever before.  For example, critical facilities like healthcare organizations have long been a target for intruders due to the amount of sensitive patient data they receive. Any "Internet-ready" equipment or cloud-based system connecting to a facility should be assessed from a cybersecurity perspective.
  6. Acquisitions. Fortune 500 companies in the U.S. are in acquisition mode—especially within the healthcare industry. Large multi-site health systems looking to grow by adding facilities may not understand how they can connect old or legacy equipment into their systems. For any company looking to acquire facilities, it can be daunting to sort through the complexities presented by a wide range of legacy equipment and systems by function, manufacturer and age.  Having a single common platform to bring all the equipment on-board can be a Godsend and future-proof your facility.
  7. Compliance Reporting Perhaps one of the most stressful, disliked and overlooked functions of facility operations is compliance testing. This one function—where poor outcomes can be catastrophic—is particularly stressful in the healthcare industry.  Here, without the adoption of proven CFM practices, compliance reporting will continue to be a risky, annual fire drill.  Advanced technologies are able to automate most of the requirements, in real-time and year-round.  Requirements are expanding into industries beyond healthcare and the demands are greater than ever before.  Continuing to do compliance reporting at the last minute in order to meet timing requirements is a risk most facilities should not be willing to take.
  8. Energy Costs.  Energy costs continue to rise, and reducing energy costs is a top-priority; if you think energy costs seem high now, wait until next year, and the year after.  There is no cost relief in sight, but by centralizing facilities management, providers will find relief in being able to garner the keen insight and data necessary to combat rising costs, both now and in the future.  When managed locally, providers are resigned to simply play by the rules of the local utility.  By centralizing energy data, providers are able to take a “Best Practices” management approach.
  9. Unreliable Power Grid.  In 2014 there were more power outages in the U.S. than at any time in history, and for longer periods of time.  As the power grid continues to get stretched further and further, instability is the result. 2015 is on track to be even more unstable than 2014.  This puts providers at continued risk, and increases the importance of having a proven, tested emergency power system in place.  By centralizing those functions, risk is reduced, equipment life is extended and dependency on an unstable grid is minimized.
  10. Retiring WorkforceThe average length of employment with today’s facility personnel is 27 years, and 50% of today’s facility employees are expected to retire with the next 10 years.  This workforce departure will produce a conundrum never seen before in facilities management. New technologies available through CFM strategies help address this situation head-on, and provide the economical and practical solutions leaders are looking for.

Are any of these factors affecting your facility? If your critical facility is experiencing some or all of the factors listed above, leveraging a CFM strategy could provide a multitude of benefits—saving money and helping to future-proof your facility to avoid stranded assets. To learn more download our free Centralized Facilities Management Implementation Guide to learn how easy it can be to get this effort started inside your facilities today.

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Topics: Energy Management, CFM, Resiliency, Healthcare Facilities, Facility of the Future, Internet of Things