Upcoming Meetings

Jul 31

IFMA & USGBC 2018 Summer Blast

Join us at a LI Ducks Game for Summer Fun

Register Now

Aug 13

August 2018 Board Meeting

Monthly meeting of the Board of Directors

Sep 10

September 2018 Board Meeting

Monthly meeting of the Board of Directors

Blog

From Smart Buildings Come Smart Cities

The advent of smart buildings continues to transform the modern workplace. As artificial intelligence, automation, and other technological innovations take the place of old and outdated systems, facilities managers now find it simpler and more convenient to manage the buildings they are tasked with overseeing.

From the rise of smart buildings, however, comes the creation of smart cities. Smart cities show all the promise and potential of changing the manner in which people will live their everyday lives. They also could solve many of the dilemmas that arise from a booming global population.

What are Smart Cities?

The concept of smart cities comes directly from the creation and use of smart buildings today. Like a smart building, a smart building will incorporate technological inventions like automation, artificial intelligence, and other aspects of the Internet of Things. The networking of a smart city's technology will allow it to serve its residents and make everyday life within the city safer, more convenient, and more comfortable.

Specifically, a smart city will rely on this network to monitor, control, and adapt to many facets of everyday life. It will be able to predict and accommodate the weather, daylight or darkness, occupancy patterns, and more in order to make the city's environment as positive as possible for residents. This technology will make jobs like facilities management easier because it will effectively be able to control the internal temperature of buildings, adapt and control lighting within individual neighborhoods, and even collect data of buildings' occupancy rates to enhance public safety.

The Role of Smart Cities

What role will smart cities play in tomorrow's world? To start, they will address a number of global environmental concerns that are expected to arise including an aging population, the expansion of the middle class, and more people moving to urban areas throughout the world. Smart cities are being designed to be able to monitor, control, and protect precious resources like food, water, housing, transportation, and even open spaces within communities.

This monitoring and protection of resources will maintain and progressively improve the standard of living for everyone in the city. It also will effectively encourage social interactions among people, which should eliminate what is dubbed as the loneliness of convenience that is found with modern society today. Smart cities will promote the ideal use of public spaces to foster connections among residents and as a result make it a better place to live.

But how will a smart city be able to accomplish this goal? Smart city designers and planners say that it will be able to collect civic data by monitoring the human experience and applying meaning to that data. It will then use the data to determine how the environment of the city should be built or changed.

Ideally, because of the collection and application of civic data to the environment, people who live in the smart city should be able to anticipate the behavior of fellow citizens and react in an appropriate manner. As a result, planners envision smart cities having a 20 percent reduction in crime. In fact, public safety will be promoted through the use of CCTV, visitor management, and access control. These facets will add layers of protection to buildings and individual sites within the city.

Smart Cities in Development

The existence of smart cities could soon be a reality for many parts of the world. In fact, several such cities are already in the works. In Toronto, Sidewalk Labs is creating a smart neighborhood that when finished will combine smart technology and urban design. Specifically, the buildings in this neighborhood are being designed to react to the weather.

Likewise, in Belmont Arizona, Bill Gates is investing millions of dollars for the creation of autonomous vehicles. This smart city is being designed to become a sophisticated hub with public WiFi areas, drone deliveries, and demand management of resources like electricity.

Smart cities could soon change the way that people live their everyday lives. The technology expected to be available in these cities will make life safer, comfortable, and more convenient for people of all ages. They also will address and manage environmental concerns expected to come with a growing worldwide population and a limited amount of resources like food and water.

If you're an IFMA-LI member, please login so you can comment on this article.

Read More

Building Information Modeling (BIM) and Facility Management

Building Information Modeling (BIM) and Facility Management

In the architectural, engineering, and construction industries, time can be of the essence when it comes to erecting and maintaining buildings. Because you and your staff may not have time to tour an entire structure to identify and troubleshoot issues, you need a faster way to stay on top of the tasks for which your clients have hired you. You can stay on schedule and save costs when you implement building information modeling in your project today.

What is BIM?

Building Information Modeling, or BIM, is a concept that has existed in these industries for more than 50 years. However, it was not until the 1990s that BIM was brought to the limelight and given more credence by architects and engineers. Even at that, this concept was not truly held in its highest regard until the last decade.

Nonetheless, BIM is an organizational and maintenance system designed to hold all of the pertinent information about a building or facility. These details are housed in a three-dimensional model that serves as a database through which users can visually traverse to gain key facts of the structure.

In many ways, BIM is similar to the architectural concept of modern parametic modeling. Despite its long history in these three industries, it is just now gaining traction in CAD.

Primary Uses for BIM

BIM is used for a variety of purposes in architecture, engineering, and construction today. In particular, it has proven essential in the actual architectural and design processes of new structures and facilities. Design teams can create, change, and adapt these three-dimensional databases until they reach the ideal solution for the building processes for which they were hired.

Additionally, BIM is frequently used for civil and municipal purposes especially for the creation and building of infrastructures like subway tunnels, highways, public roads, energy and utility services placement, and railways. It increasingly is being utilized for urban master-planning and smart city designs.

However, in terms of facilities management BIM proves essential in analyzing and designing systems for a structure that are practical, cost effective, and relatively fast to use without compromising the integrity of the project. When implemented fully from the very first day of the design process, BIM can bring together all of the other steps, sparing the client from unnecessary expense and inconvenience. It also reveals all of the possibilities about which the client may not have been previously aware.

The Benefits of BIM

With this information in mind, you may wonder what exactly BIM can bring to any project for which your services are hired. Why would you implement this technology rather than rely on tried and true if not entirely outdated processes?

To start, BIM allows the design team to coordinate all of their efforts into a single endeavor. The three-dimensional database provides a visual and realistic representation of the facility that you are or will manage. This coordination hastens the team's work and keeps the project on time if not ahead of schedule.

Next, BIM helps your team avoid trade conflicts and also reserves all of the available space for the actual design and construction of the building. Without this visual database, you may have to second guess yourself or your designers and architects. You could risk using more space than what you actually have to work with or failing to use the minimal space required for the project.

Finally, BIM ultimately saves the client money and time, assets that are essential to any company's bottom line. When you are given a tight budget and a tighter deadline, you could easily spare both when you utilize building information modeling during the step-by-step processes involved in bringing the project to a successful conclusion.

BIM has proven its worth in today's AEC industries. This technology has made it easy for facilities managers, designers, and others to gain critical information about a building without actually having to walk through the physical location. It brings together key processes in the design, building, and management efforts while sparing clients unnecessary costs.

If you're an IFMA-LI member, please login so you can comment on this article.

Read More

Effective Security Technology Solutions for Facility Managers

 Effective Security Technology Solutions for Facility Managers

One of the most crucial responsibilities of facility managers is to provide and maintain a safe work environment for all employees. Daniel O’Neill, the president of Applied Risk Management, emphasizes that “facility executives should seek a balance of sustainability and security from the beginning of the design process.” The most effective security technology solutions for facility managers involve the company’s building design, alarm systems, video surveillance systems, security personnel team and smart technology integration.

Building Design

The best facility managers know that a building’s design and office layout play a big role in employee productivity and satisfaction, but they may be surprised to learn that these traits are potential solutions to building security issues. The WBDG Secure/Safe Committee believes that “protective measures are generally achieved through principles of structural dynamics, nonlinear material response, and ductile detailing.” Bollards, protective glazing, setbacks and structural hardening are all measures that can be taken to improve upon a building’s structural integrity. Recent new articles around the globe indicate a rising trend of weaponizing automobiles, and a simple solution like bollards can effectively protect employees and property from any vehicle damage.

Alarm Systems

One of the most commonly sought out solutions to security issues is the installation of an access control alarm monitoring system. Ronald Ronacher, an associate principal at ARUP, agrees that alarms are “something most companies will start with because it helps address the basic security principles of deter, detect, delay and deny.” Alarm systems manage entry into entire buildings or certain rooms to ensure that only those with proper authorization can access areas. Basic alarm systems will alert individuals when unauthorized intrusions occur. Alarm systems are versatile and can be integrated with various other technologies such as video surveillance, audio control and other smart technology. IML Security, a diverse security solutions company, specializes in commercial, corporate, industrial and institutional access control systems, master key solutions and other such services.

Video Surveillance

Facility managers should take note that efficient night-time lighting and video surveillance will deter theft and reduce trespassing. In addition, video surveillance ensures OSHA compliance, reduces liability issues and monitors all incoming and outgoing visitors. Video surveillance systems are a huge deterrent, so many suggest placing some cameras within plain view. It isn’t necessary to resort to expensive systems. Current technology allows for cost-effective solutions depending on the needs of your facility. High quality images may not be necessary for all situations, and analog cameras are much less expensive alternative.

Security Personnel

Your employee’s safety is more than a legal obligation. It should be seen by facility managers as a major priority and solution. While hiring security guards is a long-term expense, it can be cost-effective for facilities at risk for criminal attackers, emergencies or handling of high-priority, expensive property. Each facility manager should create a checklist of potential risks when analyzing the benefits that security personnel could offer their company. Robert Sollars of Silvertrac explains that security officers are “the backbone of the security industry…[who] maintain control, provide customer service, and remain constantly observant.”

Smart Technology

Smart technology integrates current security technology with the Internet of Things. Devices such as key systems, video surveillance, audio recording, light switches, drones, A/C Units and much more can all be connected and compartmentalized into a single control center. Adding robots to your security team can be very beneficial. Autonomous data machines can provide benefits like constant coverage, immediate alerts, improved information sharing and much faster response times. An additional benefit to moving your company’s security needs to the cloud is that it is much more cost-effective to have wireless protocols protecting your building than physical ones like security officers, key-locks or proximity cards. This ‘new world’ of security technology provides more effective protection systems, more efficient streamlining, better information sharing and an overall easier ability to manage security issues.

The most effective security technology solutions for facility managers involve the company’s building design, alarm systems, video surveillance systems, security personnel team and smart technology integration. While most systems of the past relied on implementing physical security measures, this new internet-based smart technology is slowly creating a new security paradigm that facility managers need to stay up-to-date on. Integrating the older and newer security models can be cost-effective no matter your company’s size.

If you're an IFMA-LI member, please login so you can comment on this article.

Read More

Mail Management in Today’s Work Landscape

Mail Management

There was a time when sorting and delivering a package or letter was as easy as pushing a mail cart throughout your building. Employees worked in offices or other dedicated work spaces and maintained a specific and consistent schedule. Most often, the parcel was handed directly to the recipient at their desk, or, at worst, left with their secretary or co-worker.

Today, employees rarely spend all of their time at the office. Studies report that approximately 60% of employees now work outside the office at least part of the time. Job-sharing, telecommuting and multiple office locations have led to a much more chaotic and frenzied work atmosphere. ‘Remote work’ is booming.  And whether they’re working from home, a favorite coffee shop, a coworking space, or somewhere else entirely, it is apparent that the 9-to-5, 40-hour work week is gone. And it’s not coming back.

Ensuring that important mail gets delivered on time to the right person is more difficult now than ever. Luckily, there are resources available to help facility managers streamline the mail delivery process. Here are three steps to successfully execute mail delivery as the workplace and mail management landscapes progress concurrently with technology.

Implement Mobile Tools

In order for your mail delivery system to be successful, your team must be equipped with the right tools for the job. That means supplying your mail staff with barcode scanners and mobile applications to create a more efficient and reliable mail cycle.

Barcode scanners digitize incoming mail data and enable mailroom employees to sort and track each piece of mail faster and more easily. Mobile apps that can easily be downloaded to cellular phones or other handheld devices easily capture signatures, dates and timestamps in real time as mail travels from source to recipient. This allows building personnel to deliver mail with greater efficiency, accountability and visibility.

Computerize the Mail Management Process

Mail management software has made it simple for organizations to automate tasks such as data entry, item indexing, storage, routing, tracking and sending receipts. There are many software options available for facility and building managers to choose from. This software can send an automatic email notification to the employee letting them know they need to retrieve their package, cutting down on the time team members spend tracking down mail recipients.

Facilities can also install kiosks to assist recipients with mail retrieval. Streamlining the mail distribution process will help ensure prompt and proper delivery in spite of the challenges of a mobile workforce.

Utilize Digital History to Combat Mail Delivery Issues

Prior to the development of mailroom software, undelivered or misplaced packages caused a headache that often required a substantial time commitment to solve. Thanks to current technology, well-equipped mailrooms are able to keep a record of every move a piece of mail makes from arrival to delivery.

Automation apps monitor each step that a package or letter takes in real time. If an item fails to reach its destination, FM’s have the ability to track its history and determine its location. Real-time monitoring also helps mailroom personnel provide specific and accurate delivery estimates.

Today’s business landscape is both complicated and dynamic. Facilities managers are facing greater challenges than ever before. Adapting to our client’s needs requires flexibility and foresight. Fortunately, technology is leading the change, offering heightened knowledge and mobility. With the right tools in place, we have the power to improve efficiencies on an organizational and individual level, establishing ourselves as industry leaders in the process.

By following the suggestions above, you can create a mail delivery system that is efficient and adaptable. Your team and your customers will benefit from greater consistency and accountability, a reduction in human error, lower operational costs and the peace of mind that comes with knowing the job is being done right.

If you're an IFMA-LI member, please login so you can comment on this article.

Read More

Smart Sensors Will Bring Facilities Management Into a New Era

Long Island Smart Buildings

New technologies mean that complete building automation is coming sooner than most think. These innovative developments will usher in a new era for facility management, allowing large scale networking and digitization to manage commercial buildings.

The impact that the Internet of Things on the facility managment industry is wide sweeping. It will allow the delivery of a whole new range of solutions and services to facility managers that are revolutionary in their application.

A recent article from Facility Executive explains that "smart sensors" installed throughout modern buildings will aggregate data that will help FMs manage their spaces with mush greater efficeincy.

"The digital transformation in commercial buildings has already started and is gaining momentum. Facility managers will be among the first to benefit from the IoT revolution in driving down operating costs while improving safety and security. As smart sensors are key enablers for building intelligence, the process of identifying and selecting the proper sensors is critical. New types of smart sensors, with compelling advantages, are emerging and deserve special attention."

To read more on the subject, head over to Facility Executive's website to read the complete article.

To Post Your Comment, IFMA-LI Members can log in to this site.

Read More