Much has been written lately about the ways in which the global Pandemic has been a catalyst of change. The rise of hybrid working models is surely the most obvious consequence.
Quite rightly, there has been a lot of discussion about how this affects the working lives of individuals and the operational aspects of businesses. But it is also likely to have a major impact on digital transformation in the built environment – another trend that was already underway when Covid-19 arrived.
Most businesses contemplating this new era of un-predictable building density and occupancy levels and a shift to more remote working – will confront one big challenge:
How to optimize the use of space and resources wherever people are working.
It will not take them long to realize that making extensive use of digital services represents the best way forward. But in a time of huge uncertainty in the world, it could be difficult to win the support of those in control of the finances.
What follows is a list of points that will make it easier for facilities managers everywhere to build a compelling case for digital transformation…
1. Going digital gives your organization the flexibility it requires
Until recently, hard-wired, and on-premises building management systems (BMS) were capable of ‘getting the job done’ for most companies. But now, the key requirement of most Facilities Managers (FMs) is to have a system that delivers greater control, flexibility, and easier identification of issues (and complaints). They no longer want to control their buildings manually or have a system that ‘controls itself.’ FMs and other key stakeholders want clear insights into how it is performing and what is happening.
The other key factor is that today’s working patterns are different: many employees will be spending at least part of their week working from home. So, it is important to be able to automatically optimize the building based on occupancy levels and make system adjustments accordingly. This data can be retrieved from the room booking apps, for example - and the system can alter the control logic based on this data. It is only by switching to cloud-based operations that this flexibility can be achieved.
2. Cloud-based building management is the cornerstone of digital transformation
Shifting to a unified cloud-based building management system is the most commercially astute investment you can make right now. For example, our suite of Priva Digital Services is at the forefront of an innovative approach to building management that takes advantage of the flexibility and scalability of the cloud.
The BMS platform is shifting towards the cloud. This opens a wide range of powerful resources that enable users to analyse the combined data from multiple locations. By collecting this data, it is possible to forecast trends and patterns - and alter the system, as necessary.
Shifting to a unified cloud-based BMS is the most commercially astute investment you can make
3. Digital services mean no waste – financially or capacity-wise.
Making the decision to move away from an on-premises system will free up physical space. And, with digital services such as Priva’s being very competitively priced, this is a rapid route to major savings – particularly from an IT maintenance perspective. For example, there is no longer a need to maintain - the controller, gateways, and the server – and no more challenges with storing the data or making the control logic accessible. With digital services, a lot of these infrastructures are maintained centrally.
4. Digital transformation will make your business more secure
Cyber-attacks on corporate networks rose by 50% in 2021 compared to 2020 (1). From ransomware to DDOS, the range of attacks is growing all the time. Only a tiny percentage of companies can hope to keep on top of the problem without external help. So, migrating to a renowned and proven cloud platform – Microsoft Azure in the case of Priva Digital Services – will make your business more secure. It will also take a whole area of worry away from day-to-day operations.
The rate of digital transformation will continue to vary – but the direction of travel is clear for all to see. Having these points as the basis of your case should make it easier to get the executives and financiers on your side.
(1) Check Point Research: https://blog.checkpoint.com/2022/01/10/check-point-research-cyber-attacks-increased-50-year-over-year/