It is an eternal truth that – no matter what money has been allocated for a particular space or technology upgrade – facilities managers (FM’s) are always coming up against budgetary constraints. There is often a pressure to see if some costs can be shaved off a project – for example, by reducing its scope or selecting cheaper solutions.
Well, whatever issues they have faced in recent years, it is likely that FMs’ attention will be drawn even more firmly to the ‘bottom line’ for many years yet. With operational costs soaring at present, it is to be expected that some firms will look to halt or scale back new investments – including those allocated for improving existing buildings. And where such projects are given permission, greater expectations around return on investment (ROI) seem to be a certainty.
All of which means that new proposals will require an even sharper focus on cost efficiency and benefits. What follows, then, is a series of points to bear in mind when planning a project that will satisfy everyone – including the financial director.
Focus on improving the systems that can deliver the greatest efficiencies
At this point, many companies will have started installing more efficient LED lighting or heating technologies. But it could easily be the case that whole floors or buildings still need to be upgraded. Investing in these sorts of systems is always a good move as they frequently offer a ROI of three to four years – even on large-scale projects. Of course, the ROI period will reduce even further as energy prices continue to rise.
Building control and automation systems can bring immediate benefits
Investing in intelligent building technologies is a surefire way of reducing energy consumption and boosting general efficiency. For example, connecting a sensor-linked heating/cooling system to a centralized controller allows setpoints to be changed quickly and easily.
Increasingly, customers are also looking to utilize cloud-based platforms that can provide a lot of flexibility in terms of how infrastructures are controlled and managed. They also make it easier to identify and resolve problems, often without incurring the hassle and expense of on-site visits. Priva has responded to these developments with a growing stable of versatile cloud-based portfolio of Priva Digital Services.
Monitoring energy usage can have many longer-term advantages
Implementing systems that allow companies to keep a closer watch on energy consumption is a move with many financial benefits. From day one, it is possible to identify areas in which energy is being used unnecessarily. But in the longer-term, they will also give organizations the ability to work out how well they are progressing towards decarbonization – which of course, helps to reduce energy bills and support Net Zero goals. Many companies are already pursuing their own stated green goals, and more official regulations are on the horizon. Implementing intelligent control and energy-efficient technologies now will save a lot of time, money, and hassle later.
Reduce operational and repair costs
Energy-related systems are complex and the older they are, the more likely they are to break down. No business wants to be faced with huge and unexpected repair and replacement costs – especially now. However, with a Priva system the benefits are myriad: you can monitor in real-time, gain insight into the source of the problems and fix the correct fault proactively, reducing the operational risk of wrong diagnosis and further damage to the rest of your building equipment. This leads to happier occupants and lower operations expenses.
Make these factors the basis of any new investment and you will stand a particularly good chance of pleasing every department in an organization. Reducing operational expend inures an understandable reaction to testing times, but those businesses who can go ahead with carefully calibrated investments will benefit from buildings that are more ‘fit for purpose’ in every way.