There is no doubt that technology is ever-growing in the workforce, and this rings true for facility managers. With Gen-Z tripling in the workforce by the end of the decade and many FMs reaching retirement age, the importance of tech is at an all-time high. So, what technology should next-gen FMs be ready to use when entering the workforce? Today, our enterprise software experts at SCLogic discuss technology trends, how the incoming workforce can minimize the technology gap, and what programs and platforms will be most helpful for facilities’ success.
The Current State of FM Technology
Before we dive into the tools of the future workforce, we must get an overview of what the FM tech market looks like today and is set to look like in the coming years. According to a study done by Service Works Global earlier this year, some significant trends exist to monitor, including space management, energy management, sustainability, integrations, and visualization. Surprisingly, over 50% of facilities still use spreadsheets, schedules, and paper to monitor maintenance. Unfortunately, this is often due to a technology adoption gap, as around 80% of all CMMS users are not using all the functions offered by their software.
For the future of FM, we know that technology and sustainability are at the forefront of facility strategy. Teams should focus on implementing a digital workplace today so that next-gen FMs can hit the ground running. For 2022 and beyond, “green buildings” and a shift in real estate will be prominent in the FM market, the employee experience will be more critical than ever, and data analytics will continue to reign supreme. In the post-COVID era, employees have created a more robust work-life balance and expect their employers to follow suit. This means creating and fostering an in-office environment that incorporates biophilic design and a company culture that promotes sustainability daily. With this technology increase, there will be countless opportunities to gather company and customer data to use as strategic tools for long-term growth.
Enterprise Asset Management Software
First and foremost, EAM, or enterprise asset management software, will be essential for facility growth. EAM is a combination of software and services used to maintain and control operational assets and equipment. Generally, EAM involves asset management, maintenance, planning and scheduling, supply chain management, and environmental, health and safety (EHS) initiatives. Compared to a CMMS, EAMs take a holistic approach to complete asset lifecycle management, rather than a CMMS generally used to manage maintenance.
So, why is EAM important for next-gen FMs? To create a culture of preventative maintenance. Preventative maintenance is vital in helping facilities save money, optimize their facility, and prevent unplanned maintenance costs. Additionally, EAMs are essential for monitoring asset access, transfer, and ownership of extensive facilities. Instead of tracking down assets and equipment or who has access to organizational assets, EAMs create a streamlined process for your entire enterprise, giving next-gen FMs the resources they need to maximize profit, reduce reactive maintenance costs, and more.
Space Planning Tools for the Hybrid Workforce
There is no doubt that the hybrid workforce is here to stay, but what does that mean for offices? No, traditional office spaces are not going away, but many businesses are pivoting to adjust to the needs of the incoming workforce. This means optimizing space management, designing spaces based on collaboration and individualized communication tools, and ensuring proper technology and assets are available to your employees. If you’re wondering if space management software is a worthwhile investment, it is. According to Gensler’s U.S. Workplace survey, innovative companies are five times more likely to have workplaces that prioritize group and individual spaces. A study by Hassell and Empirica Research shows that 37% of job candidates will accept a job with a lower salary if the company offers appealing culture, workplace facilities, and technology.
At SCLogic, we’ve heard the pain points of our enterprise customers, which is why we created our Workplace Services Workgroup to target space planning requests and improvements specifically. With workflows that cater to hot-desking trends and integrations with renowned workplace management companies such as OfficeSpace, we are ready to help your enterprise facility move into the future. We’ve also prioritized providing continuous training and unparalleled customer service post-installation, so next-gen FMs can feel confident learning our software.
IoT Sensors & Smart Building Technology
IoT, or the internet of things, is a broad term. In short, IoT describes the “network of physical objects – things – embedded with sensors, software, and other technologies for the purpose of connecting and exchanging data with other devices and systems over the internet,” according to Oracle. IoT and smart building technologies are imperative for creating an efficient facility, and next-gen FMs should come prepared with knowledge of this industry to stay ahead of the competition. For facility managers, IoT sensors can be used for maintenance, communication, managing resources, and more.
IoT sensors and smart building technologies help facility managers optimize your facility through environmental and occupancy factors. This can include smart building elements such as intelligent lighting, HVAC, and temperature controls. This can also include intelligent space management tools that monitor occupancy and harness this data in a consolidated platform. As a result, your team can analyze this data and discover patterns or gaps to help you create an optimized, cost-effective facility.
Building Information Modeling (BIM) for a Sustainable Future
In recent years, facilities management has been looked at from a more holistic approach, considering the needs of the building, tenants, and impact on the community from the inception of the construction process. This is where BIM, or building information modeling, comes in. Currently, the global BIM industry is valued at $2.3 billion and is anticipated to reach a value of $15.5 billion by 2031, that’s more than an 18% CAGR over the next decade. For next-gen FMs, gaining knowledge and experience in the BIM market in the coming years is priceless.
So, what does BIM technology entail? The process of BIM consists of planning, designing, building, and operating a facility and looks at how each step of the process will subsequently affect the others, considering variables such as cost, efficiency, community effectiveness, and sustainability. There are mandates across the globe for BIM, allowing construction, facility, and operations teams to work closely and collaborate on the most efficient process to create additional infrastructure. For next-gen FMs, utilizing BIM software will place you significantly ahead of the curve and provide the building blocks for further maintenance and construction technology that will be adopted in the near future.
Begin Your Career in FM with a Technology-Forward Business
In the current state of the FM market, the age gap plays a significant role in implementing new technology. With many facilities managers nearing retirement age and programs constantly emerging in the FM field for the incoming workforce, it’s crucial to begin your career with technology at the forefront. There is no doubt that automation, AI, and machine learning will be an integral part of any FM position, and investing in knowledge for an innovative future is vital. At SCLogic, we’ve focused on our customers’ unique pain points and have created a modern solution that prioritizes collaboration and integrations as a result.