Have you ever wanted to know how efficient your building’s systems were? Those data points that could lead to actionable business insights are hard to find using conventional methods.
However, smart building technology like building control and automation gives many organizations the knowledge they need to streamline efficiency and meet sustainability goals. In turn, building control and automation technology can lead to intelligence business practices and help you save money on a variety of things.
The value of data
With data coming from a variety of sensors and sources connected to building infrastructure, businesses have a platform to aggregate and easily digest the information. According to Terrill Laughton, vice president and general manager of energy optimization and connected equipment at Johnson Controls, this gives facility owners and managers the ability to turn insights into action.
Imagine knowing the exact time when certain employees are using certain rooms, or when energy use is at its peak. That information can be used to help scale down energy use during those off-peak hours.
Sensors can tell when a room is being occupied, and the space can be heated or cooled accordingly.
Mission critical building infrastructure systems can be monitored and better controlled to maximize efficiency and quickly diagnose problems before it impacts your business.
“The value of having information that is based on data allows professionals to make the most informed decisions for their enterprise, which not only helps them run their facilities on a day to day basis, but also allows them to make long term strategic decisions with a much higher degree of confidence,” Laughton says.
Smart buildings platforms can now help key building stakeholders take a systematic, data-driven approach in proactively managing their buildings, or even entire portfolio of real estate properties.
“Having connected, sustainable and more efficient buildings drives a much more set of diverse use cases and value creation potential,” Laughton says.
A “smarter building” that’s connected to the network has a variety of use cases, all of which can help your organization save money and cut unnecessary costs, according to the smart building expert:
- Improved energy performance
- Better managed maintenance costs
- Insights into space utilization
- Increased productivity of occupants
“With this understanding comes the capability to monitor the financial health of a facility and discover new ways to manage the bottom line,” Laughton says.
When buildings come alive
When buildings and facilities are feeding data into the network, end users can use it to assess the needs of its occupants and prioritize their time and resources spent on critical areas.
For example, if data reveals that energy usage is very high in a building or specific part of a building, organizations can investigate to see if there are steps they can take to help eliminate some of those costs.
These building control and automation systems also allow organizations to identify and diagnose inefficiencies and equipment malfunctions more easily, saving their company more time and money.
According to Laughton, chiller malfunctions can be hard to identify, and facility managers typically aren’t alerted until it’s too late. That means costly downtime and rushed repairs.
“But when a building’s central plant is monitored and managed by a smart system, facility managers can be instantly alerted to a potential issue before it occurs, allowing them to plan repairs accordingly,” Laughton says.