Archive for August, 2011

Furniture and equipment (F&E) systems store electronic furniture symbol libraries

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Facility managers optimize the data they gather by integrating the information systems that manage it.

 

Furniture and equipment (F&E) systems store electronic furniture symbol libraries with attributes such as size, finish, cost, and item number that enable fms to select and place symbols on plans, generate an inventory take off, and even purchase orders.

If the F&E system is tied to an inventory/asset management system, the fm can determine whether the warehouse currently stocks all the components needed for an upcoming project, for example. Once furniture is installed, it may need to be tracked. Tracking can be useful when developing inventory lists for movers or designers or when determining what is missing from one year to the next. A bar code or some other identifier with a unique code is often attached to each piece of furniture (or equipment).

Using bar codes can improve efficiency by tracking pieces or even parts of equipment. This practice also provides a maintenance record history if a date attribute is attached to each asset and the records are tracked and sorted in a database.

Reprint from June 2011 issue of Today’s Facility Manager.

Centennial Associates, Inc. provides support for our customers with software, equipment and inventory specialists to implement inventory/asset and maintenance management systems.

Call 585-671-0544 to discuss or for quote.

 

 

 

The most effective way to keep a database up to date is simply through regular, routine management.

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Facility managers optimize the data they gather by integrating the information systems that manage it.

 

The most effective way to keep a database up to date is simply through regular, routine management. Database maintenance must be part of someone’s job description and regular duties. It should be included in standard operating procedures. Enough time must be allocated to edit existing data and add new data every time a project is completed, a milestone is reached, or a batch of service calls has been completed.

It is important to remember that in performing their work many service providers and consultants develop valuable data (reports, analyses, drawings—information about a facility’s inventory) and then transmit it to fms as a report, drawing, or presentation. Therefore, it is important to determine from the outset who owns the actual data produced and who has rights to possess, use, or alter it. This question can become thorny when it involves such items as drawings, where an issue like professional liability must be considered. Fms should identify and resolve these issues before work begins.

Facility data is a valuable resource for which an fm is both custodian and guardian. It is important to maintain, revise, and use data effectively so that its value is conveyed to staff, customers, and upper management. Each group places different values, demands, and expectations on data, so fms should carefully choose management tools that enable them to enter, access, manipulate, and retrieve data; develop information; and put that information into the context of experience to enhance knowledge and ability to act.

Reprint from June 2011 issue of Today’s Facility Manager.

Centennial Associates, Inc. provides support for our customers with software, equipment and inventory specialists to implement inventory/asset and maintenance management systems.

Call 585-671-0544 to discuss or for quote.

 

 

Building operations and maintenance management systems

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Facility managers optimize the data they gather by integrating the information systems that manage it.

 

Building operations and maintenance management systems monitor and report problems by location as well as track and regulate the operation of building mechanical equipment according to predetermined criteria. This type of system can also help establish and track work orders for corrective and preventive maintenance for the equipment, the facilities, and the architectural elements within buildings. Custodial and grounds maintenance work is also included.

Maintenance systems focus on repetitive tasks such as replacing filters on a regular basis. These systems are designed to track items such as:

  • condition of equipment;
  • cycles for repetitive work (daily or weekly);
  • the number and types of equipment and how they are scheduled for maintenance;
  • staff, including scheduling and skills;
  • reports; and
  • spare and replacement parts, including what parts must accompany routine maintenance tasks.

Building operations maintenance management systems are generally time intensive to set up. Therefore, many departments subcontract the initial input, then run the system themselves; others subcontract the entire process, performing only the maintenance tasks.

Reprint from June 2011 issue of Today’s Facility Manager.

Centennial Associates, Inc. provides support for our customers with software, equipment and inventory specialists to implement inventory/asset and maintenance management systems.

Call 585-671-0544 to discuss or for quote.

 

 

Data collected and data stored lose value if its not also maintained

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Facility managers optimize the data they gather by integrating the information systems that manage it.

 

Data collected and data stored lose value if its not also maintained. Obviously, fms want to protect the cost (in terms of both time and money) they have invested in gathering or developing data and in loading it into an automated system or storing it in a vault, as well as the cost of the equipment itself. Beyond these measurable costs, all this information has enormous strategic value—both in its use and in its potential damage if it is lost.

The biggest danger is not sabotage or loss, however; it is obsolescence. Data and information are highly dynamic and require active maintenance. Gathering and updating information has become a continuous process. Ignoring or postponing this work can silently undermine the validity of a facility’s database and render parts of it useless or irrelevant. What use is information on codes, products, environmental liability, technologies, law and regulatory changes, and other matters if it is out of date or inaccurate?

Fms must recognize this fact when first developing a plan to manage their data and information. The cost of data maintenance must become part of ongoing operating expenses and an integral part of budgeting.

Reprint from June 2011 issue of Today’s Facility Manager.

Centennial Associates, Inc. provides support for our customers with software, equipment and inventory specialists to implement inventory/asset and maintenance management systems.

Call 585-671-0544 to discuss or for quote.

 

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