Smarter facilities management: making use of existing security technology

Jan 4, 2023

Today’s facilities manager needs to be able to successfully carry out a variety of tasks to keep buildings operating smoothly and people well catered for. Security technology, used to keep premises safe and secure, has now advanced to a point where it can be of assistance to the facilities manager, providing insights based on collected data to help them operate smarter. The good news is that businesses will have such technology on-site already; namely, network-enabled surveillance cameras and access control devices. When connected as a simple IoT device to a business intelligence platform in the cloud, dedicated solutions such as VSaaS and ACaaS become powerful security and business intelligence tools that can help the facilities professional fulfil their role.

Improving safety and security

VSaaS uses today’s network cameras with onboard analytics and artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities for advanced levels of comprehensive security, protecting premises inside and out. Automatic notifications sent from a dedicated cloud platform can also be viewed by an app on a mobile device, ensuring that facilities and security teams are notified of any incident in real-time.

Cameras, while monitoring for security purposes, can also be trained to help enforce health and safety regulations, further serving to protect an organisation’s people. For example, VSaaS can be utilised to make sure that staff leave a building as instructed during a fire drill. Here, ACaaS also comes into effect, granting safe access through doorways and recording an ID card's swipe at designated assembly points to avoid the need for a manual roll-call procedure.

Optimising space in the hybrid workplace

Remote or hybrid working has added to the challenges around the use of office space. Before Covid, facilities managers could be largely certain about the number of workers that would require access at any one time, but flexible working makes this harder to predict. Video and access control can be used to gather anonymised data about staff behaviour over time, producing intelligent insights which can help to differentiate between busy and quiet periods, allowing better planning of space and resources.

This same data can be used to optimise building management processes. At a time of rising energy bills, facilities professionals are under pressure to make cost savings wherever possible. Data about not only how many staff have entered the building, but also about their movements around the site, can lead to energy savings through automation of heating and lighting based on demand. A quiet day in the office might become a time to conserve resources and thereby save money.

Automated servicing and maintenance

Facilities managers have a responsibility to introduce technology to aid business processes, and to maintain that technology. Backed by a regular rollout of software updates and firmware upgrades, VSaaS and ACaaS can be automatically maintained while still remaining operational 24/7. Benefits of remote maintenance mean that an engineer can activate updates without physically attending the site, removing the disruption associated with on-site maintenance and any potential downtime.

Connecting to the cloud unlocks the full potential of the security solutions that are already on site. For facilities managers and their teams the benefits of doing this are clear, while for potential new employees the use of cutting-edge systems and cloud infrastructure is a sign that the business is forward-thinking and embracing change. Harnessing the capabilities of cloud physical security solutions will lead to the more efficient practices, better planning, and put the FM department in a stronger position to face its challenges.

Find out more about the benefits of VSaaS and ACaaS for facilities managers:

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Facilities Management