Published: Jul 22 2017

How Intelligent Software helps Higher Education in COVID times

Disruption in Facilities Management

Priorities for Higher Education in maintenance and capital spending before COVID-19 included: 

  • Health and safety, e.g. ensuring buildings were habitable 
  • Cost/affordability, minimal budget to ensure buildings were in working order 
  • State of repair/need, e.g. cosmetics of the building are important to encourage enrollment 

In a COVID-19 world, many of these priorities stand, albeit with a slightly different lens.

Starting with Health and Safety 

It is no longer enough that buildings are simply habitable, now social distancing in classrooms, halls and study facilities needs to be a high priority. Staggered class schedules so that not all students arrive at the same time and allowing students to book study rooms or music practice is another consideration. Investing in a room booking and class scheduling software system, such as Accruent's EMS solution would provide piece of mind. Read about the blog on social distancing on campus here. 

Other aspects of health and safety to consider is adequate ventilation, thermal imaging of student and staff temperatures and cleanliness of facilities. Integrating room booking tools with cleaning schedules, HVAC systems and temperature gauges would help improve virus control. Consider an IoT solution such as Accruent's vx Observe, that not only integrates with room scheduling, but also manages the cost savings required to keep buildings in working order. Learn about IoT remote monitoring here.

Cost/Affordability to Ensure Buildings are in Working Order

Lighting, energy, HVAC, elevators along with many other devices could be remotely monitored to provide cost savings across your campus. Only switching them on when occupied, real time dashboard visibility, alarm notification before critical failure and quicker response times to reduce downtime on equipment are all part of the IoT package.

Other important considerations to ensure buildings are and remain in working order are to address the maintenance backlog and extending the lifetime of your assets. These become more of a priority to ensure compliancy with health and safety regulations and reduce budget spent on equipment replacement when it could be avoided.

By leveraging maintenance data at the asset level, you are empowered to better manage work orders and contractors, streamline the reconciliation process, improve compliance and make strategic decisions for your facility portfolio. 

When a facility asset management software tool such as vx Maintain is integrated with vx Observe, it becomes a powerful cost saving tool. 

Now that your asset and facility performance optimization plans for managing the full workflow related to reactive and planned preventive maintenance activities have been discussed, we need to consider the state of repairs of your assets and building.

State of Repair/Need of Buildings and Assets on Campus

In line with prioritizing health and safety, ensuring buildings are in working order, many education facilities have spent money on key factors such as: replacing pipes, radiators, heating system, boilers, upgraded fire system, new roof/re-roofing, window replacement, refurbishment of toilets, building extensions, increasing capacity of facilities, etc. 

 Due to minimal budgets, many have conducted surveys on their physical assets on their own accord. Due to COVID-19 and changing priorities, using a mobile software module to survey, collect and report on facilities and asset condition data, such as Kykloud would help define budgets for maintenance and capital projects, prioritize initiatives and manage these projects in a comprehensive manner and ultimately reduce cost. 

In summary: Learn how Accruent Helps with Intelligent Software for Higher Education in COVID-19 Times:

  1. Health & Safety
    • EMS: Workplace Resource & Space Scheduling 
    • IoT vx Observe: Remote Assets Monitoring & Control 
  2. Cost/Affordability to ensure buildings are in working order
  3. State of repair/need of buildings and assets on campus
    • Kykloud: Mobile Surveying and Inspections

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