Internet of things (IoT)

Conversational systems are built in order to converse with humans logically to assist them. The specialty of these systems includes interaction between humans and machines through written or spoken natural language. In facilities management, this technology can be used for analyzing people’s behavior, their likes and dislikes, along with addressing various specific issues within an infrastructure and conveying them to the concerned authorities. (, 2018)

Technology is affecting the life of humans directly. It is no different in the commercial sector as well. Many organizations are already deviating from the age old legacy systems to modern digital systems. The same applies to facilities management as well. The field of facilities management is improving in leaps and bounds. One trend in modern FM is the use of IoT.

Sensors in buildings are becoming cheaper, smarter, and more widely used. New connections are being forged, not just between devices in a system, but among systems in a building and buildings in a portfolio. And the unprecedented volume of data coming from buildings is being converted into useful information by sophisticated analytics. For facility managers, there’s nothing new about the idea of connecting devices to enable data sharing and control. But the Internet of Things, or IoT, changes the game in important ways.

The IoT devices remain interconnected with some vital areas of the building that leads to better utilization of resources. In terms of energy saving, the IoT devices are interconnected with self-powered meters. Smart sensors can control basic building elements like light, temperature, management of the run-time of escalators and elevators, and others, thereby reducing the energy consumption. Real-time monitoring of processes in a building can be done successfully with IoT solutions.

With all these trends come one major problem. In a business point of view, do they generate any income at all? Simply, are they worth it?

One of the many benefits of IoT and analytics in facility management is the ability to do more with less. Well, this means that the applied technology reduces energy reliance and optimizing the workforce of facility management companies. The main goals of the application of intelligent-building and IoT technology are as follows.

  • Reduction of costs.
  • Reduction of risks
  • Improvement of the occupant experience.

In the U.S. alone, the combined energy costs for nearly six million commercial buildings and industrial facilities is estimated at $400 billion. (, 2018)

The average building, moreover, wastes 30% of the energy it consumes due to built-in inefficiencies. In addition, ongoing operating costs represent 50% of a building’s total lifecycle expenses over ran estimated 40-year life span, and those costs are growing, often unpredictably. (Rajagopalan, et al., 2017)

Employee standards are changing and the roles of facilities managers are evolving too. According to an independent report by Gartner, 25% of all businesses are using a chief digital officer as an extension of traditional facilities managers and have increased the efficiency in providing the quality facilities and service to the occupants by 50%.

Optimum management of energy consumption has been a huge headache for facility managers for decades. There are a myriad of electrical appliances from computers, phones, printers, scanners to vending machines and coffee makers. Hence, it has been a very difficult process keep track of the energy consumption of each and every electrical appliance in the office premises. More scientifically, it is very hard to keep track of plug and process load (PPL) energy usage of each appliance.

But with the advent of IoT, facility managers have been provided with the opportunity of optimizing this PPL energy usage and thereby, minimize the costs incurred in facilities management. In this process, advanced power strips, load shedding devices, and occupancy sensors allow for remote and automated measurement and control. As an example, the facility manager can monitor and manage PCs remotely, setting automation protocols that change their power settings when not in use. The advanced power strips can sense when a workstation has become inactive and power down the equipment at that station, allowing the facility manager to save the energy.

Hence, it is safe to say that by accompanying IoT with the facilities management, the organizations will gain numerous advantages.



References, 2018. Top 3 Emerging Trends Impacting the Facility Management Services Market in Europe from 2017-2021: Technavio. [Online] Available at:, 2018. CBECS 2012: Building Stock Results. [Online] Available at: Middle East, 2018. AI And IoT Are The Future Of Facilities Management – Forbes Middle East. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 29 07 2018].
Rajagopalan, R., Hameed, T., Rajamani, B. & Sethuraman, B., 2017. Embracing Smarter Facilities Management, s.l.: s.n. Service Futures, 2018. 5 major factors that are driving growth in the FM industry. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 29 07 2018].

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