02/08/2002

Predictability Can Be a Virtue

Automated Space Planning Adds Value to Your Organization

 

Emergency Preparedness

The value of accurate, readily accessible space planning data is invaluable in times of emergency. When thousands of employees need to be evacuated and relocated immediately, an automated planning system can help ensure a swift return to business. Vacancies can be identified within an organization where staff members can be sent for interim periods of time. Reports that include detailed information on voice and data network configurations ensure that displaced workers are outfitted with equipment appropriate to their job functions.


Related Companies

ARCHIBUS Inc

By Jim Goodfield

Improvisation may have yielded phenomenal results for jazz legend Miles Davis, but when it comes to keeping an organization running smoothly, planning is essential. In an economy marked by rapid growth and consolidation phases, facilities managers can take advantage of automated space planning tools that will help maximize their organization’s current resources and strategically anticipate future needs.

Over the years, automation has replaced the time-consuming task of manually tracking space usage and needs. In some organizations, the only way to keep track of space usage was by physically walking through the buildings and recording, with colored pencils, how space was being used. Unfortunately, this laborious method was inefficient at keeping up with churn (including employee or department moves), building renovations, and more.

Since inaccurate or outdated data can render even the best plans useless, an effective automated space planning system tracks changes as they occur. For example, changes to CAD drawings are coordinated with their associated facilities data. Planners update records online, or better yet, they instruct individual departments to update their own records in one central database. Organizations that have adopted the latter method have saved thousands of dollars a year in funds that would otherwise go to a heavily-staffed – and overburdened – planning department.

Using this data, space planners can anticipate their clients’ needs. Vacancies are quickly identified to accommodate new hires; telecommunication and furniture tracking tools ensure that employees moving into a new area will have all the equipment they need to start being productive right away.

A nimble space planning system also helps optimize the efficient use of space. Users can create multiple “what-if” scenarios to compare space usage options and determine the most cost-effective solution. Planners can allocate space based on objective criteria, such as the type of personnel and activities that an area can accommodate and natural work group affinities (i.e., sales and marketing departments should be in close proximity to one another), rather than giving into the person who lobbies hardest for a corner office. Staff can also visualize how space is used according to department, floor, etc., and create concise, yet descriptive reports that summarize these statistics.

Strategic space planning is an essential cost-cutting tool, too. Charging departments for the space they use is easy when all the data needed to prepare the bills can be extracted from a database – even if a department uses a room only once a week. And accurate data can turn red ink into black for organizations that rely on government funding or reimbursement. Easy access to accurate square footage and usage data makes it simple to satisfy government reporting requirements. The difference between estimated and actual space usage information can translate into recovery of thousands (or even millions) of dollars.

Clearly, predictability is a good thing when it comes to space planning. The right automation tools can complement your planning expertise and boost an organization’s overall performance.

Jim Goodfield is vice president of Business Development at Boston-based ARCHIBUS Inc. Leigh Calabrese Eck helped contribute to this article.

 


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Wood construction is both cost and energy efficient. Check out Morton Buildings and our designBUILD team online today to discover all the benefits of post-frame construction.


When choosing a metal-clad building for your next construction project, consider Morton Buildings, Inc., and their designBUILD team, we’ll make your dream a reality.

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Our mission is to help our customers manage their buildings' energy costs, improve reliability, and enhance performance while having a positive impact on the environment.
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Add highly responsive multi-zone comfort to any building project, in any climate. Our CITY MULTI H2i R2- and Y-Series VRF systems give you flexibility to fit the needs of any building. Enjoy 100% heating capacity at 0°F outdoor ambient, and 85% heating capacity at -13°F outdoor ambient.  For more information, log on to www.mitsubishipro.com


Visit our website today to learn about the design flexibility of a Morton building and the endless possibilities of partnering with our designBUILD team.


Wood construction is both cost and energy efficient. Check out Morton Buildings and our designBUILD team online today to discover all the benefits of post-frame construction.


When choosing a metal-clad building for your next construction project, consider Morton Buildings, Inc., and their designBUILD team, we’ll make your dream a reality.

We Can Help You Reduce Energy by 30%

Our mission is to help our customers manage their buildings' energy costs, improve reliability, and enhance performance while having a positive impact on the environment.
CLICK HERE to find out how.

Add highly responsive multi-zone comfort to any building project, in any climate. Our CITY MULTI H2i R2- and Y-Series VRF systems give you flexibility to fit the needs of any building. Enjoy 100% heating capacity at 0°F outdoor ambient, and 85% heating capacity at -13°F outdoor ambient.  For more information, log on to www.mitsubishipro.com

 
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