Six tech levers to fix FM’s achilles heel

At the very core of the FM practise lies its achilles heel - an outdated and inflexible CaFM / CMMS system hindering business growth. Let’s look at the several roadblocks that come in the way of the smooth expansion of FM operations, and explore effective technology-led strategies to navigate them.

The Integrated FM practice continues to evolve in a rapidly changing real estate landscape. In this context, scaling service lines quickly and providing agile responses to fast-changing client demands have become critical for FM service providers to win in a highly competitive market.

In a race to differentiate, FMs are turning to technology to optimize asset management, workflow automation, auditing and reporting, energy management, and many other O&M functions.

However, at the very core of the FM practise lies its achilles heel - an outdated and inflexible CaFM/CMMS system hindering business growth. This in turn results in several roadblocks that come in the way of the optimal use of technology and the smooth expansion of FM operations across client portfolios. Let's closely examine these roadblocks and explore effective strategies to navigate them.

  1. Outdated user interface and sub-optimal user experience: FM service providers face challenges scaling their service offerings when using outdated software with complex user interfaces and sub-optimal user experiences. This makes it difficult for users to navigate the system, access relevant information, and make informed decisions efficiently.
  2. Lack of integration and accessibility for all stakeholders: FM software without proper integration capabilities hinders scalability by limiting collaboration among different stakeholders. Field service teams, operations, maintenance, and other involved parties may face difficulties accessing real-time data and communicating effectively, leading to operational inefficiencies.
  3. Costly upgrades and customization woes: High total cost of ownership for FM software can deter scalability. Organizations might find themselves incurring substantial expenditures for software upgrades and custom coding to accommodate novel use cases, which invariably impacts their growth.
  4. Limitations in business process creation and management: Inflexible FM software can hamper scaling efforts as organizations need the ability to create and manage business processes effectively. Without flexible workflow automation and business process management capabilities, adapting to evolving operational needs becomes challenging.
  5. Complex implementation and long deployment cycles: On-prem complex software platforms can result in prolonged implementation cycles and require significant resources. This not only delays scalability but also adds to the risk of failed deployments, negatively affecting FM service expansion plans.
  6. Lack of flexibility and adaptability to changing requirements: Rigid software architecture and limited scalability can impede organizations from expanding their FM services across different buildings or portfolios. Businesses need software solutions that can easily adapt to changing requirements and grow as their FM operations expand.

FM service providers can navigate these challenges with ease by adopting purpose-built  technologies that will intuitively solve for their exact needs and help them become strategic partners to their customers. Here are some criteria to consider while choosing the technology solution to run your O&M:

  1. Simple, intuitive, and user-friendly interfaces: Choose modern FM software with intuitive and user-friendly interfaces. Streamline workflows and provide customizable dashboards to ensure seamless navigation, making it easier for all stakeholders across teams to access information and make informed decisions efficiently.
  2. Seamless integration and collaboration: Opt for a comprehensive FM software solution that integrates with existing core technology systems. This enables smooth collaboration among stakeholders, allowing real-time data access and effective communication between different teams and departments.
  3. Cost-effective scalability: Select FM software that provides regular updates without additional fees and reduces the need for custom coding for new use cases. The system must allow you to add a custom field whenever you like, no need to request your IT provider to implement it and wait for 6-12 months without guarantees. This helps minimize the total cost of ownership, making scalability more affordable.
  4. Automated workflows: Automated workflows drive efficiency, minimize errors, and accelerate processes, fostering collaboration, ensuring compliance, and enabling seamless scalability. These outcomes enhance employee experience, elevate customer satisfaction, and deliver cost savings, collectively positioning automated workflows as a powerful catalyst for organizational agility and competitiveness.
  5. Streamlined implementation: Choose a software solution that emphasizes ease of implementation, offers comprehensive training, and provides dedicated support during and after deployment. A smooth implementation process reduces the time and resources required to scale FM services.
  6. Scalable and adaptable architecture: The platform approach is a game-changer for scaling FM services by breaking down data silos, integrating diverse technologies, and providing a scalable, interoperable, and secure solution with advanced analytics, overcoming key roadblocks in traditional FM systems

Scaling your FM services requires overcoming several tech roadblocks that may hinder growth and efficiency. By addressing the challenges outlined above and choosing a modern and comprehensive FM software solution, you can successfully navigate these roadblocks, propel your FM services to new heights and stay ahead in today's competitive landscape.