7 Innovative Ways Organisations are Using Smart Buildings to Save Money

4 min read
Mar 26, 2019

The future of commercial real estate (CRE) is looking smart. With increased government pressure on businesses to incorporate sustainable processes into their organisations, as well as mounting social demand for better residential and work environments, it makes sense to start revolutionising your property and preparing your buildings for greater efficiency.

Integrating technology in to your commercial buildings should be viewed as an investment; the returns and benefits from optimising workspaces and leveraging the data collected by smart devices will ultimately pay for itself. This blog will show you how organisations are using Internet of Things (IoT) technologies to save money, boost their public profile through green initiatives and even find new streams of revenue via smart buildings.

1. Minimise energy costs

CRE is all about location. Your business needs a convenient site for your customers, employees and suppliers. This necessity for a central location might mean that you operate from a building which may not have been designed with modern energy efficiency in mind.

An IoT True Occupancy system can help you to identify when a zone is being occupied and how it’s being used. An cloud based platform collects this data and can be set up to communicate with building systems which will regulate the facilities in that area, ensuring energy is not being wasted.

By collecting data about how the occupants in your building interact with certain facilities, machines and spaces, you can address issues quickly and formulate more cost-effective alternatives. So, you can still benefit from your retro building’s central location and save money by revising how energy and lighting are used while also leveraging the data your people counter collects to improve functionality.

2. Increase employee productivity

One of the most significant expenses for employers is lack of productivity, this may have a knock-on effect across other areas of your business and snowball into a broader public relations issue. Many companies do not recognise the potential of talented staff members who are stifled due to stress-inducing environments.

Simple adjustments in temperature, lighting and layout of your office space could have a positive influence on how your employees feel and perform. By studying the movement patterns within your building, you will be able to devise a strategy for streamlining communication and interaction between employees and visitors, as well as control the internal environment to suit the needs of the occupants.

When people are comfortable and adequately equipped to perform their tasks functionally and collaboratively with other colleagues, you will begin to see improvement in productivity.

3. Reduce costs of absenteeism and improve staff wellbeing

A happy work environment reduces stress – a contributing factor to many illnesses. Your efficient, eco-friendly workspace will ensure that staff are working under the best suitable conditions and therefore benefiting from a better mindset towards the tasks they are required to carry out.

Employers have a duty to offer a safe and healthy environment for employees, this can be achieved through preventing hazards and ensuring workstations comply with DSE regulations.

4. Discover new sources of revenue

Many organisations invest in large commercial sites that are not always used to their full potential. This could be due to your business activities only concentrating around particular hubs within the premises or certain spaces being deemed unsuitable or uncomfortable by staff.

A True Occupancy solution will be able to generate a clear picture of infrequently used areas that could either be redesigned for greater utility or create a new stream of revenue for your businesses by renting these facilities out to other companies. Examples of this are pop-up shop floor space, storage or hot desk office facilities.

Information on how occupants or shoppers move within your building can help you to form agreements with suppliers who wish to benefit from optimal product placement. As you will be able to offer real-time data and statistics on the effectiveness of the promotion, you can charge for the prime location you are supplying.

5. Improved safety and security

The advantage of understanding occupancy in your building is also knowing who shouldn’t be on your property or in sensitive areas. Advanced people counters like the Irisys Vector 4D allow you to identify staff members and distinguish between visitors or unwelcome intruders. Insight into who is in your building, and when, enhances safety.

6. Decrease the frequency of large scale repair work

Depending on the size of your estate, you are likely to accumulate considerable maintenance costs. While regular upkeep of your facilities is crucial, your budget may be getting hit by big, yet avoidable, repair jobs too often.

By utilising a True Occupancy system to understand how much an area is used, for example, a lift or escalator, predictive maintenance can be carried out before a breakdown even occurs.

This saves not only the expense of a costly repair but also prevents the disruption that a breakdown would have caused for building occupants.

7. Better customer and tenant experience boosts income

A better experience for your building's occupants can create many positive outcomes. An efficient, sustainable building is more likely to serve the needs of everyone who interacts with your business, therefore improving conditions for trade and staff productivity.

Globally, organisations are harnessing the power of smart buildings. Deloitte identifies the considerable potential of IoT technologies in CRE sensor deployment by stating that "the sector is likely to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 78.8% between 2015-2020".

A True Occupancy system can make your building smart and communicate with your building systems to enhance and improve operations that save you money by closing the feedback loop between occupants and management.

True Occupancy is an occupancy analytics solution by Irisys - an industry leader in anonymous people counting technologies and queue management systems. If you’re ready to capitalise on the data that your CRE property could offer, get in touch to discuss how our technology could fit into your organisation.

Request a demo or speak to one of our experts today.

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