Guest Post by Pippa Boothman, Vice President of Marketing and Communications at Disruptive Technologies

In recent years, the rapid digitalization of buildings and facilities management has enabled the collection of large volumes of digital data for physical assets and processes. The expansion of internet-connected devices makes it possible to access, collect, and analyze this data remotely i.e., without being present on site.

The rise of the Internet of Things (IoT) has led to an increasing number of deployments in buildings that center around remote monitoring. This opens a rich set of opportunities for improving the quality, efficiency, safety, and timeliness of business processes. It also helps buildings and facilities managers in taking effective, educated, and data-driven decisions.

The remote monitoring of assets enables buildings and facilities managers to instantly assess the status of assets and processes without a need to perform field inspections with human workers in the loop. Remote monitoring also provides the means for collecting data frequently and in an automated manner.

In this article, we lay out nine benefits of IoT-enabled remote monitoring.

1. Energy Efficiency and Sustainability

Remote monitoring of spaces is key to optimizing energy consumption in real estate. Remote data collection can be used to fine-tune the operation of HVAC (Heating-Ventilation-Air Conditioning) systems towards avoiding BTU (British Thermal Unit) losses.

This results in worn-out equipment and in some cases a sudden need for replacement, as well as higher energy bills. Remote monitoring boosts the environmental performance of the building and enables facilities managers to implement effective sustainability programs. 

2. Space Allocation Management

Facilities managers can take advantage of remote occupancy monitoring to allocate shared spaces (e.g., meeting rooms) in the best possible way. You can also leverage space occupancy data to tailor your services to the needs of tenants (e.g., proper lighting and heating conditions for occupied spaces). For example, insights into how often meeting rooms are used can lead to downsizing. Or, you can visualize space occupancy data in an occupancy heatmap.

3. Increased Occupant Health and Well-being

Facilities managers can access information about the conditions of rooms and spaces in their buildings remotely. This information helps you create ideal conditions in each rented space, to maximize the comfort of your clients. Moreover, real-time insights on temperature, humidity, and other conditions of rooms and spaces enable you to boost the health and wellbeing of your clients. 

4. Sensitive Products Monitoring and Cold Storage Intelligence

Several commercial and residential tenants own or manage products sensitive to environmental conditions. Prominent examples including temperature-sensitive products (e.g., food and beverage) and humidity-sensitive products (e.g., paintings and other artworks). You can offer remote monitoring services for the condition of these products to ensure their quality and safety. This also makes you stand out from competitors.

5. Cost-Effective Condition-Based Monitoring

The remote monitoring of assets is a key prerequisite for the implementation of novel maintenance models such as condition-based maintenance and maintenance as a service. Through remote monitoring, you can analyze asset information and get maintenance recommendations without stepping foot in the building. 

In addition, the data obtained by remotely monitoring building equipment sets the foundation for effective predictive maintenance approaches. This leads to optimizing equipment utilization and minimizing equipment downtime.

6. Speed and Responsiveness

With remote monitoring, you have real-time visibility on the status of your assets and services. You can detect and respond to situations that require attention faster and apply mitigation plans in a timely manner. Faster responses lead to cost savings as they prevent the problems from escalating.

7. Reduction of Manual Labor

Remote monitoring enables remote inspections. Remote inspections reduce the need for hands-on work. In many cases, data that would be otherwise gathered manually can be monitored and analyzed off-site, which employees can use to pursue more creative work.

8. Filling the Skills Gap

Many organizations face a significant skills gap in qualified personnel for processes like inspections, maintenance, and field service. Remote monitoring reduces the number of personnel that must be deployed in physical locations. It also provides more flexibility in planning hands-on processes. 

9. Improved Performance Management Remote monitoring enables organizations to integrate information about many assets and processes, regardless of time and the location of the assets. In this way, you can gain a 360-degree view of your operations and optimize their management Thanks to remote management, you are no longer bound to a local view of your assets and processes. Rather, you can instantly consolidate information about the performance of the organization while calculating relevant KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) like Overall Equipment Efficiency (OEE) and total carbon (CO2) emissions. 

Pippa Boothman is Vice President of Marketing and Communications at Disruptive Technologies