How has the FM sector taken to mobile technology over the last five years?
Mobile technology in the FM sector has changed considerably over the past five years, Facility Managers need to solve issues and communicate with their teams and it is not as easy as reach them at their desks. Technicians are outside most of the time, whether floor-to-floor in a building or in another city, so they are mobile and they do need mobile solutions.
In early 2010, mobility in FM was unusual and only related to the use of common laptops, hardly connected to the internet via USB modem devices, or heavy and old PDAs, all of them very expensive.
Three years later, in 2013, the technology had advanced a lot. Many FM companies started their process of becoming mobile, acquiring advanced PDAs with RIFD, QR and barcodes, clients’ interest about ROSMIMAN’s mobility solutions increased significantly and awareness of the importance and potential of such solutions was higher.
Nowadays, mobile devices have become cheaper and a most of our clients are using tablets and Smartphones fully integrated with our IWMS system, automatic email notifications and real-time reporting functionalities. They can also use cameras, GPS and other features to take advantage of their modern devices.
Today, requests can be processed at the time when a problem is found, some of them require images, so it is possible to take a photo and scan an asset’s barcode to identify it and thus create work orders and follow up their status easily. Additionally, our mobile apps can save changes when, for example, technicians are in a basement without access to Wi-Fi or mobile networks and upload the information as soon as they get access.
How does it benefit FM providers? And in what ways has software contributed in the FM industry?
The implementation of mobile systems adapted to tablets, smartphones and mobile websites has made the job of FM providers and the entire industry smoother and, of course, more effective.
The amount of time spent in daily tasks, documenting changes and submitting requests has been clearly reduced. Time is money and this could not only improve employees’ productivity but also provide quicker responses and therefore day-to-day tasks can be more profitable.
Our mobile apps can help managers to have real information about where is their team at any time, they can collaborate between them without email and, instead, sending messages through the app, as well as share or store relevant information.
The process becomes paper-free; Facilities Managers have real-time access to their list of work orders, pending tasks, asset details, inventory, etc. They can upload updates and also, get more accurate data on the go.
Definitely, the use of cutting-edge mobility solutions makes any company more competitive, it will be able to provide a better, quicker and more effective value-added service, saving money and having a more productive team.
The market is constantly evolving and we are aware of it, that’s why we have always paid special attention to end–users to better understand their needs and never stop improving our applications to fulfil their requirements.
Is technology still seen only as a means to cuts costs, improve time scales, and instill accurate reporting for transparency?
No, technology does not only mean cut costs but also enhance communication both internally and externally between clients and providers allowing a better data–analysis in order to make better decisions, reduce implementation expenses and, finally, improving efficiency.
What are some of the things one must keep in mind while adapting mobile technology?
The first thing to consider is to analyse who will be the end-users, what type of device is best suited to their needs, which kind of service their company provides, to whom should they report, etc.
Every company has a particular way of working and we always start analysing their workflows, adapting our solution according to specific needs of each client to fit better their requirements, to make it easy to use and by preventing employees do not understand its performance and stop using it.
What do you see as the future of mobile technology in facilities management?
There is one truth about computing technologies: Everything becomes smaller and faster day by day, and now, with cloud technologies, information is accessible anytime anywhere.
Not only companies have been using these technologies, with the emergence of smart cities, citizens and ordinary people are demanding all kinds of applications to collaborate with their governments and to obtain real-time information from their cities. There is a huge potential in this field that we have seen some years ago and so we have developed a suite of apps designed to different types of users, to collect and analyse big data, to geo-locate buildings or public facilities, and to help citizens to have more friendly environments and governments.
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