Oct 1, 2020 | Trends, Technology

Are You Getting the Most Out of Your Energy and Facility Management Software?

Commercial building managers rely on their Energy and Facility Management Software (EFMS) to keep ahead of facility needs. Without the support of the data gathered by automated building systems, building managers would be at a disadvantage when making strategic decisions. As buildings become more automated, the capability of management applications to improve managerial decision-making increases. Here are five ways the EFMS can be a key component in strategic planning for stakeholders.

Energy and Facility Management Software Applications

  1. Energy consumption information. EFMS will track and display real-time and historical energy usage data and will show when and where energy is used. Using energy modeling algorithms, inefficient and malfunctioning equipment can be identified. Alerts can be sent when energy consumption exceeds model estimates and thresholds set during strategic planning. Decision makers can use this current information to assess equipment maintenance and replacement needs before revenue loss increases.
  2. System information. EFMS controls and monitors mechanical and electrical system settings and sensor readings. Systems monitored can include ventilation, lighting, power, fire protection and security. Managers can evaluate settings and sensor data to ensure occupant comfort and maximum system performance.
  3. Occupancy/Use Information. Building usage based on space size and capacity can be shown. With pandemic mandates, this type of information is critical to operating within restrictions and keeping occupants safe. EFMS platforms can record and report on occupied space, maintenance and cleaning logs, and comfort levels.
  4. Fault Detection and Diagnosis. EFMS performs an analysis of data to identify operational performance of the building and its systems to root out inefficiencies and faulty equipment. Automatic alerts can be programmed to notify managers when operating conditions or data fall outside of parameters designated as acceptable. EFMS will keep managers ahead of rising energy costs and equipment maintenance.
  5. Automated Continuous Commissioning (ACCx). EFMS “learns” how the building works with historical data, observes correlations between data points, and then using selected algorithms, identifies anomalies. EFMS allows for remote monitoring where re-commissioning and retro-commissioning may be prohibitive due to cost or inability to be in-person at the facility. Over time, equipment performance and efficiency naturally deteriorate and ACCx decreases commissioning and energy performance costs by estimating acceptable decreases and alerting managers when results do not match expectations.

Components of EFMS

EFMS usually consists of multiple modules including the dashboard, alarming, work order, data sources and reporting modules. The dashboard module will present energy information, system information and billing information in one interface. The alarm module will create and manage notification and can be customized for individual building requirements. The work order module will manage the actions of facility personnel in relation to fault detection and evaluation. The data source module manages data from sensors, utility and other metering devices, and building automation devices. And the reporting module will aggregate all this information into meaningful reports.

Building Managers and EFMS

To fully integrate and make the most of the entire building, its systems, and usage, managers need to take the time to learn how to get the most out of their EFMS. Partners, like Albireo Energy, work with the building team to connect building systems, identify and eliminate inefficiencies, and provide education and assistance in maximizing the benefits of your EFMS.

Cost and consumption analysis can be used to prioritize initiatives to improve efficiency and performance. EFMS can provide information that building managers will find immensely helpful in complying with safety protocol and maintaining occupant comfort resulting from pandemic mandates. Platforms can be accessed through mobile devices allowing real-time data to be available instantly when conditions change. Reports on consumption or usage can be used to engage with building occupants to increase participation in conservation and compliance efforts.

A successful strategic plan relies on comprehensive use of Energy and Facility Management Software. Albireo is standing by to help you get the most out of your system.

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