Technology in the new normal has transformed how building owners and facility managers navigate building management. A recent report on Smart Building Management indicates that the smart building market is poised to grow at a CAGR of 19.88% to reach USD 5.89 billion in 2027. The gradual yet consistent shift towards smart building strategies is evident as Building Management Systems become increasingly IoT enabled and data driven, thereby equipping facility managers with actionable information to enhance their commercial facilities by streamlining day to day operations.
The increasing integration of IoT with smart buildings is resulting in the evolution of the Building Management Systems and is key to creating new opportunities for reducing processes and increasing effectiveness. There are several growing trends that are emerging and will likely continue to spread throughout the coming years as building management continues to mature. Here’s an overview of some of the trends that are expected to dominate the Smart Building Management industry:
- IoT integration and need for Actionable analytics in BMS: As per a Gartner report, 2023 will see more than 43 billion devices connected to the internet. These will not only generate and share data, but also help us in making informed decisions through extensive use of data. Savvy facility managers that enhanced their digital capabilities over the recent years will be well equipped to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of their facility management by making decisions based on data. The Internet of Things (IoT) and smart technologies will allow businesses to make better decisions about how to run their facilities. This information can help improve everything from maintenance schedules to how much energy is used. IoT coupled with actionable intelligence can provide facility managers with powerful opportunities and benefits ranging from environmental efficiency to cost management.
- Workplace experience will drive BMS: As organisations move towards hybrid workplace models, owners and employees today expect a building to offer more than just comfort; they anticipate a more involved and engaging environment that promotes their physical and mental well-being alongside having a positive effect on overall productivity. Overall, BMS have to provide organisations with the ability to control their own environments without adding to their current workloads.
- The rise of the Digital Twin: The massive data produced by sophisticated building systems can be stored, organised, and accessed using its digital twin, a web-based representation of a physical building. The increased use of IoT sensors will fuel the growth of digital twins across Building Management Systems which can significantly benefit building owners, managers, and tenants by enabling other applications to deliver these improvements and cost savings as well. Facility managers will be able to get a better understanding of how changing particular variables is likely to affect energy results.
- Sustainable Infrastructure, a deciding factor for building owners: Building managers are investing in tools to assess energy needs, spot inefficiencies, and highlight opportunities to improve operations as people become more aware of the energy waste that can arise from improper commissioning of a building’s energy system. As businesses prioritise converting to green buildings in order to lower carbon emissions, sustainability measures are becoming a mandate in the majority of large structures. In the coming years, businesses will become greener and more environmentally friendly as sustainable business practises gain popularity.
- Data will rule: Even before the pandemic came into the picture, technologies for making buildings smarter existed. Today, building owners have easy access to technology that can transform all data collected into meaningful findings. These technologies will gain more traction in the future as building owners will employ these insights to guide their actions toward more efficient, data-driven use of energy, maintenance, and other operational resources. New occupancy and air quality sensors will gather more information than ever before. The effective analysis and deployment of this data will significantly help in making buildings smarter, healthier, and more environmentally friendly.
- Enabling remote operations through Centralized Management: Service providers and facility teams can monitor and occasionally troubleshoot systems without physically being close to equipment thanks to the Internet of Things and smart building trends. With the growth of the IoT, there is a greater need for service providers to work closely to ensure secure network connectivity and user authentication mechanisms that ensure regulated, safe connectivity to integrated building systems. This trend will ease and simplify day-to-day operations and will reduce manual settings inside the building premise.
- Machine learning and artificial intelligence: These will serve as critical tools in moving towards predictive building management, which will enable repairs and updates to happen well in advance. Machine learning and artificial intelligence will also be leveraged to suggest important upgrades, such as installing an additional elevator based on data about employee footfall.
When implemented carefully, these trends have the potential to revolutionise building management and deliver excellent returns on investment. With a focus on rebuilding infrastructure, making buildings more environmentally friendly, and smarter, building management companies that adapt to the changing technological landscape of the industry will see more opportunities in the year to come.
(The author is Mr. Nishant Nishoo, Director of Sales- India, 75F and the views expressed in this article are his own)