The 3 indicators to successfully own or occupy facilities

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August 9, 2018 | Eddy Tabet

The 3 indicators needed to successfully own or occupy facilities:

In real estate it is all about: location, location, location.  If you are on the owner, occupier, or management side, once a facility is in your portfolio the 3 indicators become: location, condition, and resources.

Knowledge of the location:

Whether you are responsible for a single facility locally or a network of facilities nationally or worldwide, real-time access to structured information about your facilities is critical.

Knowledge about the location would determine which building, safety, and environmental regulations the facility is subject to.  Location would also determine presence or absence of your preferred service vendors and equipment suppliers. And you would need knowledge about the neighborhood, surroundings, and climate.

Knowledge of the condition:

Knowledge of a facility condition is made possible by capturing and recording the use patterns, activities, and events. These range from inspections and audits to failures, maintenance and repairs. The more documents are collected and readily available the better the facility condition is defined.

Knowledge of the condition helps you differentiate efficient and compliant facilities from the ones that need attention.  It helps you define rules or thresholds to enable automatic initiation of actions or notifications that support predictive or preventive condition-based maintenance, repair, decommissioning, compliance, or change in pattern.  And it helps you attend to, or anticipate, service agreement renewals, or warranty terms and expirations, etc.

Knowledge of the resources:

Operational performance depends on balancing resource utilization and rapidly deploying resources where needed to maximize facility performance and value.  Resources are not limited to maintenance and engineering services, they include equipment, and professional skills such as management, contracting, HR, insurance, finance, and legal.

Knowledge of resources helps you determine the level of expertise and capabilities available at each facility.  This knowledge determines if certain tasks can be handled internally, or if outside consultants or contractors need to be hired.  As resources vary between facilities, so do expenses.

The need for better efficiency and the shortage of qualified facility personnel is driving successful facility managers towards ‘facility document management’ cloud solutions.  Migration to the cloud solves the resources issue by consolidating contracts, drawings, photos, and other needed data on a central platform accessible by in-house or hired experts located at corporate headquarters, or anywhere in the world.

Even though an essential part of facilities, resources dedicated to maintenance and work order management seem to overshadow other critical aspects of facility ownership and occupancy, such as resources needed to negotiate and secure agreements with your management or maintenance company, bankers and partners, insurance, and any other documented agreement needed to successfully operate or increase the value of a facility.  Benefits and return on investment from relying on a facility document management cloud solution are multiple:

  • expert opinion every time: no wasted efforts on trial and error solutions,
  • reduced number of experts needed: one can cover multiple facilities,
  • easier and more affordable hires: a generalist at each facility can communicate with centralized experts,
  • normalization of expenses between facilities,
  • learning from and subsequent development of a centralized knowledge base for best management practices (BMPs),
  • documentation of institutional knowledge,
  • and cost reduction as BMPs and best pricing are applied across-the-board.


Successful ownership or occupancy of facilities without a well-structured ‘facility document management’ application is overwhelming for multi-facility portfolio owners and managers.  An industry specific software solution is needed to combine and draw analytics from the unprecedented amount of information available through the 3 indicators (location, condition, and resources).  When a ‘document management plan’ is implemented properly, organizations benefit by making feedback accessible to a broader range of personnel and decision makers, giving them tools to extract knowledge and exceptions, and guiding them towards measurable efficiencies.

Whether you own or occupy one or many facilities in multiple locations with multiple compliance and operational requirements, a single-touch data collection software solution will redefine your measure of success for the 3 indicators from simply locating a document to developing deep knowledge of its content.

Please share your knowledge indicators here.