How facility management companies are using IOT technology to comply with GRESB

November 25, 2019 by Kieran Murphy, ZiggyTec
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How facility management companies are using IOT technology to comply with GRESB

Facility management companies for years were often left with a terrible headache when it came to GRESB reporting.

They wasted precious time and money with error prone manual operations.

Nowadays, facility management companies are using the latest advancements in technology to automate utility readings, tenant billing, and more to seamlessly comply with their GRESB reports and reduce their carbon footprint.

What Is GRESB Reporting?

Well, GRESB stands for Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark and is becoming a requirement the same way as producing an annual financial statement is a legal requirement.

GRESB puts a huge onus on facility managers to produce accurate and timely data as GRESB releases its scoring reports on different buildings annually and it's becoming much more valuable to asset owners, It's a massive obligation!

In terms of financial statements, you must gather all your data for the year and produce your annual profit and loss balance sheet and get them audited.

GRESB on the other hand is kind of similar for energy and building information.

It's a huge data gathering, data quality exercise that so often, people that own these buildings contract portfolio managers to do this work for them because it's so substantial.

The same way as they contract a financial auditor to do their financial accounts.

Many facility management companies have adopted smart technology to help automate the necessary data required for their GRESB reports to ensure accuracy.

Having a GRESB score enhances the value of the building; some would even say it’s a “must have”.

The certification process allows you to benchmark the building and see how well it's doing against its peers. It provides a platform for more consistent messaging about your sustainability performance to your stakeholders and is a basis for continuous improvement.

How are facility management companies automating these readings?

Through the use of Internet of Things (IoT) technology.

IoT is the concept of enabling internet connectivity for a wide range of ‘things’ from smart energy meters to parking sensors, weather stations, GPS trackers, and countless other objects.

The purpose of IoT is to deliver additional value from physical devices and objects through data collection, analytics, machine learning, and driving insights into usage behaviours.

Smart electricity, water and gas metering devices are a perfect example of IoT where it enables new labour, economic, and sustainability efficiencies to help facility management companies comply with GRESB reporting.

Implementation of IoT technology

Low Power Wide Area Network (LPWAN) is a wireless data transport protocol that is now understood as one of the basic protocols for the implementation of IoT.

In the past few years new LPWAN technologies have emerged to fill a gap in the market where there is a need to send small messages over long distances with low power consumption and low cost.

In recent years, three key technologies have emerged to stand out from the pack as truly fit for purpose while opening new opportunities, these are;

  • Sigfox
  • LoRaWAN
  • NB-IoT

All three technologies:

  • Offer sufficient capabilities to address the vast majority of smart metering functionality and technical requirements
  • Are vendor agnostic, cater to a wide range of vendors for hardware, software and services, and do not require significant investments that lock users into single-vendor solutions
  • Provide the security required to ensure privacy of data and are resilient to tampering and malicious attacks
  • Are scalable in terms of the number of devices, users, vendors, software and services, and the areas of coverage
  • Can be established, maintained, and operated at low price points, due in part to their global scale
  • Integrating IoT technology deep into your organisation is not only a beneficial step towards a more efficient, sustainable and cost-effective operation, it is a necessary step to stay competitive in today’s rapidly shifting real estate industry.

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