Re-inventing buildings to be future-proof

This audio was created using Microsoft Azure Speech Services

This blog post is part of a series from Innovation Summit Barcelona 2019, a two-day event that brought together more than 3,500 industry professionals, solution experts, and IoT leaders to discuss global trends, generate bold ideas and foster a digital economy.

Modern buildings are, in some ways, as outdated as they were decades ago. Even many of the new ones that are just opening their doors aren’t built for the future. To be future-ready, buildings must be energy efficient, safe and reliable, and deliver an exceptional occupant experience. They must be able to adjust to what the future holds whether it’s advancements in technology, new environmental regulations, or changes in occupant expectations.

They must be built on a strong digital backbone that can adapt to the unexpected.

Leveraging the data

Earlier this month at the Innovation Summit in Barcelona, we looked at the underlying reason why new and existing buildings are not prepared for the future…“data chaos.” Large quantities of building data exist. The total installed base of IoT connected devices is projected to grow to more than 75 Billion worldwide by 2025. Building systems must be ready to receive, share, and analyze information across multiple systems to deliver the most benefits and adapt to a changing environment.

Why we can’t ignore the data

Data Chaos leads to inefficiency, a decrease in occupant productivity, and potential safety and reliability concerns.

It is estimated that 80% of a building’s lifecycle costs goes to maintenance and operations. Without the ability to access and analyze data, facility managers and building stakeholders lack visibility into how their building systems are performing. Buildings with complex, siloed systems and multiple networks have a huge potential for more efficiency. Too often, managers have too many disparate systems to watch over, with complex troubleshooting, leading to higher capital and operational expenses. If you don’t have visibility, how can you eliminate waste and tap into all the opportunities that exist to enhance building performance?

Occupant productivity and satisfaction continues to present unique challenges that will need to be addressed in order to have future-ready office buildings, hospitals, hotels, universities, and more. The world population is spending most of their lives indoors, in fact is estimated that we will spend close to 90% of our time inside. Additionally, the expectations for building services continues to rise among employees, patients, and guests. They expect to find the same digital conveniences they enjoy in their personal life in all other areas of their lives.  And finally, the building must be healthy so we must continuously monitor air quality and noise pollution.

In addition to being efficient and offering productive environments, buildings also must meet critical safety and reliability standards. It is imperative that building stakeholders can better predict when a system or piece of equipment will fail or require downtime because there is a disruption in power. The fire and security systems need to integrate with the building management system transferring data and giving teams access to the information they need, when they need it.

Solving our data chaos issue can help us answer all these challenges. But without the right digital infrastructure to capture, access, and analyze the data our future-ready buildings won’t exist. At the Innovation Summit Barcelona 2019, we had the opportunity to talk about solving these challenges with our global customers and partners. They are conquering the data chaos and creating future-ready buildings that will adapt to solve efficiency, production, safety, and reliability challenges. I invite you to take a moment to listen in on the Re-Inventing Buildings session featuring myself and Geert Wilmink, Executive Director of Occupier Services at CBRE.


To know more about Innovation Summit Barcelona 2019, check the other blog posts from this series:

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