Measuring Space Utilization in the Era of the IoT

Technologies to better understand how your employees are engaging your space

Smart Building Technology continues to evolve at a rapid pace. Many organizations are actively researching or implementing technologies to aid in collecting data on true building performance in order to make better decisions using actionable intelligence. While sensor technologies are gaining a lot of headlines, it’s important to note that some of the technologies that your organization may already have in place can help you get on the road to being able to perform science-based analytics on space utilization data. This includes the very same Wi-Fi technologies that we use every single day to access information on our smart phones, tablets, laptops, etc. that are part of our corporate or institutional IT infrastructure. These Wi-Fi solutions that connect Internet of Things (IoT) sensors in some instances can already provide triangulation of signals to help you locate and track how these devices move throughout your organization, for instance. Additional technologies such as your current badging solutions and employee facing digital signage such as room booking, desk booking, and kiosks can also provide a strong base of data for your space utilization initiatives.

Below are the top 5 things you should know when you begin to implement a data driven approach to space utilization:

IoT and Sensors are Hot

Sensors can help to provide data and improve various performance KPI’s, however, we can see that organizations are often drowning in unused data. Sensors are best deployed to solve specific known use cases to supplement already existing data sources. Output and results should be understood in advance so you can be sure you are solving the right problem.

Balancing Costs with Upkeep

While the per unit costs of sensors have dropped dramatically in recent years, the cost of operating and maintaining them is still high. This needs to be taken into consideration when using sensor-based technology to augment the data collection needed to perform space utilization analytics.

You May Already Have the Solution

Most organizations already have multiple data sources, and if they were to apply advanced analytics and data science to them, these data sources could yield tremendous insights. As mentioned above, this could include badging systems, Wi-Fi technology from companies like Cisco and intelligent digital lighting solutions from companies like Osram.

Best in Class

Smart organizations are first inventorying what data they have, implementing a data governance process, and then implementing smart analytics to mine the data. This is the best place to start before you select additional data driven solutions to help you measure and analyze spatial performance of your facilities.

Doing Analytics Can Be Hard

Most organizations are not staffed or experienced enough to do analytics well, especially space planning and real estate teams. This highlights the need for technologies to help organizations better understand how your employees are engaging with your space. Science based analytics take a deep understanding of massive amounts of data that could be coming from multiple data sources and often includes data that requires specialized staffing resources to understand especially when data is coming from IoT based sensor solutions and Wi-Fi networks, digital lighting, and more. Deep analytics platforms such as the FM:Systems Rifiniti Optimo solution have been purpose built to help organizations perform this type of highly accurate analysis on complex spatial data and can help you effectively measure space utilization in the era of the IoT.