Understanding Why Space is the Key to Effective Facility Management

I’m continuing my “Best Practices for Space Management” series which is the first guide we have published as part of our best practices series. I hope you enjoyed learning about the making of our best practices series, benefits of space management and the top 10 things every facility manager should know about space in my first post, “Introducing the Best Practices for Space Management.”

I highly recommend you download the full guide so you can understand why space is the key to effective facility management. I’ve outlined several sections below that our guide goes into more detail about.

What is Space Inventory Data?

In our “Best Practices for Space Management” guide, we discuss how space management systems are comprised of two major information systems: space inventory and occupancy. The starting point in implementing a space management system is to define space inventory data. Space Inventory describes the physical facilities and includes sites, building, floors and spaces. Generally speaking, space inventory is separate from information about the organization and individuals occupying the space.

Coding Systems for Unique Identification

In any information system, every element needs a unique identifying code. This is certainly true of space management. An organization implementing a system will at a minimum need to select or define a coding or numbering system for the following elements:

Coding for Buildings: it is extremely important that buildings are clearly differentiated and that there is an organized method for assigning codes to new buildings
Coding and Spaces: Space codes are necessary to uniquely identify each space (room, open-plan workstation, restroom, hallway, etc.)

Classifying Space

Facilities have all these different types of spaces, but it is important that you have a practical classification system that is clearly understood. In the United States, colleges and universities use the Facilities Inventory and Classification Manual (FICM) coding for classifying space according to use.

For office space, there is no generally accepted classification system for office space. Space classification systems have been developed by Omniclass (Table 13- Spaces by Function) and by OSCRE. However, neither standard has yet to see significant adoption. Furthermore, the OSCRE standard is not a public standard and is available only to companies that have paid to join OSCRE.

Understanding Space Measurements

Over the past fifty years, the commercial real estate and facility management professions have developed generally accepted concepts and terms for space. In office space, the most widely known standard is defined by the Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA). The purpose of the BOMA standard is to define the area for which a tenant pays rent.

Graphic Sources for Space Inventory — CAD and BIM

Space inventory should originate with a graphic source, specifically Computer-Aided Design (CAD) or Building Information Modeling (BIM). Autodesk is the dominant provider of both CAD and BIM software with their AutoCAD and Revit products, so virtually all buildings for the past twenty-five years have been designed with either CAD or BIM.

Preparing AutoCAD Drawings for Space Management

It is highly unlikely that people will be ready to go with their CAD drawings and there will be some prep work that needs to be done. In this guide, we talk about the 6 things you need to do before linking to our system.

Preparing BIM Models for Space Management

Typically the BIM model was built from construction and they usually require preparation for use in a space management system. You need to consolidate your linked models so you don’t have 10 different ones, making it easier to manage.

Get Access to the Full Guide Today