Frequently Asked Questions – All About Autonomous FM & Our Integrator Model

Maintaining Luxury Residential – £8.5bn Greenwich Peninsula Development

A Better Way to Outsource? The Facilities Management Integrator Model

The Power of Big Data for Improved Asset Management

Improving FM – A Turn-Key Solution Beginning Before Construction?

Autonomous FM Shortlisted for Specialist Award by Construction News

Wish Us Luck For Monday’s BIFM Awards!

Integrating SME’s into the Supply Chain

The Added Value of a Facilities Management Integrator

Benchmarking – Using Big Data for Smarter Procurement

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(+44) 203 790 7333

Q11, Quorum Business Park, Benton Lane, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE12 8BU

The facilities management integrator delivery model is very much in its infancy. There are varying degrees of understanding within the industry on exactly what it is, how it works and what the benefits are.

 

Generally, when we visit or talk to prospective new clients, the same questions always seems to come up. With this is in mind we have put together our latest blog to explore and explain the most frequently asked questions about the integrator model:

 

What Exactly is an FM Integrator?

 

An FM Integrator is a matured version of the Managing Agent model, with a dedicated focus on facilities management. The Integrator sits between the client and supply chain providing business intelligence and an independent, impartial view on supplier performance, finance and cost control, workplace experience and FM compliance together with a strategic approach to the entire estate

 

Are You a CAFM System?

 

No, our Integrator model focuses more on managing your assets and contractors to provide an independent metric and data led service that puts you back in control. We can provide a CAFM system as part of our service or manage an existing system by integrating our mobile and cloud technology to provide our market-leading real-time business intelligence platform.

 

Do You Just Provide FM Technology?

 

No, Autonomous FM is an independent facility management company who embrace emerging technology. We use mobile, cloud and IoT based technology to manage assets and contractors, improve service delivery, create value and drive innovation for our clients.

 

Do You Deliver Services?

 

No, we remain completely independent from service delivery to provide impartial management. With no vested interest in the delivery of a service, we are 100% client focused. We sit directly between the client and their supply chain, providing helpdesk and management support based on real-time asset and performance data and business intelligence.

 

Do You Only Manage Large Estates?

 

We have a mix of clients ranging from multi-national companies with sites across ten countries to not-for-profit organisations with an individual building. Our integrator model is flexible enough to support companies of all sizes who all want to benefit from improved asset and supply chain management, innovation and smarter procurement.

 

What Makes You Different?

 

As an integrator, Autonomous offer an independent and impartial facilities management solution that takes care of the day-to-day facilities delivery, ensures complete compliance with SFG20 standards and embraces technology to drive efficiencies and service improvements.

What makes Autonomous different is that as an SME we run an agile operation that is nimble and quick to react to change. With an in-house capability that is scalable to support our sustained growth, we are flexible enough to meet the expectations of demanding clients while continually innovating through emerging technology.

 

How Do You Manage Assets Differently To Anyone Else?

 

We put great focus on improved asset management, providing full asset verification and tagging with interactive 360-degree asset mapping. We set all PPM’s to SFG20 protocols and log all reactive works against individual assets. Client asset data is then used in our business intelligence platform to provide specific reports that generate accurate life-cycle costs, CapEx projections and benchmarking to maximise the value of your assets and aid strategic decision making.

 

We hope that this blog post helps to profile the Autonomous FM Integrator solution. If you have any further questions or queries, or if you would like a demonstration of our service please contact Mark Taylor on mark.taylor@autonomousfms.com or 07518 444 838.

 

Autonomous FM is proud to be the facilities management partner to Knight Dragon on their £8.5bn regeneration development of Greenwich Peninsula, the area surrounding the O2 Arena in London.

 

Greenwich Peninsula is a mixed-use development and one of the largest urban regeneration projects in Europe. The Peninsula will eventually be home to  34,000 new settlers across seven emerging neighbourhoods, providing London with over 15,000 new places to live, two new local schools and new commercial offerings as well 5km steel framed running track and one of Europe’s busiest urban golf ranges.

 

The renowned designer Tom Dixon, originally from Greenwich, is involved in the design of 47 luxury apartments, a cruise-liner like lobby and the panoramic 15th-floor wellness centre located in the Upper RIverside development. As facilities management partners to Greenwich Peninsula, we offer a bespoke market leading service that is fitting to the style, quality and grandeur of such a prestigious development.

 

How do Autonomous FM Manage Facilities at Greenwich Peninsula?

 

Our full integrator model has been implemented at Greenwich Peninsula to ensure a comprehensive service is delivered to the residents, occupiers and developer. As a luxury residential development, Greenwich Peninsula requires attention to detail and they type of service delivery normally restricted to luxury hotels.

 

With high-end specification assets, fixtures and fittings, everything is managed to the exact manufacturer’s recommendations. All assets are tagged and we manage all works against the individual assets to give us real-time performance data. The data feeds into our Business Intelligence platform so we know at all times performance outputs, ongoing maintenance costs and asset lifecycles.

 

Through a dedicated contractor portal and mobile applications, vendors are now in control of all work orders and this generates automatic updates to the management team and residents. If a vendor is about to fail an agreed SLA our team is always on hand to gently remind them and make sure all works are closed out on time and to the correct standards. Our team then verify and audit all works in near real-time using our technology platform to seamlessly manage works from inception to completion.

 

As well as the luxury residential properties at Greenwich Peninsula, Autonomous FM also manage the hub and the golf centre, with more residential and commercial sites going live throughout 2019 and beyond.

 

Our Solutions for Greenwich Peninsula a Glance

 

 

The full article from The Telegraph on the Tom Dixon design project can be found here: ‘https://www.telegraph.co.uk/property/interiors/greenwich-scrapyards-designing-homes-skyscrapers-tom-dixons/?WT.mc_id=tmgliveapp_iosshare_ArqH2nzSTs94 

See our case study on our work with Greenwich Peninsula.

Having just read a quite damning article in the Financial Times (https://www.ft.com/content/a15ed306-ffaf-11e8-aebf-99e208d3e521) on outsourcing in the public sector I thought it would be worthwhile looking at the Autonomous facilities management Integrator model and why we deliver our solution in the way we do.

 

Firstly, we do not deliver any services. We do this in order to stay independent and impartial, by removing ourselves from service delivery we remove any vested interest and this allows us to be 100% client focused. We allow the clients and contractors to have the contractual relationship and we sit in the middle, providing a data and metric led management solution that puts clients back in control.

 

Instead of TFM or IFM outsourcing to one main contractor, our solution provides the flexibility to pick the optimal mix of contractors to deliver based on their size, geographical location and service delivery type. SME’s are more easily integrated into the supply-chain and benefit from having that direct relationship with the client, our blog below explores this in more detail:

 

Integrating SME’s into the Supply Chain

 

By remaining independent we are able to funnel all performance data on facilities delivery from multiple contractors through our systems and this gives us the ability to benchmark costs in real-time. Business Intelligence (BI) reports use client data to identify trends, compare costs and procure in much smarter ways. This allows us to benchmark costs at the tender stage to identify if any tender from a given contractor is deliverable and sustainable against the current market rates. Our blog on using ‘Big Data’ provides a little more information on our benchmarking:

 

Benchmarking – Using Big Data for Smarter Procurement

 

It will always depend on the type of service that is being outsourced, but with the bad rap that the facilities industry has taken from the fallout of Carillion, and most recently the warning about Interserve, should the industry be looking at more sustainable models?

 

At Autonomous, we believe that our Integrator model is the perfect fit for outsourcing as we provide the visibility and transparency that is so clearly lacking when outsourcing. We can spread the risk by selecting specialist contractors and integrating more SME’s into the supply-chain working on a direct basis with the end client. Our ability to collect, manage and interpret client data to make impactful and significant changes puts clients firmly back in control while only having to deal with one management provider.

 

If you would like to find out a little more about our facilities management Integrator model and how it could benefit your future facilities management strategy please get in touch with Mark Taylor on mark.taylor@autonomousfms.com or 07518 444 838 to discuss your outsourcing requirements.

In the facilities management sector ‘Big Data’ seems to be a high priority, but as a recent RICS report highlighted that mass adoption of the technology to capture and manage data appears to be sometime away.

 

The reasons highlighted within the report are time, knowledge and investment as the key barriers to mass adoption of big data management with only 37% of respondents in the pre-adoption stage of implementing big data management while 35% are in the early adoption stage.

 

In this blog post, we would like to share our practical experience of big data management with a focus on asset management and how you can harness the data from each asset to improve performance, reduce spending and plan more efficiently with real-time data.

 

To start, it would be best to outline exactly how we capture the data, how we use it and what the outputs are. Here is a brief overview of our process:

 

• In the first instance, we conduct full asset surveys, and all data is captured by our team to guarantee the integrity of the data

• All assets are individually tagged and barcoded, and then the data is uploaded to our CAFM system

• PPM tasks are assigned and managed against individual assets and our helpdesk team log and manage all reactive maintenance works against the individual assets

• Contractors scan the assets barcodes on site to log all works and access previous maintenance history

• We then monitor and report on all assets in real-time through our business Intelligence systems providing bespoke reporting features for clients

• This provides us with the most accurate life-cycle cost analysis available

• We then provide Annual CapEx Spend Projections based on real client data

• This leads to improved asset procurement and spending reductions based on smarter procurement using the data

 

Having a clearly defined process for asset management, utilising the emerging technology that is available and funnelling all the information through one system is key to successfully managing big data.

 

The next step is extracting the value form the data; we use our Business Intelligence (BI) technology to do this in several ways:

 

• Benchmarking – We can benchmark maintenance costs for specific work disciplines. This can be done on a direct cost basis against the marketplace, against SFG20 protocols, across different countries, and against contractors tendered costs.

• KPI & SLA Monitoring – We can build contract terms into our BI and measure performance against the contract in real-time to determine an accurate reflection of the agreed KPI’s & SLA’s, removing self-reporting from contractors.

• Asset Performance – Through BI we monitor maintenance costs on assets against replacement costs. Once the costs to maintain reaches the value to replace we our BI flags this up to our team and changes the status of the asset on capital projections.

• Invoice Monitoring – Our BI monitors all invoices submitted cross-referencing them with actual time spent working on assets to guarantee that clients never overspend on works. This can include measuring contracted time on a contract against one-off reactive tasks to ensure that all work is delivered to the contractual terms.

 

In our experience, implementing the correct asset management plan is crucial to big data management, if you can’t measure it, how can you manage it?

 

At Autonomous, we have the knowledge, experience and solution to deliver at least 20% budget savings through improved big data interpretation and asset management. If you would like our expert help and advice, please contact Mark Taylor on mark.taylor@autonomousfms.com or 07518 444 838 for an informal discussion of your requirements.

Why aren’t the Facilities Manager’s involved with architects and consultants when designing new builds? It seems to make so much sense that an experienced Facility Manager should work hand in hand with an architect to provide practical advice on the everyday usability of a building.

 

More often than not, a Facilities Manager inherits a wonderful building that is aesthetically amazing but potentially lacking on some scale the practicalities required to manage and maintain sustainable facilities delivery.

 

A recent article in FMJ highlights the maintenance spend on buildings over their life-cycle ranges from 4.5% to 10% of build cost per annum while 70-85% of the maintenance costs can be influenced during the design stage.

 

The article goes on to highlight some clear points where Facilities Manager can get involved at ground zero on the project and add experience and insight that the architects may not have on a practical level. During the initial planning and design stage more emphasis has to be put on including a Facilities Manager as they have invaluable knowledge on retrofitting solutions to improve facilities delivery, so why not get them involved earlier and save time and money?

 

If introduced during the design stage the Facilities Managers could ask the questions; How would we access that space? How could we possibly clean that? Can a MEWP fit in there? Why is that concealed, where is the access? Are you adding a man safe system to that roof? The list could go on forever.

 

It is clear that early engagement with Facilities professionals is nowhere near being commonplace on new build projects, so what is the answer?

 

In our opinion, architects and consultants need to see the value that an experienced Facilities Manager brings to the table, and either introduce an in-house resource to continually review plans or identify specialist FM consultants to partner with on projects moving forward.

 

Taking it one step further, the facilities delivery model could be identified before the building has even been built, and the design could take shape with the long-term plan in mind. This means that the Facilities Manager involved in the design, would continue involvement throughout the build and then take control of the building on handover – improving continuity and retaining all knowledge.

 

The article goes on to highlight the benefits that adopting this approach would bring “Involving facility managers in project design will result in designs and material choices that make facilities easy and more cost-effective to operate and maintain creating a better outcome for both the client and most importantly the end-users of the building”.

 

We would be interested in speaking with clients, architects or consultants who would be interested in discussing an FM solution that could be introduced at the design stage and carried on through practical completion, handover and on to asset and life-cycle management – a true turn-key solution. Contact Mark Taylor on mark.taylor@autonomousfms.com to discuss potential opportunities.

 

Here is the link to FMJ and the article – ‘Constructive Criticism’ – https://www.fmj.co.uk/constructive-criticism/

We are delighted to announce that Construction News Awards have shortlisted us in their newly created category for ‘facilities management specialists’.

 

Our unique integrator model and the innovative work we deliver to a diverse range of clients was key to being shortlisted for the award. In such a highly competitive category we have shown that we lead the way in the future of facilities management through our integrated technology-led solution.

 

Mark Taylor, Business Development Manager for Autonomous commented “Being recognised by Construction News as an FM specialist is an excellent achievement for us, especially as an SME competing against much more established organisations.

 

“Our team work so hard to provide such a forward-thinking service and deliver over and above what we promise to our customers. This recognition is a testament to the hard work of the whole team, and we look forward to the awards evening”.

 

The awards take place on Wednesday 27th March at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London.

 

The full shortlist for the awards can be found here: https://specialistsawards.constructionnews.co.uk/shortlist-2019

 

Good luck to all the entrants!

n Monday evening, we’ll be in attendance at the prestigious BIFM awards in London. Everything is even more exciting this year as we’ll be attending as finalists in the category for ‘Innovation in Services and Products’.

 

As a relatively new player in the sector, with a new business model, it is such a fantastic achievement for the whole team to be recognised for the innovative service that we provide. Monday night will be the culmination of two years of hard work to raise the profile of our integrator model and the considerable advantages it has for clients.

 

The future looks bright with the integrator model being picked up by Crown Commercial Services (CCS) on their new FM Marketplace Framework, a nod that this model holds a significant place for the future public sector outsourcing.

 

Whether we are awarded the award or not, it will be a celebration of how far we have come as a business and a toast to a bright future as we position ourselves at the forefront of facilities management.

 

Wish us Luck!

Integrating small and medium-sized businesses (SME’s) into the facilities supply chain is a big challenge for both the public and private sectors. With public sector organisations all agreeing to spend at least 30% with SME’s, it is a challenge to engage with them as history has shown that public sector outsourcing is generally more favourable to larger providers.

 

One of the barriers to success is the increased management resources needed to manage multiple smaller regional contractors. With management resource already stretched, FM’s are fighting a losing battle. With little C-Suite influence and growing responsibilities across the wider workplace, do they have the time and support to integrate SME’s? Probably not is the answer.

 

But, is there another solution? Outsourcing to one company has been the preferred choice for many reasons. It is easier to deal with and pay only one company, that company can provide a full end to end management with FM’s responsibility only being auditing and signing off works. Outsourcing puts the majority, if not all risk on the outsourced contractor, and often it seems like the most cost-effective solution – but is all of that true?

 

No, in reality, you can lose control and visibility when outsourcing through TFM and most often than not, what is promised at the tender stage is not delivered throughout the contract. When chasing the unsustainable margins that were tendered, contractors are more likely to cut corners and underdeliver. As a lot of contractors use their own systems for self-reporting, it is often difficult for the client to get transparency and in turn, this can create an issue with trust.

 

Now we are not saying that all TFM contracts are bad, but a lot can be improved and through our experience the above outlines the thoughts and concerns of some clients that we work with and speak talk to regularly. On the flip side, integrating SME’s into the supply-chain on a direct contractual basis also has its barriers to success.

 

Both local and central government contracts can be sizable, often enough to put significant strain on an SME in both delivery and management of contracts. The scalability of such organisations can be a concern. Some SME’s don’t have the same quality business processes or CSR experience that more prominent, more established contractors do, and this can also be a put-off.

 

So, is there a better way to integrate SME’s into the supply-chain? In short, the answer is yes. How? Use an FM Integrator.

 

BIFM describe the Integrator as “a matured and improved version of the Managing Agent model. The Integrator sits between the client and supply chain providing business intelligence and an independent, impartial view on supplier performance, finance and cost control, workplace experience and FM compliance together with a strategic approach to the entire estate.

 

“The benefits include a single point of information and the ability to choose the best service partner for the job together with an increased strategic insight into the estate. This approach is being adopted by organisations with large, complex portfolios”.

 

An integrator provides independent asset and contract management using advances in technology and business intelligence to deliver FM services. As an independent management service, we can manage and audit a TFM contract, or more importantly integrate any number of specialist service providers to support facilities delivery. We offer the flexibility to choose the best possible solution while using one management resource.

 

We provide third-party technology to funnel all performance information through a centralised system, by removing self-reporting from contractors, we can monitor, audit and approve work in real-time. Working in real-time allows us to manage data and use business intelligence for benchmarking and trend analysis, which is proven to save clients an average of 30%.

 

Our integrated model is 100% client focussed, with no vested interest in the contract delivery we are free to create innovation, value and improved integration throughout the supply-chain. With SME’s set to miss out on £33.5bn worth of contracts by 2020, we offer a scalable solution that is proven to deliver results.

 

Please don’t hesitate to get in touch with Mark Taylor at mark.taylor@autonomousfms.com or 07518 444 838 to discuss the Integrator model and see how it could benefit your future FM strategy.

 

Link to Proactis blog on SME’s losing out on £35.5bn worth of contracts by 2020 – https://blog.tendersdirect.co.uk/2018/04/09/smes-to-miss-out-on-33-5bn-worth-of-government-contracts-by-2020/

At Autonomous, our whole business model is designed to add value to clients by ensuring they always receive improved service, greater value and innovation from their supply chain. We do this in several ways:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We would love to let you know a little more about our unique Facilities Management Integrator service and how it could benefit your future FM requirements. To find out more, please contact Mark Taylor at mark.taylor@autonomousfms.com or 07518 444 838.

The race to the bottom has been a common theme in facilities management procurement for some time, and with so much competition in the market there will always be a contractor willing to do it for less, but as we’ve recently seen with Carillion, it is not sustainable.

 

Most property and procurement professionals know there is a smarter way to procure but don’t have the data that they need to do so. In a recent paper by RICS on ‘Big Data’, 37% of respondents were in the pre-adoption stage of implementing big data management while 35% are in the early adoption stage. The research highlights just how few companies are collecting or using the potential data they have available.

 

In our experience, very few clients have any data of value, with most assets lists out of date and lacking quality information. Having the correct data on your assets and contracts allows for specific smart procurement which creates much better value in the long run.

 

We generally find that:

 

With advances in technology, managing assets and contractors has never been as efficient. Costs can be benchmarked across different contracts and countries to get a real cost of FM delivery, allowing you to highlight areas of concern.

 

Through benchmarking, you can see where you are paying over the market rate, and it allows you to explore the reasons in real-time as soon as a trend is identified. The same goes for where you are potentially paying lower than the market rate, trend analysis can highlight that under-spend is potentially putting your assets, compliance and general maintenance at risk.

 

By using real-time business intelligence and benchmarking, we can procure or work with procurement departments to use the most accurate asset and performance data to benchmark current market costs.

 

The benefits to successful procurement are massive, you know before going to market what the prices are to deliver the work through already benchmarked data. You use that data to assess the submissions and help inform your decision making picking the best contractor for the job.

 

The other main benefit is using the data to split tenders into regional/national specialists, moving away from TFM to gain even better value. SME’s and regional contractors can’t compete nationally and often struggle to compete with the established main contractors. Our solution supports SME’s and simplifies tendering by using benchmarked information that is true and valid.

 

We aim to remove the often-blind pricing process, using out of data cost schedules and poor asset information. Instead, we offer real-time asset, contract and performance information, benchmarked against other contracts on a national and international level.

 

In the case of Carillion, had benchmarked data been used by the numerous public and private sector organisations it would have become apparent a lot sooner that their pricing and delivery was unsustainable and may have led to Carillion winning less work and stopped them becoming a “giant and unsustainable corporate time bomb”.

 

This blog follows the recent article published by FMJ titled ‘Life After Carillion’ – https://www.fmj.co.uk/life-after-carillion/

Link to the RICS Paper titled ‘Big Data: A new revolution in the facilities management sector’ – http://www.rics.org/uk/knowledge/research/research-reports/big-data-a-new-revolution-in-the-uk-facilities-management-sector/

Link to Parliamentary Inquiry into the Carillion collapse – https://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/commons-select/work-and-pensions-committee/news-parliament-2017/carillion-report-published-17-19/