One of the biggest change agents we’ve seen over the last few years has been the emergence of more flexible, open workplaces from traditional office spaces. With this change has come the importance of the occupant experience—the workplace environment and its effect on overall occupant productivity and wellness.
We have come to understand there are new ways of looking at comfort, productivity, and the utilization of space. We are creating better spaces that promote employee well-being and healthy environments that are responsive and engaging to the people who work in them. In addition, we are coming to realize the health and well-being of occupants isn’t just the purview of human resources anymore. Owners, operators, facilities managers all play an important role in ensuring that employees who work in their buildings are healthy, happy and active.
As another year approaches, many will speculate what the built environment will be. While it is never easy to predict with certainty what is likely to happen, I believe as we prepare for 2019, we are in the golden age of advancement in building automation innovation.
The pace at which technology and innovation has impacted the commercial buildings industry over the past several years has been unprecedented. The proliferation of more powerful connected devices, IoT, the increase in the use of sensors, the ability to capture data from different sources, the increased use of advanced analytics, have created an exponential rise in the volume, velocity, and adoption of these systems. It has also produced a multitude of new choices.
Commercial real estate operators and building owners are adapting to the change in building automation technology that is occurring in the industry. Innovation has reshaped how we manage, operate and interact with our buildings and facilities. Connected systems, data and analytics is broadening our conversation in the world of smart buildings - engaging not only facility operators in the discussion, but the C-Suite as well.
Today, most have embraced the fact that technology is the game changer and is the cornerstone of operating buildings as an economic model. As the technology surrounding engineering design and energy management systems have evolved, so has the dialogue around smart buildings. Driven by digital transformation and a change in value propositions; changes in the role of facilities are shifting to create healthy, safe and productive environments.
One of the primary appeals of IoT within the built environment is the ability to connect to existing data-rich devices and equipment for greater analysis and insight into their operation and performance. Over the past couple of years, we have seen clear movement toward computing and intelligence to the edge. With it, the industry is moving towards a distributed data architecture where multiple nodes work together to perform analytics at the edge.
Computing and analytics are increasingly beginning to reside at the equipment and device sources, enabling data to be generated faster, more efficiently and more reliably than ever before. The ongoing evolution of micro-processing technology has meant that sufficient computing power to perform the heavy lifting of data analysis can now be performed directly onboard the devices themselves. This evolution is happening because of the need to streamline the amount and types of data, reduce latency and manage bandwidth, reduce the amount of data sent to the cloud, reduce complexity, decrease network, improve system response time and decrease potential failure points. The result is the advent of Edge Analytics.