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Smarter buildings – achieving operational efficiency for RNLI

8th February 2017

Smarter buildings – achieving operational efficiency for RNLI

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We recently won the prestigious 2017 i-FM Technology in FM award for our deployment of the Smart Building in a Bag at the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI). Pete Derry, our innovations director, at Interserve discusses our award winning partnership, with the RNLI.

Interserve and The RNLI

Since 2014 we have been working with the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) to deliver total facilities management across its estate. Recently there was a need from the charity to operate more efficiently to maximise the resources it has whilst continuing to look after its people. Partnering with SPICA Technologies we have developed a mobile solution called ‘Smart Building in a Bag’ which is part of the InterSmart solutions.

What is Smart Building in a Bag?

Smart Building in a Bag is a mobile solution that uses sensors to collect data and measure almost anything including operational efficiency, energy consumption and the productive/healthy office.

The Business Case

A common issue for our customers is space utilisation and understanding how to measure it. Space is becoming more expensive and charities such as the RNLI were looking at more efficient ways of utilising their buildings to make them work better, whilst also monitoring environmental conditions related to having a healthy and productive office.

Our pragmatic approach to exploiting mobile Smart Building technology gave the RNLI the valuable data and insight they needed. For RNLI this had a distinct advantage because not only did it help drive a better office environment, it also allowed cost savings to be ploughed back into the charity.

How was Smart Building in a Bag developed?

We teamed up with SPICA Technologies (SPICA) to create the sensor solution and deploy them in an Interserve office as a pilot. We were able to measure people traffic around the building and better understand environmental considerations for a healthy and productive office. After completing this pilot RNLI agreed to work with us and SPICA to support their business requirements. Our teams in Poole deployed the sensors which collected the data, published it to the Cloud and generated a combination of real-time dashboards and periodic analytics reports. An important aspect of the solution was our ability to also provide access to skilled data analysts that could help RNLI fully exploit the business value in the data.

What are the benefits?

  • Maximising value from RNLI donations which ultimately leads to saving lives at sea
  • The high quality and quantity of data allowed RNLI to make informed decisions to increase workspace utilisation by 15%
  • Allowed RNLI to benefit from a temporary Smart Building solution without needing to invest in implementing a permanent solution
  • Supported a 21% per annum saving by allowing RNLI to close areas & buildings outside of core working hours
  • Helped create a healthy building which results in healthy people

What makes this technology stand out?

It has been designed so that our business improvement teams can quickly and simply reuse the sensors across many customers, creating a pragmatic approach to delivering Smart Building benefits as well as defining the business case for a wider adoption of Smart Building solutions.

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) is the largest charity that saves lives at sea, in the UK, Channel Isles, Ireland and the Isle of Man. It provides a 24-hour on-call lifeboat search and rescue service, as well as seasonal lifeguard service.

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