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Intuitive Data Dashboards Improve Decision-Making Organisation-Wide

Company News / PR

06/10/17 | Sally Wotton

Imagine if you could unlock the meaning behind your CAFM data and collaborate with business managers on how to improve the operational efficiency of the business - FSI and Intuitive BI discuss their collaboration with PFM.

The database at the core of a CAFM system represents a key information resource capable of assisting corporate wellbeing. It is a repository of vast amounts of both current status and historic data relating to an organisation's buildings, building services and, invariably, the way space is utilised. Technological advances are allowing ever more detailed data to be collected.

This data can be turned into value Business Intelligence (BI). It is not only critical to the effective performance of day-to-day, FM-related tasks - as perceived by, for example, FM managers on the one-hand, and the subcontract suppliers appointed to carry out specific tasks on the other. BI provides the ‘big picture' organisation-wide insights, revealing trends over time, offering vital details of decision-making invaluable to senior management.

This becomes even more powerful when the CAFM data can be integrated with that from other management sources such as finance and HR.

Enhanced Decision Making

The key challenge is turning all this data into decision-making information that is relevant to the requirements of any specific individual who can add value by having access to it. Traditionally and, still predominantly, data analysts - as opposed to business users - are responsible for turning data into intelligence via laborious, time- and cost consuming manipulations of third-party spreadsheets and associated reporting tools.

This carries a number of challenges:

  • There may be a wealth of information to access but, in most cases, critical Information is only available to relevant departments or distributed only to senior management team members, typically via monthly reports
  • Such reports are manually intensive to produce
  • The reports capture a moment in time and present only static data
  • Reports invariably arrive too late to react to and can even contain errors causing doubt and unknown risk to the organisation
  • The data behind a report is rarely accessible to a non-analyst, making it impossible to ask questions or change the way it is presented
  • Information that is provided tends to have a ‘one size fits all' approach, so delivering limited value.

However, drawing on common BI requirements, gathered over time from a wide customer base, FSI in collaboration with a BI specialist, Intuitive BI, has developed a simple, built-in CAFM system tool, designed for business users. This delivers an at-a-glance ‘presentation layer' of graphical (pie charts etc) BI dashboards to individuals across an organisation.

It dispenses with much of the complex and laborious analytical functions once actioned by data analysts, placing power in the hands of the more business-oriented role of the ‘dashboard designer' and business user. The pre-built dashboard functions are customisable and allow integration of data from other sources within an organisation.

Users can also drill down to expose the data behind the dashboards enabling even greater informed decision making.

Saving implementation costs and time

These pre-built, BI dashboard tools can eliminate up to 80 percent of the consultancy time previously required to put in place relevant BI reports for a new CAFM implementation. It speeds implementation times and delivers meaningful, valuable BI to customers much sooner.

The dashboards cover:

  • Helpdesk Call Analysis
  • Customer Satisfaction
  • Finance
  • Task Analysis, including Supplier Performance
  • Assets & PPMs
  • Resource Efficiency & Workload
  • Facilities Booking
  • Management Overview

Delivering data democracy

BI dashboard portals bring a considerable level of data democracy to an organisation and maximise the value of the CAFM system as a business asset. Data can be imported from other sources to provide an integrated dashboard solution to the organisation as a whole. Using the simple tools provided, new components and dashboards can be created to provide custommade views for particular roles and needs.

Drag-and-drop implementation of the prebuilt components within the BI tool, allows the contents of the CAFM database to be diced and sliced, and combined with other data for distribution across an organisation. For instance:

  • Customers of FM outsource providers (or internal customers) with a portal showing task performance and facility utilisation
  • Suppliers with a real-time view on the tasks assigned to them, and the customer satisfaction levels they are achieving
  • Mobile maintenance engineers with a view of their outstanding tasks

Information within the dashboard can be restricted by the role or seniority of the user: for example a contract manager would only see information relating to properties in their contracts, a maintenance manager would perhaps not see financial information, and suppliers would see only their task performance.

And the information provided is personalised to individual users:

  • For a soft FM subcontractor a dashboard focus may be limited to the fine detail specifics of ensuring the consumables required to be replenished in washrooms at the end of each day are delivered; perhaps including details of consumer satisfaction from feedback via the Helpdesk.
  • A broader view of these consumables from a Purchasing dashboard may focus on quantities used over time to improve bulkbuying processes.
  • And as part of a finance dashboard view those consumables will be a jigsaw piece of the big picture within overheads, perhaps seen in terms of actual spend as against budget provision.

Supporting the workplace on the move

Traditionally, the reporting process has existed within the domain of desktop computing. This constriction no longer applies with the Intuitive BI tool. Access to business dashboards via the internet, on tablets and smartphones is now possible. Mobile BI dashboards provide real-time information and status details (of the availability of facilities, for example) via a smartphone.

In summary, the key benefit of this approach to delivering business intelligence via real time dashboards brings better-informed decisions, tactical and strategic. Reduced time in decisionmaking drives better business performance. Dashboards can be shared with multiple groups and dynamically filtered to ensure relevance. Drilling down and exposing the data behind the presentation layer allows users to gain an understanding of relevant finer details, uncover hidden trends and pursue insights, individually and collaboratively. Decision-makers get to spend more time devoted to acting on information rather than seeking it.

FSI, Concept CAFM developers, in partnership with Intuitive BI, for the provision of interactive data visualisation of the information stored in Concept Evolution.