William M. O’Neill, CFM 2017-11-20 21:34:01
Greetings all! Technology, it seems, is the word on everyone’s lips and in their minds these days. If you were at World Workplace in Houston this year, you would have heard Jeremy Rifkin give a riveting opening keynote on technological advances, raising themes that continued to spark discussion throughout the conference. Rifkin spoke about how green energy and the internet are going to transform the world we live in. Technology is shifting rapidly and set to change reality across the globe, if we understand and apply this convergence in our communities. He gave us an overarching view of how some technologists and economists view our changing world. I leave it to each of you to consider these trends and decide for yourself how you can participate. What about a tangible example of what technology will do for us in our industry? Currently, many of us have implemented tools that we already take for granted — tools that we have assessed, installed and put to use to meet our program needs. For instance, computer maintenance management systems (CMMS) are everywhere and used quite universally in the FM environment. They allow us to plan and direct the work needed to have a healthy maintenance program. But even these tools are changing with new technological advances. The function of the CMMS will be substantially changed when voice command and recognition is introduced with these systems. Equipment will be built “smart” and communicate directly with whatever the new CMMS evolves to. If you add to the mix the introduction of robotics as the primary method to service our work systems, you will have to admit that there is a lot of process disruption and evolution to be managed. Our challenge as FM professionals is to eagerly pursue opportunities to educate ourselves on these technological advances. Our profession’s understanding of the latest trends can be hit or miss, and time may slip away without our profession knowing what is evolving, how it will impact us and how we can manage it. When we invest time in exploring the world of technology, the things we discover will have an impact on our understanding of how our workplaces can be improved. Once we begin understanding how to incorporate these technologies into our work and personal lives, the real benefits will begin to shine through. As an FM professional looking into the future, you will soon be working with technologies that may well reflect who you are, what you need and how you prefer to work. That is the beautiful outcome — technology intersecting with human contacts and improving your work experience. Explore the technologies on the horizon and use those technology to meet your needs, instead of allowing it to dictate how you need to behave.
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