Are You Ready to Support Your Mission?

December 15, 2010

By Ray Dufresne

Is the physical infrastructure of your organization capable of supporting your company’s goals?

Maybe you’d be surprised to learn that some school buildings are not actually ready to house students and faculty, or that some laboratories are not physically equipped for scientists to perform experiments. Organizations today need to work overtime to determine whether their facilities are “mission-ready” – and to identify at-risk facility assets that could jeopardize that mission.

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL), one of the leading government-sponsored research centers in the U.S., has worked hard to ensure mission readiness. LBNL is overseen and funded by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), which requires all national labs to meet certain standards, including reporting on facility condition information and facility value.

Until recently, LBNL used a hodge-podge of spreadsheets and databases to track information related to the conditions of its facilities and infrastructure. They were able to meet basic reporting requirements, but had no method in place to analyze their facilities based on mission readiness or to prioritize their facility requirements accordingly. To get a handle on mission readiness, LBNL modeled its buildings using data in VFA.facility based on risk and mission criticality. They were then able to develop priorities based on mission, and run “what if” scenarios to see what level of funding would be necessary to reduce the risk portfolio of their facilities.

According to a recent study, LBNL’s overall economic impact on the national economy is estimated at $1.6 billion a year. Technologies developed at LBNL have generated billions of dollars in revenues, and thousands of jobs. And, the organization’s facilities are finally able to fully support the scientific mission carried out by its faculty and staff.

Can your organization do the same? If not, how much do you stand to lose?

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