By Ameeta Soni, Chief Marketing Officer, VFA, Inc.
A critical aspect in developing credible capital plans is the validity of the underlying data. Accurate cost and condition information forms the basis of the strategic Facilities Capital Planning and Management process and is paramount to the generation of budgets with realistic requirements and quantified deferred maintenance. Without access to detailed information regarding facility condition and lifecycle stage, facilities managers and capital planners find it virtually impossible to develop defensible budgets and obtain funding.
It is crucial for organizations to be proactive about which investments they need to make in their facilities by understanding:
- The composition of their facility portfolio
- The existing physical condition of their facilities
- The required remediations and their costs
Objective methods for the collection of building data include a Facility Condition Assessment (FCA), collecting detailed data on facility condition and deficiencies, generally with walk-through inspections by qualified professionals (mechanical, electrical, and architectural engineers). Another cost-effective option for data collection is guided facility self-assessment that employs a consistent, repeatable process for internal staff to capture condition data, get quick budgetary estimates and identify “hot spots” that require a detailed FCA.
How are you gathering objective, accurate, current data on the condition of your facilities?