By Ameeta Soni, Chief Marketing Officer, VFA, Inc.

Turning an organization’s strategic facilities plan, which often has a five- to ten-year horizon, into an actionable annual budget can be challenging. Few organizations are fortunate enough to be able to fund all of the capital requirements they have identified. So the process of prioritization begins! This is step four in the process of facilities capital planning and management.

Organizations must create consistent criteria for evaluating each project, in line with strategic objectives, and follow a consistent process for applying those criteria. Statistical ranking methods, such as pair-wise comparisons, can be used to facilitate the process. After each capital request is enumerated individually, all requests for a funding source can be ranked by score.

When organizations have a basis for making informed decisions about project prioritization and capital budget allocation, they are less vulnerable to emergency failures. Emergency repair projects typically result in hefty premiums for labor, rushed shipments, unplanned one-off purchases, and loss of productivity.

How are you prioritizing facility projects?

Dates: April 21 – April 23, 2013
Venue: Seaport Boston Hotel, Boston, Massachusetts

Our annual three-day customer conference features a range of speakers including industry leaders, VFA experts, and your peers, as well as the CapStar Awards dinner, and the sights and sounds of Boston.

We invite you to submit a speaking proposal for VFA Connections 2013.  Your proposed topic may address any aspect of facilities capital planning and management, or capital spend management.  All selected speakers will receive one free registration for the conference and one night’s complimentary hotel accommodation.

Schedule:

  • Sunday evening:                  Welcome reception
  • Monday:                                Conference sessions and CapStar Awards Dinner
  • Tuesday:                                Conference sessions until 4:30 pm

Questions? Need More Information?
Please contact Julie Cunniff at connections@vfa.com or (617) 772-8229

Register & find out more

 

BURNABY, B.C.—November 5, 2012—VFA Canada Corporation, the leading provider of end-to-end solutions for facilities capital planning and asset management, today announced it will be presenting at the Real Property Institute of Canada (RPIC) National Workshop, November 6-8, 2012 in Montreal, Quebec. VFA will also be exhibiting in Booth 10 and featuring VFA.facility®, its facility capital planning and management software, and its facility condition assessments services.

Susan Anson, president, VFA Canada, will discuss “Are you Throwing Good Money at Bad Buildings? Decision-Making Beyond Building Condition Data” on Wednesday, November 7 at 3:45 p.m. When deciding whether a building merits further investment, it’s important to take a strategic, three-pronged approach, looking at the facility portfolio holistically and examining facility condition, demographics and functional adequacy to do comprehensive portfolio rationalization analysis.

Attendees will learn how any analysis, in order for it to be valid, must be based on accurate, objective data, including an understanding of current facility condition and remediation costs, functionality and demographics. Without access to detailed information regarding these issues, facilities managers and capital planners find it virtually impossible to decide whether buildings warrant further investment or are ready for disposition.

Anson will also be participating in an “Ask the Expert” table session on best practices in prioritization for decision-making on Thursday, November 8 at 8:45 a.m. All facilities teams face the challenge of prioritization, especially with tight budgets, regardless of the type of facilities they manage or the population they serve. Attendees will learn best practices in objectively prioritizing projects and developing defensible capital budgets.

To connect with VFA, please follow us on Twitter at @VFAINC, or visit our blog, Foundations, which is aimed at providing information to readers that serves as a foundation for intelligent capital spending and facilities capital planning and management.

At IFMA World Workplace, the International Facility Management Association’s annual conference and exhibition, on Thursday, November 1, at 2:30 p.m., Susan Irving of VFA will discuss “Harnessing Mobile Technology for Facility Self-Assessments.” Attendees will learn how a facility self-assessment solution is an efficient way to baseline facility condition data, identify trouble areas, and keep data up-to-date. When conducted with market-leading mobile devices like an iPad or Android tablet, self-assessment leads to more productivity.

VFA is exhibiting in Booth 510 and featuring VFA.auditor®, its facility self-assessment solution, and VFA.facility®, its facility capital planning and management software.

Yesterday, Susan Buchanan, LEED AP and project director at VFA, received a 2012 FMJ Editor’s Picks Award for her contributed article, “Sustainability on a Budget,” from the January/February issue of Facility Management Journal.

On Friday night, VFA client Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory Facilities Division will be awarded the IFMA Sheila Sheridan Award for Sustainable Design and Energy Efficient Projects.

We’re pleased to see our clients and employees recognized for their contributions to the practice of facility management. We hope to see you at IFMA World Workplace.

Facilities Manager

Date: Thursday, November 15, 2012
Time: 9:00 AM Pacific/12:00 Eastern
Length: 45 minutes
Fees: This webinar is complimentary
Location: Available Online Using WebEx

Aging facilities, statewide budget cuts, and limited resources have made it difficult for many school districts to keep pace with the repairs and renovations necessary to support academic learning. Facilities departments often struggle with how to allocate limited resources to school facilities needs fairly, cost-effectively and efficiently while taking into account facility condition, educational adequacy, and other priorities.

In this webinar, we’ll discuss how Anchorage School District (ASD) implemented an integrated asset management system, focused on the collection of facility condition and educational adequacy data for 7.7 million square feet of facilities. The resulting data, including not only a Facility Condition Index but also an Educational Adequacy Index, serves as a basis for determining costs and priorities, and is used for both short- and long-term planning purposes.

In this webinar, you’ll learn:

  • About the people, process and tools ASD is using to achieve their goals
  • The process used to compare facility and system information across the District
  • How ASD developed capital budgets to address Facility Condition and Educational Adequacy needs

Speakers:
Randy Ribble PE, Facility Manager, Anchorage School District
Joseph Xavier, Senior Consultant, VFA, Inc.

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory Facilities Division Honored for Sustainable Design and Energy Efficient Projects

BOSTON—October 31, 2012—VFA, Inc., the leading provider of end-to-end solutions for facilities capital planning and asset management, today announced that client Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory Facilities Division has been named a winner of the International Facility Management Association (IFMA) Sheila Sheridan Award for Sustainable Design and Energy Efficient Projects. Berkeley Lab will receive the award at IFMA World Workplace, October 31 to November 2, 2012 in San Antonio, Texas.

The award recognizes the Facilities Division’s total program approach to institutional sustainability, including new building construction, sustainable operations and maintenance practices, collaboration with the surrounding communities, and active involvement in educating similar national labs.

Berkeley Lab, a leading research center for environmental studies, nanoscience, quantitative biology, physics and nuclear energy, consists of 107 buildings across 203 acres. Such a large and complex facility calls for a multifaceted approach to green building practices. Berkeley Lab has taken a systematic look at its buildings in order to comply with government sustainability mandates, including Executive Order 13423 and the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007.

To efficiently and critically evaluate the sustainability of existing buildings and to identify cost-effective measures to meet the requirements of the mandates, Berkeley Lab combined standard facility condition assessments with comprehensive green building assessments in partnership with VFA.

A comprehensive integrated facilities assessment, analysis, planning, work execution and reporting system was developed to ensure that maintenance investments are spent wisely in support of the scientific mission and planned with sustainability and resource conservation as priorities. The Department of Energy has recognized Berkeley Lab for developing a best-practice integrated facilities management solution.

To connect with VFA, please follow us on Twitter at @VFAINC, or visit our blog, Foundations, which provides information to readers that serves as a foundation for intelligent facilities capital planning and management.

Director of Product Marketing Susan Irving to Discuss Harnessing Mobile Technology for Facility Self-Assessments

BOSTON—October 30, 2012—VFA, Inc., the leading provider of end-to-end solutions for facilities capital planning and asset management, today announced it will be presenting at the International Facility Management Association (IFMA) World Workplace, October 31 to November 2, 2012 in San Antonio, Texas. VFA will also be exhibiting in Booth 510 and featuring VFA.auditor®, its facility self-assessment solution, and VFA.facility®, its facility capital planning and management software.

Susan Irving, director of product marketing, VFA, will discuss “Harnessing Mobile Technology for Facility Self-Assessments” on Thursday, November 1, at 2:30 p.m. Organizations face an ongoing challenge of assessing and managing the condition and required investment of its facilities.  Some opt to meet this challenge by using their own staff to collect data using a survey-driven approach.  In tandem,  advances in mobile technology are driving new efficiencies across businesses, including facility condition assessments.

Attendees will learn how a facility self-assessment solution is an efficient way to baseline facility data, identify trouble areas, and keep data up-to-date.  When conducted with market-leading mobile devices like an iPad or Android tablet, organizations experience faster adoption, more productivity and greater transparency into the facility self-assessment process.

On Wednesday, October 31, Susan Buchanan, LEED AP, project director, VFA, will receive a 2012 FMJ Editor’s Picks Award for her contributed article, “Sustainability on a Budget,” that was published in the January/February issue of Facility Management Journal. The award reception will take place at 2:30 p.m. in the press room.

To connect with VFA, please follow us on Twitter at @VFAINC, or visit our blog, Foundations, which provides information to readers that serves as a foundation for intelligent facilities capital planning and management.

Date: Wednesday, November 14, 2012
Time: 2:00 PM Eastern
Length: 45 minutes
Location: Available Online Using WebEx

When evaluating your real estate portfolio, assessments generally focus on facility condition and the structural and systems repair and renewal investments required to maintain or improve that condition. However, in order to truly understand the whole picture and make intelligent decisions, it’s important to take a broader approach and couple the facility condition with a look at the functional adequacy. Individual facilities should be evaluated to determine if they are still suited for the original purpose, or if they need to be modified for new uses. Understanding the “WHY” plays an important role in determining intelligent investment choices.

Register and learn more

VFA and Client New Mexico Public School Facilities Authority to Present on Prioritizing and Funding Projects

BOSTON—October 23, 2012—VFA, Inc., the leading provider of end-to-end solutions for facilities capital planning and asset management, today announced it will be co-presenting with client New Mexico Public School Facilities Authority at the 17th annual New Mexico Infrastructure Finance Conference (NMIFC), October 23-25, 2012 in Taos, N.M. VFA will also be exhibiting in Booth 30.

Michael Wintz, business director, state and local government/education, VFA, and Bob Gorrell, executive director, New Mexico Public School Facilities Authority, will be presenting “Prioritizing Projects at the Local Level: The Public Schools Model, How it Works and How it Could be Applied to Your Community” on Tuesday, October 23, at 3 p.m. Jimmy Rodriguez, executive capital analyst, Capital Outlay Bureau, Department of Finance and Administration, will moderate the session.

The funding prioritization model for school capital funding in New Mexico allocates funds to objectively-determine “greatest needs.” The model is regarded as a national best practice and considered fair by New Mexico’s school districts. Attendees will learn if a similar model can be used by local communities and/or regions to allocate funding in a more efficient and effective manner.

VFA helps public school systems to effectively demonstrate the need for funding and create capital budgets based on accurate, objective data. VFA will be featuring its facility self-assessment solution, VFA.auditor®, and its facility capital planning and management software, VFA.facility®. VFA.auditor offers facility managers an efficient and cost-effective way to gather reliable facility condition data across school facilities. It is a standalone solution for schools that conduct assessments with their own staff or a complementary solution for schools that also use third parties for assessments. Integration with VFA.facility lets schools take advantage of robust prioritization, business intelligence and what-if scenario tools to develop a defensible capital plan.

To connect with VFA, please follow us on Twitter at @VFAINC, or visit our blog, Foundations, which provides information to readers that serves as a foundation for intelligent facilities capital planning and management.