A Thank You to Our Clients

Our annual VFA Connections customer conference is just a month away, but the agenda is already packed with motivating speakers, product demos and breakout discussions. Here at VFA, we are excited for the chance to share insights, discuss product direction, and participate in interactive roundtables. But most importantly, we look forward to the chance to personally connect with our clients. We appreciate each and every relationship we have built over the years and thoroughly enjoy the opportunity to visit with the facility managers we work with throughout the year.

The three-day event kicks off with a Welcome Reception on Sunday night at the Seaport Boston Hotel. Conference sessions run all day Monday and Tuesday and will include VFA speakers as well as breakout sessions that put our customers in the spotlight. Facility managers from organizations such as Canadian Forces Base Esquimalt and the University of Rochester will speak about their successful implementation of facilities capital planning and management programs. On Monday night, we are hosting a Reception and Dinner at the brand-new Boston Tea Party Ships and Museum and will be handing out VFA’s annual Capstar Award to a customer who exemplifies the innovative application of software technology and business processes that support capital planning and management.

VFA Connections is all about our clients and we can’t wait to see you there! For a closer look at the daily sessions, check out our VFA Connections 2013 agenda.

Let the countdown begin!

 

Join the conversation on Twitter by using #VFAConnections

Guest Blogger Paul Gatland, UK-based Sales Director at VFA Ltd., explains the importance of strategic planning for facility portfolios.

In 2013, an aging estate combined with economic challenges means that the need for accurate long-term planning, budgeting and forecasting is more critical than ever. Government ministries, schools, hospitals, and corporations are challenged to plan for and manage facilities as effectively and efficiently as possible. How can organisations maximise the value of their existing estate on a lean budget? How can they determine which critical projects should be funded and which can be deferred?

Facility management resources are challenged to take the lead on this. It’s key that the long view is not based on opinions or predictions, but on objective hard data and sophisticated analysis. Increasingly, FMs are looking to software tools for FM and capital planning, as data becomes increasingly complex and voluminous. Technology can help convert large amounts of raw data into meaningful information for intelligent decision-making. Facilities teams need to be armed with the tools they need to request funds and demonstrate the consequences since most organisations require a return on investment (ROI) justification for key expenditures. Securing the best software solution for an effective, strategic facilities capital plan is no exception. Some of the benefits that can be expected from using software to track, manage and analyse facility data include:

• When facility conditions are known and scheduled repairs and renewals are performed, the likelihood of costly emergency repairs and down time, resulting in a loss of business continuity, is decreased.
• Procurement costs are also lowered when organisations can view their entire portfolio of planned projects, enabling them to bundle projects and buy at reduced bulk rates.
• Estate-wide project planning reduces the likelihood of duplicate purchases and over-buying
• Proactive facilities management means that when projects are planned in advance, there is sufficient time to gather competitive pricing.
• With solid facility condition data and benchmarks, organisations can model the economics of building repair vs. new construction.

As estates become an increasingly significant aspect of an organisation’s strategic plans, the need for accurate long-term planning, budgeting and forecasting is increasingly more critical. The best way to do this?  Leverage the latest tools to enable smart decisions.

To read my entire article, visit Tomorrow’s FM.

Correctional News

Date: Thursday, April 11, 2013
Time: 2:00 PM Eastern/11:00 AM Pacific
Length: 45 minutes
Fees: This webinar is complimentary
Location: Available Online Using WebEx

Facility Managers are looking for the right approach to obtain and maintain current facility condition data – one that meets their needs and budgets.  The Four P’s (Program, Process, Productivity and Planning) of self-sufficiency can provide a framework.

Attend this live webinar and learn how VFA customers are leveraging their own resources and latest technology to get the most out of their investment are successfully employing the Four P’s to:

  • Establish an evergreen strategy for facility data
  • Create a workflow that gets the most out of facility staff knowledge
  • Increase productivity, reduce manual processes, and stay on top of the most pressing facility needs
  • Leverage data for enhanced strategy planning that impacts the entire organization

register & find out more

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory Facilities Division Honored for Developing a Multifaceted Sustainability Program

BOSTON—March 14, 2013—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 received a 2013 FMXcellence award from Building Operating Management at the National Facilities Management & Technology Conference & Expo held March 12-14, 2013, at the Baltimore Convention Center.

Building Operating Management’s FMXcellence Recognition Program acknowledges in-house facility management teams that apply best practices and innovation to meet their organization’s priorities. The Facilities Division developed a multifaceted sustainability program that involved LEED standards for construction, energy efficiency upgrades, employee involvement and extensive communication.

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 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.

“Researchers at Berkeley Lab are addressing the world’s most urgent scientific challenges, and the Facilities Division’s role is to build, modernize and maintain sustainable mission-ready facilities to support the research. This recognition for our solution is much appreciated,” said Ken Fletcher, deputy director, Facilities Division, Berkeley Lab.

“We are extremely pleased that our longstanding client has been recognized with the 2013 FMXcellence award from Building Operating Management,” said Jerry Kokos, president and CEO, VFA, Inc.   ”Berkeley Lab’s leading-edge approach to meeting and exceeding sustainability goals sets a powerful example for other organizations.”

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.

University Facility Departments Take a Self-Sufficiency Approach to Obtain and Maintain Current Facility Condition Data

BOSTON—March 12, 2013—VFA, Inc., the leading provider of end-to-end solutions for facilities capital planning and asset management, today announced it will host a complimentary webinar on “Establishing a Self-Sufficient Data Collection Program” for facilities capital planning on Wednesday, March 13, 2013 at 2 p.m. ET.

Higher education facility departments are looking for the right approach to obtain and maintain current facility condition data—one that meets their needs and budgets. The Four P’s (Program, Process, Productivity and Planning) of self-sufficiency can provide a framework.

In this 45-minute live webinar, attendees will learn how major North American universities are successfully employing the Four P’s to:

  • Establish an evergreen strategy for facility data
  • Create a workflow that gets the most out of facility staff knowledge
  • Increase productivity, reduce manual processes and stay on top of the most pressing facility needs
  • Leverage data for enhanced strategy planning that impacts the entire organization

Those interested in the webinar can register here.

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.

Higher education facility departments always seem to face the challenge of balancing budgets while fulfilling the needs of the campus and its users – and this is true now more than ever before. But with the right approach, obtaining and maintaining current facility condition data can be achieved regardless of budget constraints. The solution is data collection based on the framework of the Four P’s of self-sufficiency: Program, Process, Productivity and Planning.

Today’s complimentary webinar will discuss how major North American universities are successfully employing the Four P’s to:

  • Establish an evergreen strategy for facility data
  • Create a workflow that gets the most out of staff knowledge
  • Increase productivity, reduce manual processes and help managers stay on top of the most pressing facility needs
  • Leverage data for enhanced strategy planning that impacts the organization as a whole

Learn how university facility departments take a self-sufficiency approach to obtain and maintain current facility condition data, enabling strategic facilities capital planning and management decisions.

Register for our complimentary webinar, streaming live at 2 p.m. ET

 

Isn’t it time your facilities data collection became self-sufficient?

 

March 12, 2013 – March 14, 2013: NFMT 2013 Baltimore

Today at Building Operating Management’s National Facilities Management and Technology Show (NFMT), VFA announced that the next release of VFA.facility will feature new map-based views of the assets in a real estate portfolio, integrating the latest GIS technology from Esri.

If you’re at the show, we encourage you to visit VFA at booth #1839 to see how you can view asset locations on a map, color-coded based on the condition of each asset. Facility managers can access details and photos on the map, and link directly to a detailed asset record.

This latest VFA.facility release is part of an effort to provide facility managers with tools to visually navigate and analyze their facility portfolios, enabling optimal facilities capital planning and management decisions. Strategic facilities capital planning is easier when the data is centralized and accessible.  Stop by our booth to see Map Views in real time!

VFA.facility 10.3 Integrates Geographic Information System Technology from Esri®

BOSTON—March 11, 2013—VFA, Inc., the leading provider of end-to-end solutions for facilities capital planning and asset management, today announced that the upcoming release of its its flagship software product, VFA.facility®, will provide map-based views of the assets in a real estate portfolio, integrating the latest technology from Esri, a leading provider of geographic information systems (GIS).

Based on asset selections or on the results of a search, VFA.facility customers can view asset locations on a map, color coded based on the condition of each asset.  Customers can access additional information and photos in the map view, and can link directly to a detailed asset record. The mapping features in VFA.facility are enabled by Esri’s ArcGIS API, and delivered as a Web service.

“VFA is commited to providing our customers with tools to visually navigate and analyze their real estate portfolios to promote optimal facilities capital planning and management decisions,” said Jerry Kokos, president and CEO of VFA.  “By employing Web services technology and secure APIs, VFA can deliver such visual data analysis tools to a wide array of devices, including mobile devices.”

VFA will demonstrate VFA.facility version 10.3 at Booth #1839 during the National Facilities Management & Technology Conference & Expo, March 12-14, 2013, at the Baltimore Convention Center.

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.

Facilities capital planning solutions will be on display next week when VFA exhibits at Building Operating Management’s National Facilities Management and Technology Show (NFMT).

NFMT is the largest gathering of facility managers, building owners, maintenance managers, property managers, construction/engineering managers, energy managers, and other facilities management professionals in the United States. This dynamic, interactive facilities conference and product expo, held at the Baltimore Convention Center, delivers new ideas, best practices, and career-boosting inspiration.

The NFMT Conference program features more than 120 educational sessions that are entirely free to facilities management professionals. Choose from every topic imaginable: From best practices for reducing energy, to maintenance planning and scheduling, to Finance 101 for FMs, to a review of ADA regulations, to developing a leadership style that leads to success, NFMT’s educational sessions cover all the topics vital to facilities management success.

We are excited for the opportunity to network with over 5,000 other facility professionals and industry leaders and discuss the challenges and solutions of 2013. The conference promises a great turn-out and a packed agenda that is sure to educate and empower all that attend.  Stop by VFA’s booth #1839 to learn about the latest in facilities capital planning and management solutions, and check out demonstrations of VFA.facility® and VFA.auditor Mobile™.  Tune in next week for an announcement from VFA on the newest way to interact with facility data.