Meet the Presenter – Paul Graves of the University of Kansas

October 23, 2014

Paul Graves of the University of Kansas To prepare for next week’s webinar, learn a little more about the presenter, Paul Graves, P.E. and Deputy Director of the Office of Design & Construction Management at the University of Kansas.

Don’t forget to register!

What education and/or professional experience led you to your role today?

I earned my Bachelor of Science degree in civil engineering from the University of Massachusetts (UMass) at Amherst and Master of Science degree in environmental engineering from Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI). I’m a licensed professional engineer in Massachusetts and Kansas (in the past I was also licensed in four other states). I worked in engineering consulting firms on diverse public works and land development projects in several states; part of this overlapped with my graduate studies in which I took evening classes. After relocating to Kansas with my wife, I worked for Kansas Department of Health & Environment (KDHE) regulating municipal wastewater facilities, and later, solid waste landfills. Following that I was assistant chief engineer for the Kansas Department of Agriculture’s Division of Water Resources, which regulates water rights, dams and other water structures, and interstate water compacts. This broad experience provided a good background for my current position as deputy director of Design & Construction Management at KU, where I assist in managing a staff of 50, an operating budget of $4 million, and capital improvements budget over $100 million.

What do you see as the 3 biggest hurdles that FMs face in the next 5 years?

In our case, I think our top challenges continue to include funding for deferred maintenance needs, streamlining processes, and improving data management. A lot of progress is occurring in these areas and much more is planned. KU invested in VFA.facility software and facility condition assessments to build more robust data on deferred maintenance needs and prioritization methods. We razed two small buildings in poor condition last year, and we’re developing additional revenue streams to address deferred maintenance and modernization of buildings. Recognizing that whole-building renovations are often more cost-effective than numerous piecemeal projects – though with a higher up-front cost – we’re taking steps to utilize that approach more frequently, where practicable. With regard to streamlining processes, KU increasingly utilizes university procurement and on-call contracts to save time and expenses involved with state procurement processes. We’ve increased office automation where possible with database-initiated reminders, letters, and customer satisfaction surveys. We’re exploring additional opportunities for trimming code review times and further facilitating timely inspections. On data management, KU continues transitioning to Maximo for enterprise asset management and we expect to integrate VFA.facility and other systems with that as appropriate. We’re also increasing use of BIM and GIS for the various benefits they bring to O&M, planning capital improvements, etc.

Hear more from Paul Graves as he leads a live webinar on Wednesday, October 29.

How to Align Your Buildings and Infrastructure with the Goals of Your Organization
A Case Study by The University of Kansas

Wednesday, October 29, 2 PM EST – Register now!

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