NYC Metro Area’s HVACR Blog

Air Time with Scott Berger, Commercial HVAC

Facilities Managers: Are you Top Dog or in the Dog House?

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AIRTIME WITH SCOTT BERGER

Here at Arista, we’ve been working alongside New York City’s facilities managers for decades, and we know that it can be a thankless job. Doesn’t it seem like nobody notices what you do until there’s a problem? In spite of the fact that you never have enough staff, things run like clockwork due to all the hard work and extra hours you put in. Then one piece of equipment unexpectedly breaks down and suddenly you’re in the doghouse.

Over the years, I’ve seen that the job of facilities manager continues to demand more time and expertise. In addition to responsibility for your building’s power, lighting and mechanical systems, you’re managing cleaning, maintenance and even landscaping. Every new workplace initiative seems to get added to your job description, from increasing security to energy-efficient operation. And the economic downturn has demanded that you keep everything running smoothly with fewer resources. With all the balls you have in the air at any given moment, I’m sure you can’t help worrying about the consequences if any of them are dropped.

You probably feel like you have the weight of the world on your shoulders. But you don’t have to carry it alone. Even if you can’t hire additional staff to help you get it all done, there are resources you can turn to that you may not have considered: the companies (like Arista) that service your facility’s equipment.

How service vendors can help you carry the load

Think about it this way: we as your service partners have a vested interest in the smooth running of your facility, and even in your personal reputation. When equipment works as promised without breakdowns, our service contracts are more likely to be renewed. When we can help you anticipate and plan for equipment obsolescence and improvements, we are almost certain to get the contract. On the other hand, if things go so badly that you get replaced, it’s fairly likely that we will be replaced as well.

Our goals are aligned with yours. By helping you succeed, we succeed. The right service vendors can help you keep things running like clockwork and look like a star in the process.

When you build a strong, long-term relationship with a service provider like Arista, we understand how you operate. We can help implement solutions that save you time and money, and over time we can anticipate your needs and prevent problems.

Better communication saves time

One way that a quality service provider can help you improve efficiency is by using the latest technology to improve communication. This strategy is especially beneficial for businesses with multiple locations. Here’s an example: Arista implemented an electronic work order system for B R Guest, a restaurant group with 17 locations in New York City, that streamlined communication and saved a great deal of time for the facilities manager and staff.

First, we developed a maintenance calendar that provided the details of each planned service visit to each location, including which technician was assigned, the date and time of the visit, and exactly what tasks would be completed during each service call. Then we used mobile technology to send work orders by email directly to the facilities people at each location. Not only did we avoid many unnecessary phone calls for all parties, but the facilities manager and the staff at the restaurants knew that the maintenance was taken care of, and they could focus their time and energy on other tasks.

Better planning saves money

In addition to streamlining maintenance operations, your service company can help you anticipate and plan for equipment purchases. When your provider is intimately familiar with your equipment, its usage and service history, we can assist with planning for needed upgrades and budgeting.

I recommend that you ask your service providers to perform yearly assessments of the condition and probable life span of your equipment, and recommend what will need to be replaced. When we understand your capital budget requirements, we can help you prioritize your needs over the short and long term.

This careful planning saves money by preventing equipment failures that cause business interruptions. When you’re not reacting to an emergency breakdown, you can also make better and often less costly purchase decisions.

We’re all on the same team

It’s all about using the value chain. You and your service providers are a team of resources that should be working together to meet the demands of your organization’s infrastructure.

If you’re overworked and under-appreciated, you have two options: continue to shoulder the burden and hope things improve, or surround yourself with partners who can help you juggle all those balls with ease and exceed the expectations of your superiors. The choice is yours.

If you’re interested in building a relationship with an experienced NYC HVAC provider, and want to learn more about choosing the right preventative maintenance contract for your needs, grab a free copy of our helpful guide to HVAC Preventative Maintenance Contracts: How to Find the Right One for Your Infrastructure.


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