Everything ages – even the very best buildings, utilities and infrastructure. Unaddressed, this process results in declining performance and reliability over the years, as well as increasing costs due to servicing & repair time, and issues with local compliance requirements. This is why any roadmap for optimizing your facility’s TCO (total cost of ownership) should factor in technical projects & upgrades, a critical aspect of facility and technical asset management which ensures that buildings, equipment and infrastructure are systemically maintained and improved with the aim of cost optimization and least disruption to business continuity. In this article, we will delve into what Technical Projects & Upgrades really means, and why it makes sense to work with a partner who integrates OEM and operations at your site.
What are Technical Projects & Upgrades, exactly?
These are projects that are conducted on a fixed timeline, and which generally involve upgrading or replacing key equipment, utilities, and energy-consuming infrastructure at your site. Can we pinpoint one project as the “typical case”? Not really, because Technical Projects & Upgrades encompass so many use cases (some examples are given below). That said, Technical Projects & Upgrades usually have these common features:
- They involve technical equipment related to energy, utilities (e.g. water and water treatment), air, or gas.
- They occur on a well-planned timeline, with have a defined start and end point.
- They require the mobilization of different vendors and suppliers, with the project management/coordination aspect of the job handled by a partner.
- The end outcome will be better facility performance, improved reliability of operations, better HSE (health, safety, and environment), and better environmental compliance in the area where your site is located.
These projects & upgrades are carried out for a variety of reasons. In some cases, the client is being pushed by new environmental or emissions regulation; in other cases, the client may be meeting ESG standards or targets coming from Global HQ. Some clients simply recognize the financial and productivity value in upgrading the right equipment at the right time.
What are some examples of Technical Projects & Upgrades from real life?
There are countless possibilities when it comes to these projects, but some examples from past projects we have conducted at Aden include:
- Upgrading a site’s outdated HVAC system to one with better energy consumption, sensors, and infrastructure for automation of site air conditioning.
- A campaign to upgrade lighting throughout a large food and beverage plant, making it more energy efficient and compliant with local regulations.
- Projects to replace all HVAC filters in a building or a specific set of rooms.
- One client at a large manufacturing plant was notified by the government that their industrial water treatment unit was not compliant with current regulations, and they needed to take action quickly. They engaged with Aden’s Technical Asset Management (TAM) team to deliver and install a new water treatment unit and set it up with ongoing monitoring via the Akila digital twin platform.
Why work with a partner for Technical Projects & Upgrades?
By nature, Technical Projects & Upgrades are complex and time-consuming, with a great deal of project management involved. Handling all the procurement, contracts and execution can be done in-house, but will absolutely divert resources and slow down your in-house team. For this reason, many companies are opting to work with a strategic partner who can handle the complexity of these campaigns. A partner should not only be able to handle all the project management needs of the OEM campaign, but also have operational expertise and knowledge of your site or sites. This way, the project can be carried out faster and with more detail, while minimizing disruptions to business continuity.
How can Aden Group help?
Aden is a strong player in facility operations with dedicated teams for IFM (Integrated Facility Management), Technical Asset Management, and Energy. These teams provide the foundation of facility knowledge and understanding of site workflow and needs while setting up and executing your project. The major advantages of working with Aden include:
- Onsite presence: We are already onsite for ongoing operations through TAM, IFM and energy, so we have a deeper understanding of the real operational situation at the facility. We document everything that will happen in the project, including the floor plan, flow of work, equipment, and assets. This information allows us to plan the project to minimize disruption to business and maximize business continuity.
- Vendor Management: Having someone to lead vendor selection, negotiation, planning, and execution can be a significant time-saver for companies. By handling this on our client’s behalf, they can focus on their core business.
- Financial Leverage and Validation of Partners: As a large group, we work with a wide range of trusted partners and proven vendors. We can complete these projects at scale, with better negotiating and purchasing power, which would be very challenging if done alone by a single building manager.
- Financing and Capex Coverage: Especially when new assets will be procured and installed, the upfront investment cost may set off alarm bells with your finance department. If desired, Aden is able to facilitate the capex investment on behalf of our partners.