Intelligent Planning for Smart Premises Installations

The primary rule for smart building technology: make sure it works

Businesses love the idea of smart premises, the notion of using advanced technologies that are integrated into a building using sensors, connectivity, and applications to increase productivity, improve efficiency, lower costs, and streamline cumbersome workflows and entire processes. Smart premises can include offices, factories, schools, warehouses, farms — even airports and seaports — or other facilities where employees congregate to get things done.

The promise of smart premises is an attractive one, especially to those who appreciates these compelling business features. But realistically, leveraging these benefits almost always hinges on a critical, yet often underestimated, factor — the correct installation of the underlying infrastructure. A smart building is simply the framework for all types of interconnected devices and services. The performance is dependent on the correct installation of the network infrastructure, devices, and system hardware that transform smart premises from concepts to realities.

As businesses become increasingly interested in smart premises systems and applications (and rightly focus on the functions and services they want to bring into their operations), companies should also be deliberate in how they manage the deployment process. Essential communications, energy management, security, IoT, and operations management systems are complicated technologies which have their own unique behaviors and nuances. It takes deep expertise to make sure they are properly deployed, and even more experience to ensure that they are integrated in an appropriate manner, on time and on budget.

Enterprises in a hurry to use innovative technology often do themselves a disservice by only focusing on the products and services, but not the integration. If proper attention hasn’t been paid to exactly how the elements come together, all the expense, time, and planning will be for naught. While it would be wonderful if simply purchasing technology also guaranteed its proper deployment, this is rarely reality. Ideally, decisions about what is being acquired, how and where it will be installed or integrated into the overall infrastructure of the project, and who will be responsible after the design stage are important questions that should be answered before a single tool is lifted.

Meticulous planning is always fundamental to proper implementation, and the key to a project’s ultimate success. This goes beyond changing out a cable or a router. The right professional will understand the specific needs and goals that the technology should address, and intuitively know how to structure each of the elements — power, data, HVAC, lighting, and security, for instance — so they can coalesce into a single smart premises implementation that provides all the benefits and efficiencies that customers expect. Wired and wireless networks, sensors, security access controls, video, and AI-driven applications all require a secure, robust infrastructure that must be properly configured and installed.

There is little doubt that businesses of all types are looking to bring smart premise-centric solutions into their operations. As this interest continues to gain momentum, it becomes clear that the importance of expert installation and implementation is the linchpin that ensures the completion of a successful project. Business owners and managers should pay close attention to the installation process — particularly who is doing it, their credentials, and the processes they use. By working with an experienced team that is seasoned and knowledgeable, the headaches associated with a poor installation are negated, and businesses can quickly leverage the tools and applications they have invested in.