For those who don’t know, facility managers are by and large, the men and women who are responsible for keeping equipment up and running and keeping costs down. In short — they make a building work. While technology can make all of our lives easier, it can also make things more difficult. Facility managers have experience with this first-hand.
Jim McCarthy, Chief Technology Officer at Vixxo, illustrated how technology can raise their job expectations. “Well, first and foremost, the facilities manager's job isn't getting any easier, right?” McCarthy said. He used gas stations as an example, as some of his customers are in the convenience gas station space. 25 years ago, if you went to a gas station there may have been a rack refrigeration unit with some cold beverages. You might have a microwave to heat up a burrito or a simple setup like that, but technology and advancements have taken that simple arrangement and stepped it up a notch. “Now today, you walk into some of these big, mega complex gas stations. It's a quick service restaurant, so they're dealing with ovens. They're dealing with soda fountains, they're dealing with espresso machines, ice cream machines, you name it, it's in these convenience stores. So the mere fact of a facilities manager in that space from 25 years ago to today, it's completely changed,” McCarthy explained.
Now that gas stations are also mini restaurants and convenience stores, the complexity of managing a facility increased in part because of the type of equipment required. “Now you take on the complexity of each piece of equipment, you can't just have an HVAC tech on staff, and a fuel guy on staff and fix all your problems in your store. Now you need an oven specialist, you need the espresso guy, you need the soda fountain guy, you need the ice machine guy, you're gonna need all that. Those are problems that they're facing today,” McCarthy said.