The Leading News & Information Service For The Facilities, Workplace & Built Environment Community

Managing Breakdowns in Buildings With Virtual Engineers

Managing Breakdowns in Buildings With Virtual Engineers
19 October 2021
 

Managing mechanical failures in commercial buildings could be made easier for facilities managers by using a virtual engineer.

To help FMs manage automatic door breakdowns, Strand Technologies has launched a virtual solution that could prove just as effective as having a full-time engineer on site.

At the touch of a button, Strand Technologies' Virtual Engineer (VE) could identify the problem and apply a fix in a matter of minutes.

 

"We expect automatic doors to work flawlessly and the majority of those installed in the UK do, but commonly, user behaviour - including abuse and misuse along with environmental conditions such as rain, wind and even sunshine - can affect their performance.​ In some situations, this can result in time-critical breakdowns which compromise safety, security and accessibility and can prevent the business operation from continuing - at great expense and inconvenience.”

–Simon Bowden

Sales and Business Development Director, Strand Technologies

 

What is Virtual Engineer?

 

Helping facilities managers to maintain service-level agreements with their clients, VE is a software solution for the control and diagnostics of automatic doors, gates and barriers. It is an online gateway that can be used on-site or remotely to alert and identify a problem and allow the user to overcome common problems.

The dashboard, which has been devised specifically for the management of entrances, links to Strand Technologies’ iContact product range. Virtual Engineer offers two gateway user levels – one for non-technical staff who have immediate responsibility for looking after the site and another, more detailed interface for estates and facilities managers which provides greater technical detail and remote management capability.

This latter option includes a dynamic overview to enable remote control of a specific set of doors or a group of entrances that link into the system – be they on one site or across a wider geographical area.

Virtual Engineer also encompasses a unique "AssistME" function. This is a press button facility that is located by the monitored asset and activated by the end-user. Once activated, an immediate alert is sent to the site manager and or the service provider to advise that the door/gate or barrier is not functioning effectively and that it is preventing access or exit.

VE dashboard enables fast and simple troubleshooting for the entire service team with 24/7, 365 day instant remote diagnostics and control. It can be accessed by any computer or mobile device and linked to specific emails to flag alerts.

The benefits of using Strand Technologies system to manage automatic doors include:

  • Accurate remote diagnostics, saving time and money for both customer and service provider 
  • Reduced carbon footprint by eliminating unnecessary visits to site
  • Increased “first-time fix” percentage via accurate remote diagnostics 
  • Improved customer/service provider relationship
  • Better efficiency - promoting excellent asset management 
  • Increased contract renewal potential through responsive and immediate action

 

Touchless Technology for COVID-Safety

 

With contactless technology that reduces unnecessary touchpoints forming the cornerstone of many COVID-safe measures in buildings, properly functioning automatic doors are now much more than an accessibility aid. It can be argued that such technology is helping to curb the spread of coronavirus in buildings with heavy footfall.

Simon Bowden, Sales and Business Development Director for Strand Technologies, said that Virtual Engineer had been developed specifically for the doors and entrances market:

“iContact is a device that can be used to monitor and manage any electro-mechanical equipment linked to a user gateway. With our vast experience in the doors and entrances sector, we immediately recognised the time and cost-saving potential it could provide when applied to automatics,” he said.

“This led us to develop a very specific user gateway for this purpose, which is how we arrived at Virtual Engineer. We have made this easy-to-use for people working on-site or remotely who oversee access with a more sophisticated interface for greater levels of control for buildings and facilities managers.

 

Image

Picture: a photograph of a computer screen and smartphone showing the virtual engineer interface 

 

"iContact is a discreet device which is fitted to the entrance and ‘talks’ to the Virtual Engineer system to alert and identify problems."

Simon added: “We expect automatic doors to work flawlessly and the majority of those installed in the UK do, but commonly, user behaviour - including abuse and misuse along with environmental conditions such as rain, wind and even sunshine - can affect their performance.​

“In some situations, this can result in time-critical breakdowns which compromise safety, security and accessibility and can prevent the business operation from continuing - at great expense and inconvenience.”

For more information on Virtual Engineer or Strand Technologies other products contact: info@strandtech.co.uk  or visit: https://www.strandtech.co.uk

Picture: a photograph of Simon Bowden

Article written by Ella Tansley | Published 19 October 2021

Share



Related Articles

Finland’s Nokia Arena Reveals Touchless Security Technology

Europe’s newest multi-purpose arena, Nokia Arena, demonstrates some of the most modern access management technology. In the arena, doors are opened touchlessly...

 Read Full Article
MGS Enrols First Automatic Door Engineer Apprentices

MGS has appointed two apprentices through the new Apprenticeship Standard “Powered Pedestrian Door Installer and Servicer.”  MGS, a UK-based aluminium...

 Read Full Article
9/10 Real Estate Professionals Will Use Virtual Tours by 2024

A recent research report suggests that computer vision and augmented reality will be widely adopted across the commercial real estate sector in the next two years. The...

 Read Full Article
NMITE Launches BSc Sustainable Built Environment Degree

Hereford’s New Model Institute for Technology and Engineering has launched a first-of-its-kind degree focused on the sustainable built environment. Coinciding...

 Read Full Article
The Future of Washroom Technology – Q&A With Dr Salomé Giao | Dyson

Sustainability and hygiene are key considerations for businesses looking to keep their public washrooms clean and welcoming for users. Dr Salomé Giao, Lead...

 Read Full Article
Spotlight Interview – David Stevens | CIBSE Facilities Management Group

David Stevens is the Vice Chair of the CIBSE Facilities Management Group, and Director of Estates, Facilities & Capital Development at East London NHS Foundation...

 Read Full Article
Construction Careers Attracting Young Interest

New research from construction data platform NBS reveals that construction has now become a desirable career path for UK school leavers and young adults, with 56 per cent...

 Read Full Article
International Women in Engineering Day 2022

On the ninth year of International Women in Engineering Day, engineers from Waterman Group and Alinea Consulting share their career stories. Created by the Women's...

 Read Full Article
BESA Supports CIBSE's Pledge to Inspire New Generation of Engineers

The building services industry has been urged to rally behind new CIBSE President Kevin Mitchell’s campaign to inspire a new generation of engineers. Kevin, in...

 Read Full Article
Development and Technical Engineers in High Demand Across UK

Several engineering professions are experiencing significant shortages in the UK, particularly within the design and development sector. Research from the beginning of...

 Read Full Article