COVID-19 in 1.9 Minutes: the nine stages of how to track coronavirus in Archibus.

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The Workplace Maven Alliance (WMA) is excited to be starting our new Knowledge Series, “COVID-19 in 1.9 Minutes”. Today’s article is an introduction to the series and will give the audience the following:

  1. A broad overview of the content that will be covered.
  2. How the WMA has broken up the coronavirus into three main stages and nine steps within that.
  3. A quick description of each stage, each step, it’s Archibus application, and why that application is beneficial to a company.

Our purpose in this series is to demonstrate how Archibus is the only IWMS that can comprehensively track every stage and step in the process of responding and recovering to a coronavirus incident in any organization. Because of its well-established customization capabilities, it can mold to any need an organization may have. This allows it to be the IWMS that can answer that can track any and all stages of a health and safety incident, no matter how an organization decides to split up the stages.

We’ve decided to split up coronavirus reporting, responding, and returning stages into nine steps that we think every company will experience when preventing exposure to the virus. Every solution in the steps discussed can be accomplished with a standard, out-of-the-box, no-customization-required Archibus license.

An infographic of the nine stages most companies experience when encountering a COVID-19 related incident or taking preventive action against COVID-19.
The nine stages, according to the WMA, that a company may experience when encountering a COVID-19-related incident.

Report.

The steps in this stage are the steps taken in the initial phase of being exposed to coronavirus, or taking preventive action to stop its spread.

1. Report the incident with Environmental Health and Safety.

Let’s say that someone in an organization starts showing symptoms of the coronavirus during the workday. What is the organization’s health and safety management plan? Is there one in place, or does one need to be created? How are all stakeholders in the incident going to be notified of the response protocol so every safety step is executed?

Archibus Environmental Health and Safety allows incident management personnel to answer these questions, relay necessary safety information, and inform all stakeholders as quickly as possible upon reporting an incident. The application allows staff to create a report and fill in basic and granular information about the incident:

  • where and when it took place
  • any assets that were involved or affected
  • the type of incident (in this case coronavirus)
  • who was affected by the incident
  • who responded to the incident
  • what the response was
  • medical information and tracking
  • employee training for future incidents of this type

The strength of Archibus Environmental Health and Safety in this step is integration and connectivity; the software will pull in existing data—such as employee and location data, asset information, work order management, and more—to make the reporting process faster, easier, and more accessible to essential, key players.

What’s more, this application is currently free. Visit the landing page for more details, and talk to your Archibus provider to learn how to implement.

A quick overview of Archibus Environmental Health and Safety and how it can help organizations report health and safety incidents.

2. Disinfect the premises with Building Operations.

Once an incident has been reported, immediate action needs to be taken to take care of any consequences from the incident—in the case of COVID-19, a thorough disinfection of any affected areas.

Archibus Building Operations provides comprehensive capabilities for properly responding to incidents instantaneously. Using this application allows users to complete actions such as:

  • Automatically generating a work request to clean the area.
  • Sending a work request through the proper Service Level Agreement (SLA) to either speed up the completion process or guarantee that it gets the proper permissions.
  • Responsive/mobile functionalities for instant update on work order status, records, schedules, and more.
  • Creating location-based preventive maintenance schedules and procedures so that a location is cleaned and disinfected regularly, meeting any organizational or governmental requirements.
  • Keeping a record of cleanings and maintenance procedures for inspections.

Leveraging the cause code within a work request allows users to quickly indicate whether a work request is related to a COVID incident without having to write a detailed description of such. We highly recommend this feature because it reports can be generated from this data, allowing an organization to understand how many incidents have occurred that are related to COVID-19.

A feature that we have found sometimes gets under-utilized is the reference documents. This can be used to provide a standardized process for carrying out work orders, such as disinfecting and cleaning, so quality is maintained, and health and safety can be certain.

A quick overview of Archibus Building Operations and how it can help organizations respond quickly to incidents with automatically generated work requests.

Respond.

This stage involves the steps that allow an organization to take appropriate measures in keeping their employees safe and healthy.

3. Track remote employees with Emergency Preparedness.

Archibus Emergency Preparedness provides users with features to take appropriate preventive action, whether or not an incident has recently occurred. Pertaining to the COVID pandemic, some use cases we’ve found that Archibus excels at are:

  • Tracking an employee’s previous location in the workplace and whether they are assigned to work from home.
  • Using bulletins to notify when a building has returned to usability.
  • Determining who has evacuated and who hasn’t, should an evacuation, whether gradual or immediate, be necessary.
A quick overview of Archibus Emergency Preparedness and how it can help organizations execute preventive action plans.

4. Deliver employee assets with Enterprise Asset Management.

Archibus Asset Management tracks how many assets an organization has, in what condition they are, where they are located, who uses them, and much more. In the context of the coronavirus, this application can be a game-changer by:

  • Ensuring that remote employees have a complete and ergonomic setup in their at-home offices.
  • Whether your organization already has the equipment needed to supply at-home work spaces.
  • Understanding space utilization for future reporting.

Space utilization can come into play here, as it is connected to the asset and employee that is being tracked.

A quick overview of Archibus Enterprise Asset Management and how it can help organizations provide on-site and remote employees with ergonomics assets, access to websites, hardware, software, and more.

5. Survey for compliance with Compliance Management.

The next application, Archibus Compliance Management complements Asset Management extremely well in the context of COVID-19. Compliance Management can help users determine and maintain employee health and safety while they are working from home.

The application uses surveys to take the assumption out of determining whether remote employees have access to necessary equipment, such as:

  • Software
  • Hardware
  • Ergonomic chairs, desks, stands, keyboards, mice, etc.
  • Access to necessary servers, websites, and other remote locations.

Users can also send instructions to remote employees to ensure that they are taking care of themselves, such as:

  • Taking proper breaks.
  • Drinking enough water.
  • What type of ergonomic equipment they should invest in and why.
  • Virtual meeting tips, equipment, and software.

Surveys are extremely flexible. Users can customize all questions, response types, documents and instructions within a survey, as well as the geographic locations that will receive it or affiliation with a specific organization, should this be necessary. Senders can then view summary reports to understand how certain questions were answered, giving greater insight into an organization.

A quick overview of Archibus Compliance Management and how it can help organizations, through surveys, understand better the needs of their workforce, staff, and employees.

Return.

The following steps will aid an organization in executing their recovery plan so everyone can return to full productivity, whether that be with a restack of all facilities and a larger percentage of staff working from home than before, or a complete return to the original setup before COVID-19.

6. Redesign your space with Strategic Space Planning.

Much discussion has revolved around the fact that the new “normal” in the workplace may be slightly different from what employees are used to. Organizations may want to continue to practice social distancing, which requires floorplate restacking. Many organizations have also found that, not only does having remote workers cut down immensely on costs, but that their staff are just as effective when working from home, oftentimes more so.

Archibus Strategic Space Planning offers scenario planning which allows users to create floorplan schemas in AutoCAD without changing or editing the existing floorplate. Common changes organizations make include:

  • modified furniture
  • tenant improvements
  • rearranged furniture
  • reassignment of spaces between divisions, departments, etc.

Strategic Space Planning excels at:

  • Identifying space requirements by:
    • number of people
    • total area
    • types of rooms
  • Automatically running scenarios based on specific requirements, like the ones above, allowing organizations to maintain portfolio requirements for the next three-to-five years.
  • Analyzing a portfolio and determining the types of space an organization owns, which are being completely used, and which have space to use. For example, let’s say an organization owns a space that is a warehouse for two months out of the year, but is left empty the other 10 months. Can an organization leverage that space, cut costs, and even save money?

In our experience, the Archibus Space Planning and Management module can play a large role in this step because it tracks things like occupancy, allocation, and chargeback, which are key factors when redesigning and restacking your space. This encompasses about 80% of the requirements of going back to work.

A quick overview of Archibus Space Management and Strategic Space Planning and how these applications can help organizations restack their space to comply with social distancing.

7. Reduce footprint with Portfolio Management.

Real estate is usually the second biggest expense for an organization. How does an organization reduce its portfolio for cost savings while restacking floorplans to maintain social distancing? Archibus Portfolio Management gives an organization a detailed view into their real estate portfolio so strategic, cost-saving decisions can be made. Hand-in-hand with Strategic Space Planning, these two applications can help organizations determine exactly where they can save money by re-using or re-organizing space, leasing or subleasing space, buildings, and campuses, and much more. Some features that the application provides are:

  • Global Portfolio dashboard, which will summarize portfolio and lease costs by geographic location, types of space (such as office, warehouse, manufacturing, etc.
  • Cost Reporting, which will summarize and predict how much money an organization spends on real estate so they can forecast the next three to five years and achieve financial and space goals together.
  • Create custom metrics within Archibus to build what-if scenarios.
  • Use category and type to understand how you can reduce your area footprint, sublease, sell, reconfigure, or repurpose.
A quick overview of Archibus Portfolio Management and how it can help organizations understand their real estate portfolio, where to reduce, where to expand, and how to save money.

8. Manage change with Project Management.

Archibus Project Management allows organizations to organize and execute the space planning and portfolio projects discussed above: restacking and repurposing space, changing floorplates, and moving divisions, departments, and business units for cost effectiveness. Project Management allows users to:

  • set up bid packages
  • send bid packages to contractors
  • track the bid
  • select a bidder
  • track project progress with Gantt charts

This application shares information with Archibus Capital Budgeting. All the information for the basic steps of a project—identifying a project, detailed analysis, building out tasks, milestones, determining a team, initial baseline costs, and design costs—can be linked back to the capital budget. The application will then help managers determine what tasks need to be addressed first, the budget for each task, and where any remaining budget can be allocated.

Condition Assessment projects can also be bundled up in the same process above in Project Management, run through Capital Budgeting to define cost parameters, and then executed and finalized in Project Management.

Archibus Environmental Sustainability Assessment and Archibus Clean Building also integrate well with this application to help organizations manage any COVID-19 related building projects by project priority and cost.

AutoDesk has released many applications and plugins that complement this application well. Talk to your Archibus provider for more information about this.

A quick overview of Archibus Project Management and how it can help organizations manage their space planning and restacking projects as their workforce returns to the workplace.

9. Re-occupy your space with Enterprise Move Management.

Provides flexible solutions for returning to the workplace and maintaining social distancing; for example, instead of completely restacking a floorplate, an organization could decide to have every third desk enter the workplace on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, rotating employees on those days until the pandemic is resolved.

Other phase approaches are possible and limitless. Many organizations have discussed the idea of only having 25% or 50% of their on-site workforce returning to the office space.

Archibus Enterprise Move Management makes this phase approach effortless by:

  • Creating flexibility by allowing the user to manage single and group moves.
  • Recording moves and changes through tickets.
  • Scheduling moves by generating work order tickets.
  • Coordinating all involved groups in the move process.
  • Mobile/responsive functionality for verifying staff’s assigned locations.

Archibus Reservations can add functionality by allowing users to create windows linked to work orders between moves and room usage for routine disinfecting to take place.

Archibus Hoteling will also let users stagger hotel space usage; for example some hotel spaces, spaced out for social distancing, could only be available during Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, while others could be available Tuesday and Thursday to allow a disinfection period.

Returning to the Strategic Space Planning step we discussed above, the scenarios created in the Space Planning application can be migrated into a Move Management project. One click of a button will make this scenario into a move project, saving users time, money, and energy.

A quick overview of Archibus Enterprise Move Management and how it can help organizations create, manage, execute, and complete single and group moves.

Get to know the Workplace Maven Alliance.

The WMA collectively has 150 years of experience in Archibus, AutoCAD,  IWMS, and CAFM solutions. We are a group of certified Archibus business  partners who are committed to finding the best solution for our clients. Formed in April of 2020, the alliance consists of:


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RSC’s Guide to Hoteling

With the increased popularity of telecommuting and working remotely, it’s no wonder hoteling has become so popular. But what is hoteling exactly?

Hoteling is a method of space management where employees schedule the use of their work environment (e.g., desks, cubicles, and offices) rather than having a singular assigned location.
Think of it the same way you think of booking your hotel stay on vacation.  Ather than the traditional method of permanently-assigned seating, employees reserve a desk or workspace based on availablility for the specific days they plan to be in the office.

It’s beneficial for a number of reasons.

  1. Reduces Carbon Footprint
  2. Saves cost on commercial real estate
  3. Allows for Flexible Work Arrangements
  4. Promotes Space Efficiency
  5. Promotes creative work environment

In some ways, the practice of hoteling itself has caused a shift in employee mobility. It has allowed employees to more comfortably work when they travel frequently or work remotely.

“With the help of Hoteling, organizations can quickly find and book the required number of rooms for specific time periods and at desired locations, thus optimizing space utilization and fostering productivity for visiting employees, contractors, teleworkers, or temporary project-based teams.

At many organizations, office space is frequently underutilized by 50% or more, resulting in a larger than necessary real estate and carbon footprint, along with their associated costs. Web-based ARCHIBUS Hoteling enables organizations to more fully utilize existing space, potentially reduce leased/owned space in their portfolios, as well as decrease carbon emissions and workspace operating costs. It supports temporary allocation of on-site workspace to dynamic project-based teams and makes implementation of increasingly popular telework initiatives possible. Additionally, Hoteling simplifies implementation of shared space chargebacks, which further encourages space efficiency and responsibility for occupancy costs.”1

RSC has over 10 years of experience helping our clients successfully implement and use the Hotel Scheduling Module in ARCHIBUS. We currently have many clients happily using this tool and would love to help you make the switch!

If you would like to learn more or request a demo on Hoteling, contact info@rsc2lc.com


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Thoughts? Questions? Comment below and let us know what you think! We’d love to hear your insights.