PFM 21 5 Jul 2018 - Page 11



NEWS
news
it isn’t needed – a real-world example of
technology delivering cost savings.
As conditions become more extreme this
level of flexibility really proves its value.
Indeed, the incredibly harsh winter we
have just experienced was an important
test for our own investments in
technology, and the ability to manage
and automate the operational aspects
of scheduling and communication
enabled us to continue to deliver a very
efficient and effective service even when
demand soared. As climate change
forces more unpredictable weather
events, the agility provided by
technology will matter more and more.
These
considerations
are
also
supporting investments in the Internet of
Things. For example, GRITIT is
developing a next generation service
that uses sensors to provide a live feed
of actual road surface temperatures for
even better accuracy. In safety critical
contexts, we also see a clear role for
robotics and are developing and piloting
self-driving Winter Gritting machines that
can work to support and enhance the
productivity of human operators.
through desktop software or on the move
via smartphone apps. This also
simplifies tracking delivery against
agreed service levels.
This sort of data could prove to be a
micro-manager’s paradise but if used
appropriately, automated reporting can
help cut out middlemen and actually
empower your operatives. Indeed, with
grounds
maintenance
we
see
technology as being the key to helping
our clients place more trust in teams on
the ground so they can build better
relationships
and
work
more
collaboratively.
In winter maintenance, accountability
also goes hand in hand with risk
management. For example, employers
have a Duty of Care to provide a safe
working environment and to document
the reasonable steps taken to ensure
this. With snow and ice clearance,
technology has made it possible to build
in this requirement for evidence at every
stage – from vehicle tracking to logging
service delivery by scanning onsite QR
codes.
Keeping it human centric
The use of technology can solve the
productivity conundrum. It is already
reducing needless labour through datadriven decision making and service
delivery and cutting down on admin to
track and monitor deliverables. Just like
in manufacturing, robotics will soon be
used a force multiplier to let fewer
employees achieve more when working
on site. Ultimately, technology will prove
invaluable in delivering productivity
gains across FM, but only where care is
taken to build services that closely align
to human needs.
For more info on managing your grounds
call GRITIT on 0800 0432 911 or visit
www.gritit.com
Reader Reply: 215006
Enhancing visibility
Across FM, technology can help to
increasing accountability and this is true
in both winter maintenance and
landscaping. Our teams use PDAs to log
activity in real time, which makes
reporting and tracking activity simpler –
cutting admin rather than adding layers
of extra work. This adds value to
managers or clients – particularly those
managing multiple properties – as they
can draw on the information they need
more quickly and conveniently, whether
11

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