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How GIS Can Help Organizations Manage Facilities

On April 18, GovLoop and Esri held a meetup for GIS professionals to learn how to extend the value of GIS investments by leveraging facilities management data. Facilities data is a growing trend within the GIS community. One of the biggest costs for any organization is asset and facilities management. With proper facilities management, organizations can reduce costs and manage space efficiently. Yet, in order to effectively manage facilities, organizations need to understand important data points around where offices, vehicles, property, people, pipelines, desks, computers and even where power outlets are located. This information can lead to improved decision-making and allow the public sector to make smarter data-driven decisions.

Post Highlights

  • Be sure to view GovLoop's recent interview with Esri President Jack Dangermond
  • Event highlighted how GIS has been used to help manage the lifecycle of facilities
  • Event featured 3 GIS experts identifying the value of GIS for facilities management

The meetup featured speaker, Stu Rich the CTO of PenBay Solutions, who described how CAD and BIM are being integrated into GIS solutions for space and occupancy, asset location, work management, and public safety in the public sector.

Stu Rich reminded us that facilities are a huge investment, and that we spend 85% of our time in an indoor environment. “Facilities information systems need to understand your entire portfolio, because that’s the scale of the business problem you’re operating in,” Rich stated. Rich believed that GIS should be a cornerstone of facilities information strategy. One example that Rich provided was from Perth University in Australia.

The second session was a presentation by Craig Clevland, Solution Engineer, Esri, on how to use 3D tools and app templates to maintain buildings and interior spaces found on a campus or facility grounds. The presentation by Craig was geared towards educated ArcGIS users about the available templates and resources available for facilities management. One template in particular highlighted was the “Campus Place Finder.” Craig provided a demonstration on how easy it is to use the template to locate people on a campus, find an office, move between floors, and use the information for space and occupancy planning. The Campus Place Finder template allows organizations to know how much space is available across the entire facility, and makes information easily accessible to users – not just programmers or traditional GIS users.

The final presentation by Thom Oaks, titled, Tools for a Better Understanding: Metrics about your Facilities. This presentation provided insights on how GIS users can gain insights on issues such as space availability, energy use and other key performance indicators. The use of 3D GIS allows decision makers to highlight new insights and improve decision-making. Cleveland provided insights as to how NASA used Esri CityEngine to plan their NASA campus in Virginia.

During the presentations, some of the ways that GIS can be used for facilities management are:

  1. Space Utilization
  2. Asset Management
  3. Compliance
  4. Management of property
  5. Environmental impact
  6. Emergency Response

Overall, this was a fascinating event exploring how GIS can be used for facilities management. If you are interested in more GIS resources, be sure to visit GovLoop's GIS resources:


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When 
Esri was founded in 1969, it realized even then that geographic information system (GIS) technology could make a difference in society. GIS helps people to solve problems at local, regional, national, and global scales. Access maps and apps at ArcGIS.com. Be sure to check out all the
 GIS resources produced by Esri and GovLoop.

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