Last Friday we held a Facility Management conference in Iceland. The goal was to talk about the different uses of MainManager in Denmark and Norway. We also wanted to share what we have learnt within Facility Management for the last few years.
This was one of the hottest days until now in the Icelandic summer (around 10 degrees). That did not stop the enthusiastic crowd of Facility Managers from attending our conference. We would like to thank them all, because we know how hard it is for an Icelander to stay inside, when there is sunshine outside : )
After a nice introduction from our CEO Guðrún Rós Jónsdóttir, Gulli B. Hjartarson, the Manager of MainManager Norway, honoured us with the first talk of the day. He told us everything (and more!) about Facility Management and the effects of the digital revolution on Facility Management as an industry. He was followed by our Norwegian based employee Einar, who told us about Statsbygg (The Norwegian Directorate of Public Construction and Property), and how MainManager has become one of the critical systems within their organisation.
THE DANISH MARKET
After a 15 minute break where attendants were able to stretch their legs and consume some fuel in the form of mini burgers, it was time to talk about our Danish market.
Our Danish Branch Manager, Guðmundur, kicked it off by talking about how Danish municipalities are using MainManager, focusing on the Danish municipalitie Slagelse. He then moved on to talking about Region Midt (Central Denmark Region), and how they are using BIM within MainManager. Our Iceland based employee, Þorgerður, then concluded the Danish part of the conference, by talking about Copenhagen University, and how they use MainManager within Space Management.
Our energy specialist in Iceland, Sævar, then proceeded to talk about how MainManager can be used within energy consulting.
SNEAK PEAK TO MAINMANAGERS NEW SOLUTION
Then it was time to give participants the opportunity to stretch their legs again before the last talk of the day. Elísabet, Guðjón and Hilmar gave participants a glimpse into the new version of MainManager that is on its way later this year.
Overall the conference was a big success. We hope that all the participants went home a little wiser about Facility Management as an industry, and with more knowledge on how MainManager can be used to optimize success, within that industry. We noticed that people were very excited about the development of our future MainManager FM version.
This will defenitely not be the last conference MainManager will hold. We are already looking forward to the next one!
STAY IN TOUCH
My name is Hilmar Steinthorsson and I started working with MainManager in 2001. I know I’m a dinosaur : )
In this blogpost I’m going to recap a little bit the history of the MainManager solution. I will also tell you about the exciting work that is going on at the moment. We are working on a brand new interface for the MainManager system. For the past 18 years I’ve taken part in many redesigns and changes to the MainManager system. I have to say though, that the current design we are working on, is the most exciting yet!
MainManager version 10
When I started working at MainManager, the solution was only available as a Windows program. It was accessible through something called terminal server. The web technology was on the rise and the goal for MainManager was to design a 100% web-based solution. That goal was first accomplished in 2010, with the release of version 10. This allowed our customers to work with all their processes on the web for the first time, without the use of a windows program on the side.
MainManager version 11
In 2012 we released version 11 of the MainManager solution. That version contained a newly designed interface implemented with the latest web technologies available at that time. We introduced a new process layout that guided the users through a specific process within MainManager. For the past 7 years we have made small adjustments and additions to this interface. Today our customers are using version 11.14 of the MainManager solution. Version 11 has served our customers well for this time, but is starting to show it’s wear and tear, especially with all the exciting new web technology that has emerged over the past few years. Also, the demands of our customers have changed with new devices available, such as powerful smartphones and tablets. As a result of that we have been working on a complete redesign of the MainManager interface, using all the new technologies available.
MainManager version 11 – Setup of sites process
Facility Management is a big field that contains a lot of complex processes. The challenge when designing a FM solution is to be able to work with all these processes, while keeping it simple and intuitive for the user of the solution. Through the years we have listened to our customers while also comming up with new ideas internally. Therefore, when we started working on the redesign of the MainManager interface, we wrote down some design goals that we would try to accomplish throughout the whole process.
Simplify as much as possible
Even though the subject of Facility Management can be a complex subject, it doesn’t mean that the FM system has to be. In the design of the new interface we have asked the question constantly: “How can we make this as simple as possible for the end user?”. To start with we have broken down the subjects that MainManager offers into independent processes that are predefined and require minimal setup. Each process provides extensive help and guidelines and all relevant settings are readily available. We have kept all the things that make MainManager great, such as extensive filtering possibilities, grouping of data and accessability. In the new interface though, they are presented in a more non intrusive way. If you are not using the feature it does not interfere, but access to it is only one click away.
Responsive design is an approach to web design that makes web pages render well on any device and screen size. In the new design we have used all the latest technologies available, to make every process within the solution usable no matter the device used.
The same module on a big screen and a small screen
In today’s world users are used to have access to information within microseconds. That can be difficult to achieve when dealing with large amounts of data as the MainManager solution does. We have completely redesigned how we present and work with data within the solution using all the latest client side technologies available. All unnecessary refreshes have been removed and in those places that need updating of data asynchronous web service calls are used to enhance the user experience as much as possible.
For the past years it has been possible to use what we call the 3 graphical worlds in MainManager. Those worlds are GIS maps, interactive drawings (2D) and BIM models (3D). It gives the user of a FM system a big advantage to be able to use these graphical worlds within his daily work for viewing information and creating it. The problem within the current solution is that these possibilities are not as visible as they should be and therefore are not used to their full capabilities. In the new interface, we have worked on adding these graphical capabilities to every process, by making them readily available no matter where the user is and no matter what he is doing.
GIS map used to show buildings.
You have the possibility to open up a BIM model directly from the map.
One click setup
Our goal with the new design is to be able to offer a solution that can be up and running within minutes. The biggest hurdle in that is to populate the system with the customers relevant data such as their sites and buildings. Therefore, we have added integrations to the public data services such as Matrikkel in Norway and BBR in Denmark. With just one click the customer can then populate the solution with the data available in these services. All import of data has also been redesigned in a way that the user should always have a way to populate the solution with needed data no matter the data source.
An addition to our new interface, is the possibility for our users to create their own property windows, lists, filters and new fields. This greatly reduces the cost for our customers since these things don‘t have to be programmed any more.
We estimate releasing the new interface for the MainManager system to our customers later this year. We are so looking forward to allowing them to experience a completely new MainManager. Hopefully it will give them the feel of all the hard work and joy that we have poured into it. Until that time I can give you a sneak preview of the new design through this video that shows the Helpdesk process within MainManager.
Stay in touch
Until next time I bid you farewell.
What is BIM?
BIM (Building Information Modeling) is a process for creating and managing all information on a project – before, during and after construction.
There is a common misconception that BIM only means 3D design. It’s much more. With BIM you can simulate in 3D how a building will work, and you can use the tool to check that a building is buildable. BIM is great process of construction, and the output of this process is a digital description of every aspect of the built asset. So, there is some real value after handover, as the owner or facility manager receives a complete and accurate set of information about the project.
The Statsbygg project
Recently Statsbygg Norway entered an exciting pilot project where they use MainManager software, named Sesam in Statsbygg. The goal is to prepare and realize its commitment for a “digital transition” of their building operation, and to utilize BIM throughout the life cycle of their buildings. Both as a navigation tool, but also as key information holder. Statsbygg has already taken a major step in digitalizing its building portfolio and hard FM processes. This includes operation & maintenance processes, procure processes, contract management, energy monitoring & analysis, time registration processes etc. Incorporated in these processes are environmental goals and follow-up for the buildings, tasks, and means to protect cultural buildings and building parts.
Statsbygg started digitalizing some key buildings information and some hard FM processes, some years ago. This was done with the MainManager software and included some of their major tasks such as operating and maintaining their building portfolio which contains about 2800 buildings. This work included creating a Master database for standards operation tasks for over 100 technical systems and building parts. The standard operational tasks ensure fulfillment of national legislation. The Master database also includes many years of accumulated experience, and best practices of preventive maintenance of different technical systems.
The standard operation task for each building part, ready to create an operation plan.
This Master database is a powerful tool for making operational plans for existing and new buildings. The information in each operational task contains the frequency of the task, operational description, checklists etc. One can also add another dimension, so-called “themes” to each operational task (which is a part of the internal control system in Statsbygg), and make a distinction between ordinary operational tasks, fire protections tasks, environmental protection tasks or tasks for cultural value protection. This means that one can isolate and follow these specific disciplines and all tasks and documentation related to fire is accessible in one portal “fire portal” and the same is true for cultural portal and environmental portal.
Along with this Statsbygg has registered all technical systems for their buildings in MainManager along with and room structure. All technical systems that need daily operation are located on a floor and in a room in the MainManager database. By pushing the “play button” the MainManager system reads the technical and building parts system code that has been created in each building, and the Master database info for these building parts. The system then creates the operational plan. The operational planner can adjust the plan afterwards e.g. adjust for local resources, vacation plans, local checklist etc.
Illustration of the traditional information flow in MainManager to create an operational plan. It controls all preventive maintenance task of the building e.g. by creating a work order on a smart device, that gives access to all needed information for the object in question.
The BIM connection to MainManager in the Statsbygg’s pilot
The conceptual leap was to think how to use BIM models to automate this process of setting up the building structure, operational plans, theme portals, space management information’s, as build documentation, energy monitoring setup etc.
From Statsbygg’s database: With one click in MainManager, one can create operation plans that generate work orders to the APP.
What kind of information is needed in the BIM models to minimize the initial setup in this pilot project with MainManager, so that the users would be able to start those FM processes as soon as the building is finished, and the BIM model contains all the necessary “as build” information? Statsbygg has made its own “BIM standard manual” that enables designers and contractors to create BIM models for Statsbygg. The models contains all necessary information for the building phase and operation phase. In this particular pilot project several BIM models were created and imported to MainManager via IFC open format.
Combined BIM models
In MainManager one can create a “mapping sett” between the BIM parameters and MainManager variables. This ensures complete match between MainManager and the BIM information. When this is done MainManager creates complete structure of outdoor elements, building, floor, rooms and technical systems in MainManager. This process also creates a connection to the graphical elements in the BIM sync viewer and the database elements. All BIM elements are imported in the MainManager database, so the connection is holistic. This means that change in MainManager info can result in change in BIM elements and later exported to the IFC file. At the moment, this is only possible for alpha numeric information. This import process must take into account some practicalities which is necessary in the operation process. This is done in MainManager by some options that the user has in the import of building parts and technical systems.
From the Statsbygg’s pilot: A model and the technical system created for that model.
For instance, one can create one system for all lighting on each floor, or for all windows & doors etc. This means that the system creates just one work order for checking lighting on each floor level and one for checking windows & door for this floor level etc. The work order gives the user access to all lighting elements and windows elements on that floor for recording fault, change etc. This combination of “one component” in MM versus many BIM elements in the BIM model is very powerful. This means also that after standardizing the mapping set for the import process, the operation plans can be created by one “Play button” and the daily operation can start. This process makes big difference with respect to quality, time savings etc. for the operator.
The way forward at MainManager and BIM
The way forward is easy to comprehend. The IFC model should be updated in daily operations and should be the primary source of building information. An open format like IFC, is the only guarantee for safeguarding the building info for the building owner in the future. Then the owner can be totally independent of systems and software vendors. BIM models could be a major source of information for hard FM processes in the future, if the models are properly made. One cannot avoid considering the saving potential of the operation cost, that good and reliable information of the building can provide. Especially since the operating cost of the building is about 90% of the total cost.
The new process is more or less automated after import of the BIM model. The model info is used in many FM processes, like Space Management, Cleaning, Property Management etc.
Gunnlaugur B. Hjartarson
PS! You are very welcome to write me a comment!
In the beginning…
Our company has now worked on consulting and implementing Facility Management software and processes since 1994. When the company started this journey, the concept of Facility Management did not exist in the minds of its founders. The main objective at the start was the maintenance of buildings and the development of knowledge banks for durability of building parts. We were lucky to get good customers from the very beginning. Our focus was on documentation of building components, with maintenance needs as a central theme.
Champions of registration
It must be said that, that in cooperation with our customers, we probably made all the mistakes that could be made in these early years. Brave men and women were sent out to the buildings sites to measure and record every building component, ranging from windows, roofs, walls, technical systems etc. Everything was recorded with accuracy and put in a database. Photographs were taken and marked on. We were soon champions in registering and marking all building parts on photos and drawings. Soon, however, we in MainManager and our customers got our wake-up call. How could – and should – we maintain all this information, and what did the building owner gain with this detailed information? We were thinking as maintenance consultants but not of the needs of owners and operators of the buildings. All this information was good for consultants who had to prepare offerings of building maintenance every 8 years…
Finding our way
This was a good lesson for us and our customers, and it should be mentioned that they are still our customers today. It was not until we were told; “We need tools that solve our daily tasks“, that we really began to identify what kind of processes are useful in general management of real estate. Since then, we have learned that our subject has been named „Facility Management“. We have from the beginning, been keen to develop this subject further with great partners in Scandinavia and Great Britain. The journey has been extremely instructive, and now we are in a place where MainManager has developed recognized and tested solutions within the FM sector.
We have worked with the largest and most skillful asset management companies in our market. This way we have learned which processes in Facility Management gives the most benefits. Our goal is to create FM solutions that small and medium-sized companies can use less costly. This is therefore our mission “Facility Management excellence for everyone”.
Gunnlaugur B. Hjartarson
PS! You are very welcome to write me a comment!
After months of intense work on our brand new website, we are now LIVE!
It’s been a really good process for me to work on this project. As a quite new member of the company, it’s been a great way to get to know MainManager and our people a little better! Our values, identity and story, clients and products. Our headquarter is in Iceland, I’m a Norwegian graphic designer, working in the Danish office, an office that sometimes fills up with Icelandic colleagues. A very nice Icelandic man runs the Norwegian office in Oslo. Needless to say, our language/communication is a bit funny at times. My Norwegian is starting to get pretty strange, and my Danish isn’t really that up to speed… Some in the Icelandic office speaks Danish, but not all, so most of the time our company language is English. Or Scandinavian… a great mix of it all.
Anyways, the first version of our new website was made in English. Then we used our combined language skills to translate it into Icelandic, Danish and Norwegian. Our certified partner in the UK is FM180.
The progress of process…
Our last webpage was dated, and a bit difficult to navigate. We wanted the new site to be more up-to-date, more crisp and clean, but most of all, we needed it to be easier to use for existing and new customers.
As those of you working on various bigger or smaller projects out there might know; even though most of the time things are great, and everything is just working like a dream, at times you hit ‘the wall’. I have had a few bumps on the road. Nothing serious though, and mostly things that gave new knowledge to me – and to my colleagues. I believe that to be a good thing, even if it might feel frustrating at times : )
As most projects, we have been working against the ticking clock at times, trying hard to connect our tree offices, and come together to wrap this up. SO, getting to launch day is such a wonderful feeling! We’re really happy with the result and hope you all will find it easy to use.
Stay in touch
PS! You are also very welcome to write me a comment
We are proud to say that MainManager is among the few Icelandic companies that fulfill the strict conditions – set by Viðskiptablaðið (Financial Newspaper) and Keldan (information platform for the financial market) – and are on this exclusive list of successful businesses in Iceland.
In order to get listed, companies need to live up to various conditions;
The companies must have delivered a positive return in the 2017 fiscal year. Revenues must have exceeded 30 million IS krónur, assets over 80 million, and the equity ratio must have exceeded 20%. In addition, other factors, which are evaluated by the Newspaper and Kelda, are taken into account.
We are thrilled to be in the company of the approximately 3% that meets the high standards of Excellent in Iceland!
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The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) has initiated an international project with the goal to make Environmental Product Declaration(EPD) data available through Building Information Modeling (BIM).
The project will be based on a joint case study conducted by MainManager in close co-operation with Standard Norway, Standard Danmark, Catenda (Norway), Framkvæmdasýslan (Iceland) and Statsbygg (Norway).
At the ISO commitee meeting for constuction (ISO/TC 59) on October 9th, the decision was made to launch a new international standardization project to make EPD data available in BIM.
An EPD is a concise document which summarizes the environmental profile of a component, a finished product or a service in a standardized manner.
The case study work was made possible by a grant from the Nordic Innovation fund. The group worked diligently for two years on theoretical proposals on how future standards can comply to the digital world within the building industry.
A particular standard was used as a pilot and our findings are now being used as a foundation for the new ISO standard by the ISO commitee.
We are really looking forward participating in the project ahead. Watch the video and learn more about the project.
This year the conference’s emphasis was on business and practice and on the other hand research and education. Over 400 researchers and practitioners from all over Europe came together and shared their techniques and research findings from case studies.
Gunnlaugur B. Hjartarson, director and founder of MainManager was invited to speak at the conference. He gave a lecture on “Urban Innovation – Public FM and citizens involvement” where he presented MainManager’s award winning concept of City Direct to the delegates in Berlin.
City Direct provides cities and local authorities with new options to promote local democracy, engaging residents and giving them a say in the municipal decision making process.
View Gunnlaugur’s presentation of City Direct:
See what City Direct is all about, Ready, steady, Reykjavik:
We are extremely pleased to announce that on the 17th of February 2014 MainManager signed an agreement with IVConsultants for the distribution of MainManager in Australia and New Zealand. Subsequently, two of MainManagers employees went to Australia to conduct workshops and prepare IVConsultants employees for the Total facilities EXPO in Melbourne. After a few days of intensive training at the premises of IVConsultants, Ivo Vrozina, Brad Magee and Liam Wittert were ready and able to perform live presentations of MainManager.
MainManager was premiered on March 3rd at the Total facilities EXPO in Melbourne, which is one of the largest FM-exhibitions in Australia. This year more than 2000 people attended the EXPO which exceeded all expectations.
We are really excited about this new cooperation with our mates from Down Under and can‘t wait to see what the future brings.
Few words on IVConsultants
IVConsultants was established in 2007 and is based in Port Melbourne.
IVConsultant works closely with businesses to produce tailored facility management strategies through extensive consultation with clients and the auditing of existing activities and operations. Their goal is to maximise the use of clients facilities, reduce costs, increase productivity and improve asset conditions.
They also provide complete project management services like:
- Feasibility analyses
- Project management services to help implement new strategies
- Post-implementation evaluations
In addition IVConsultants assist their clients in reducing energy consumption and costs.
For more information on IVConsultans click here :www.ivconsultants.com.au