Knowing that a maintenance or repair job is done correctly is a good feeling and also great for business. However, this type of sheer confidence isn’t always possible without real-time data to fall back on. That’s why harnessing the power of the Internet of Things (IoT) is crucial for ensuring vendor accountability.
Whether it’s human error or dishonesty (yes, the latter is unsettling, but it does happen), facility management companies, electricians, plumbers, etc., don’t always get things right the first time around. So here is how a connected facility changes the playing field.
Vendors have more accountability if they’re servicing a connected facility because there’s access to real-time data and alerts. Operations leaders can leverage these to ensure every service and repair job meets expectations. They can also see when preventive equipment maintenance is required and ensure vendors are scheduled for and adhere to timely visits. Text and email alerts are also delivered to key employees when equipment issues occur. This makes it possible to ask vendors to make proactive repairs and then follow up on the results of their work (not to mention also identify catastrophic failures before they happen).
So what’s the bottom line? With access to reliable data, operations leaders can confirm maintenance and repairs are done correctly and deliver the expected result—whether that’s reduced water usage after fixing a leak, less energy-spend after repairing a faulty piece of equipment, or the ability to maintain a consistent and comfortable temperature after an upgrade to the HVAC system.
Here’s a recap of our number one tip and additional advice for maintaining vendor accountability:
- Leverage reliable data from a connected facility. As we’ve already mentioned, the most efficient way to hold vendors accountable is to trust and act on data. For example, using a solution like Open Kitchen or SiteSage provides enterprise-wide visibility into HVAC, lighting, and other equipment before and after it’s been serviced by a third party. In addition, features like corrective action tracking, real-time alerts, and remote equipment monitoring make it possible to ensure facility management companies and other contractors do what they say they’ll do when they say they’ll do it. This is important for maintaining a high level of equipment and facility performance.
- Get to know your vendor contacts. Read and review every vendor contract with the utmost care and depend on referrals when possible.
- Hold vendors to high standards. Don’t be shy about placing the same high standards on your vendors as you do your full-time employees. Make your expectations clear, and if a problem does arise, the data gathered by a connected facility will help confirm or negate your concerns.
- Keep detailed records. A simple verbal agreement doesn’t ensure that a service visit or repair is completed as expected. Instead, keep a paper trail by emailing confirmations, schedules, deadlines, expectations, etc. It’s even better if all this information flows through a CRM.
We’re all human—sometimes vendors make mistakes, but it’s also possible they’re not being honest or don’t have the expertise to get to the root of a problem. Whatever the reason, combining a connected facility, clear communication, and a commitment to maintaining high standards creates an excellent foundation for building trusting vendor relationships.
Learn more about how your organization can increase vendor accountability when you start a conversation with a member of our team.