As various tenants move in and out of a commercial space, the area becoming repurposed so many times can begin to accumulate increased energy and maintenance costs. To really make an impact on a building’s performance, owners are optimizing their portfolios through “recommissioning” buildings.
This entails a small construction investment to achieve savings in overhead across the asset’s lifespan—essentially, as Schneider Electric coins it, “recalibrating a facility’s operating systems” to ensure performance.
A recent white paper I came across highlights the largest operational expense stemming from a commercial building – the compensation for the employees who work within the premises. The facility’s temperature, layout, technology, and features, all have a direct impact on employee productivity levels—this same volume of work completed points to a huge influence on company value.
The same white paper pointed out that “many studies have linked air quality and temperature to employee productivity. There is a 2% drop in productivity for each degree above 78. A similar reduction in productivity occurs when the temperature drops below 72 F.” Attention toward being in a comfortable temperature range presents a pretty large opportunity to decrease absenteeism and enhance company recruitment.
The more direct cost savings can be seen in reduced energy costs and building ROI. Some additional benefits include increased occupancy, higher rent rates, and reduction of operational risk of the building.
Some examples of recommissioning measures are:
– Calibrating, restoring, or reconfiguring space temperature sensors
– Reassessing all strategies for energy efficiency such as optimum start, resetting, and control of loads in order to confirm systems are working to peak performance
– Replacing any dampers not working actively
– Integrating automatic start of broilers and chillers
– Periodically verifying proper valve operation
When employee productivity and well-being are at stake, these measures are small undertakings that can yield a world of difference.