Schneider and Planon transform university building

  • August 16, 2021
  • Steve Rogerson

French energy company Schneider Electric and Dutch workplace management firm Planon are digitally transforming the engineering and computing building at Coventry University in the UK.

The work will help future proof the building, improving sustainability, asset resilience and occupant experience, while reducing operational costs.

“One of our main goals is to move away from reactive work, instead resolving issues before they affect our staff and students,” said Nasima Laming, business systems support officer at Coventry University. “Leveraging digital tools, we will monitor the condition of our campus plant and equipment proactively and get recommended actions, many of which we can automate for a smooth and seamless process. The additional aspects of course are the cost and energy savings we hope to benefit from.”

Coventry University selected Schneider Electric and Planon to help set and meet its specific requirements. The joint offering is another milestone in the partnership between the companies, which began in 2019. Leveraging the synergies between the two companies, it is the first project of its kind in the UK.

This involves the integration of two smart systems. First is Planon’s IWMS integrated workplace management system, which enables facility managers to plan, execute and monitor all activities involved in reactive and planned preventative maintenance, space and move management, asset management, operational facility services, room reservations, and other customer services.

The second system is Schneider Electric’s EcoStruxure Building Advisor, a suite of analytic monitoring services that unlocks a building management system’s operational performance so it can be remotely and proactively maintained. It provides insights into building operations by constantly monitoring systems and identifying faults to address a building’s inefficiencies proactively. As a result, there is an impact on operating costs, occupant comfort and asset value.

The IWMS software automatically processes smart building diagnostics from Building Advisor to determine whether an action is needed. It can initiate a standardised workflow or highlight an issue for a manual decision by the facilities team by scheduling and dispatching the work to the field engineers’ mobile phones for execution.

“By working with Schneider Electric and its smart building operating and analytics technology, we can bring new benefits to Coventry University,” said Marcel Groenenboom, Planon CCO. “All three parties share a common vision on the role of digital technology and its contribution to creating safe, healthy, sustainable and efficient data-driven buildings. We can’t wait to see the results at Coventry.”

Kas Mohammed, vice president at Schneider Electric, added: “We are delighted to continue our collaboration with Planon and join forces to work on the project at Coventry University. Buildings of the future must be sustainable, hyper-efficient, resilient and people focused. The Covid-19 pandemic has added a new dimension to this shift: buildings must support resiliency and continuity. The university clearly understands the need to future-proof its buildings as it strives to provide the best possible environment for occupants.”