Intelligent Business Models for Intelligent Buildings

Intelligent Buildings are quickly becoming the norm. By combining the latest advances in cloud, connectivity, analytics, and physical design, they enable better visibility, greater energy efficiency, as well as improved safety for owners, operators, and occupants. Quick and easy access to real-time actionable insights delivers additional control over day-to-day operations while enhancing long-term outcomes.

But, establishing Intelligent Buildings is not just about integrating cloud and IoT; organizations need to be able to devise intelligent business models, to be able to drive maximum value and returns from their investments.

The Rise of Intelligent Buildings

The growing focus on sustainable architecture and green design is the main driver that is driving the rapid growth of Intelligent Buildings. As concerns around global warming and climate change escalate, Intelligent Buildings pave the way for reduced energy consumption while allowing organizations to seamlessly integrate various building subsystems, which typically operate in silos, as they are supplied and installed by different vendors.

Through sustainable design approaches, these buildings help preserve energy while offering new levels of insight and control. In addition, they also offer much-needed space flexibility along with high levels of safety and cost-effectiveness. In the long run, these features translate into highly efficient operations, optimized resource management, better space utilization, and greater occupant productivity.

The Need for Intelligent Business Models

Transforming urban buildings into Intelligent Buildings that pave the way for a sustainable and productive future is no longer just about fancy real estate. Today, the focus has shifted from cutting-edge smart building products towards offering unmatched intelligent experiences.

In a green era, Intelligent Buildings need to enable companies to launch innovative business models where, instead of just the real estate, companies can charge for experience and lifestyles as well.

Let’s look at some of the different business models building owners and operators can adopt to set Intelligent Buildings in motion:

1. Subscription-based: In addition to offering a range of standard Building Management System (BMS) services, intelligent, subscription-based models can allow building owners to make more effective plans aligned with business strategy and corporate standards while helping them identify resources, trends, innovations, drive opportunity, and quickly advance into the marketplace. Since project plans are built and deployed in collaboration with qualified and experienced Intelligent Building operators, owners can leverage the best team assets and innovations to create (and sustain) business advantage.

2. System integration: In recent years, the partner channel has been witnessing exceptional growth in the Intelligent Building industry, thanks to the growing complexity of modern use cases. Instead of attempting to set the Intelligent

Building ball rolling on their own, building operators can opt for the system integration model that allows for seamless integration of varied systems across multiple domains, allowing for stronger partnerships to be forged. Such models are extremely sought-after for those intending to innovate in the Intelligent Building sphere as it enables building owners and operators to support their internal innovation efforts while permitting the diversification of products, services, and long-term prospects.

3. Consumption-based: Building owners and operators looking to create Intelligent Buildings can also benefit greatly by embracing data analytics to aggregate and analyze critical building data. By using advanced analytics tools, they can drive effective decision-making while providing customizable features and services to building users. Building owners can make use of data as a service to unearth key insights across their facilities and provision infrastructure as required by the business or end-users – thus optimizing energy and space usage.

4. Ownership-based: Another model building owners can embrace to pave the way for intelligent buildings is the ownership-based model. By taking ownership of one or more control points, they can ensure the overall success of the full stack while taking a sustainable position about where and how to play within the realm of connected buildings. For instance, incumbent building infrastructure players who already own a good percentage of the hardware infrastructure can look to move up the stack to offer an end-to-end connected solution. On the other hand, established technology players who are deeply focused on cloud services offerings can go down the stack to own software infrastructure to deliver additional value.

5. Outcome-based: Building owners and facility management companies can also opt for an outcome-based model which is linked to the end-user experience. They can evolve the business model as a fixed cost, plus variable cost where the variable cost could be linked to the user experience (for example, the guaranteed temperature of x degrees at macro/micro level, lighting at y lumens at workspace areas, or guaranteed air circulation at z level, etc.) Building owners can use IoT devices to provide the data/evidence for this user experience and receive based on the guaranteed percentage delivery of such parameters.

The shift towards intelligent models is quickly picking steam, as building owners and operators attempt to introduce an array of intelligent capabilities to keep up green energy requirements while also ensuring future revenue growth. This is increasingly imminent in the post-pandemic era, where most businesses are re-evaluating their strategies and seeking ways to enable on-demand, customized, and scalable access to space, amenities, and services. Instead of having “location” at the focus of every business strategy, operators now need to connect users with services, so location becomes deprioritized, and service becomes prioritized.

These new business models can help building owners and operators enhance bottom line benefits, shifting the focus from offering just physical space to offering unmatched smart digital services. Irrespective of what model you choose, integrating and leveraging emerging technology to create unmatched Intelligent Building experiences is the way forward.

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