How Location and Condition Monitoring Services Can Improve Your Business
It is no surprise that location and condition monitoring services are being widely adopted across a range of different sectors. Their installation enables businesses to simplify asset management and improve operational efficiency. By providing real-time visibility of assets and staff, this technology lets businesses optimise facility and asset use and monitor the condition of critical equipment. Here, we’ll look in more detail at how location and condition monitoring services can improve your business.
How location and condition monitoring services work
Location and condition monitoring systems, like Bluvision, which is available from Universal Smart Cards, work by combining a range of smart technologies that include Bluetooth (BLE) Smart beacons and tags, Wi-Fi gateways and a HID Bluzone Cloud Services portal.
Essentially, active tags are attached to items and assets (or worn by staff) and this enables them to be read by the network of BLE beacons installed across the facility. The beacons themselves are linked by Wi-Fi to the business’ cloud portal and, in this sense, become IoT devices that gather real-time data which can be analysed, used to create reports and issue alerts.
As the system is wireless, it means an entire facility can be fitted out quickly and in a way that keeps installation costs to a minimum. Even the cloud portal integrates smoothly into existing IT systems and as it is cloud-based, there’s no need for expensive investment in servers or additional equipment, like antennas. What’s more, the system uses end to end encryption to ensure that all data within the platform is kept secure.
- The ability to track assets
BLE beacons and tags allow businesses to continuously track their assets and inventory across their facilities, providing them with accurate location data to within one metre. Knowing the current location makes it easy to find lost items while historical movement data gives managers an insight into how often an item is used, where it is used and, if linked to an employee’s tag, who it is used by.
From finding tools in factories to locating forklifts in a warehouse, knowing where important assets are, cuts down the time spent looking for them and, thus, improves efficiency. Knowing how they are used can help companies find smarter ways to operate. Both solutions, therefore, can be used to cut costs and increase productivity.
- Building utilisation and management
Providing staff with tags also brings a number of benefits as they can be used to optimise building utilisation and management. Companies can easily get historical reports of occupancy rates, for example, that can help uncover previously unseen health and safety issues that need addressing. At the same time, should an emergency incident occur, knowing the location of all staff can help save lives.
Aside from health and safety, knowing how staff use the building on a day to day basis can help improve how the facility is managed and utilised. On large or busy sites, for example, traffic pathways can be created to cut down the time it takes for people to move from place to place and to prevent bottlenecks. By discovering the frequency that rooms are used, it is possible to make more profitable use of rarely occupied spaces or to shut them down to save on lighting and heating costs.
- Increase capacity and reduce downtime
Condition monitoring is a way of tracking the health of critical machinery. When equipment breaks down or performs less well, capacity is lost and, in the worst scenario, operations are brought to a standstill. This can be catastrophic for businesses and have significant long-term implications.
Knowing the operational condition of components, such as motors, conveyors, bearings, computer servers, etc., helps organisations minimise the risk of downtime. When monitored, the historical and real-time information enables the system to predict when a component is likely to fail or when it needs maintenance. Not only does this help things get fixed before disaster strikes, it also helps maintenance staff work more effectively, targeting machines identified by the system rather than just following a routine.
Importantly, the data provided lets operators know immediately should equipment unexpectedly fail, pinpointing where the problem lies and enabling repair to happen much quicker.
Location and condition monitoring can bring a number of important benefits to your business. It enables you to know the whereabouts of assets and items at any time and provides you with rich data about how they are used and moved about the premises. Providing staff with tags helps improve health and safety and building management, and condition monitoring helps predict equipment failure before it happens, reducing downtime. With affordable location and condition monitoring solutions now available and easy to install, this is a technology we are likely to see more companies take advantage of.