When working on a speculative office fit out, it’s impossible to know what a tenant might want.
The usual way of working on these types of projects is simply to specify what the building owner wants.
This is usually achieved without spending money on advanced features that tenants might not want, but there is another way.
Make life easier for building owners
How can a system be specified that isn’t over specified or underperforms based on client requirements?
The key consideration is the architecture of the security system itself and how it can cope with change.
If the architecture is scalable and flexible enough, it can cope with any request made by a tenant wishing to extend the landlord system.
If the building owner decides to build another building nearby, it can extend the existing systems to control the new building.
This flexibility and scalability benefit the owner or operator of the building in several ways as it:
- Extends the usable life of the system, providing a better return on investment
- Creates a unique selling point, which can make the building more attractive to potential tenants.
In this example, the security system can be built into the rental cost for the tenant, saving them money, but enables them to manage their own space.
Accommodating tenants that increase or decrease in size may require considerable configuration work.
When using a flexible software-based system, it’s quick and easy to combine doors from other spaces into a single space.
I see the benefit, but how do I put it into a specification?
Anticipate potential future needs
I understand that you don’t have a crystal ball or can accurately guess what a client needs in 5 years.
You can, however, look at either potential options within similar buildings, or the requirements of certain sectors.
Example 1 – Building with Meeting Rooms
Consider an access control system that can integrate with a room booking system to manage access to meeting rooms in future.
Example 2 – Sector Specific Requirements
A food manufacturing facility with a large warehouse is likely to be interested in electronic lockers to secure personal possessions.
There is a careful balance required here on what’s likely to be needed versus a feature that’s unlikely to be implemented during the lifetime of the system.
Discuss future plans and aspirations with the client
If the client is planning to extend geographically in future, they need to consider a system that supports filtering and delegation.
A single card technology needs to be adopted that can be used at any site, including those which the client doesn’t own outright.
The system needs to be capable of scaling to multiple sites, and locations, without making it too complex to manage.
Plan for common pain points, such as cards and card readers
It’s now accepted that the security of a specific card technology will be compromised within 3-5 years of release.
A quick win here is to specify card readers that are capable of supporting new technologies through software upgrades.
This will save a major expense later on.
Do these options increase the cost ??? In a word, no. They actually SAVE money.
You don’t pay more for a system with a flexible architecture versus one that isn’t, in actual fact, by working with open, rather than closed protocol systems, you may even find it cheaper.
We are also not adding cost on the front end by specifying a system that can have its card readers upgraded, but this will save a LOT of time and money later on.
To optimise your in-house specs to prevent over specification without losing flexibility, contact me and I’ll be happy to advise.