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Today's tip is about how to manage big data.
Information is easy to collect, but it's often much more difficult to find tangible uses for that data, beyond just "Hmm, that's interesting." Any facility manager with a sophisticated, high-performance BAS probably has at one time or another spent a bleary-eyed afternoon combing through a database. And while comparing the energy use of Fan 1 vs Fan 2 in July 2007 is probably interesting to most engineering types, it's not especially useful for reducing overall energy consumption in July 2014.
So how do you sift through data to find actionable information? Of course, it all depends on your situation — use Portfolio Manager to benchmark energy use, set up alerts for when energy performance fall outside certain parameters, run experiments on set points and on/off times. As the kids say these days, "You do you."
What's important though is that you do have a plan in place for analyzing data. As facility managers often say, un-analyzed data is as useless as data never collected in the first place. But what's more data collected and not used is often a distraction. So before you check all the boxes on that sophisticated energy management new program, make sure you have the time and capability to use what you're collecting.