Building occupants are none too afraid to let somebody know when certain things are awry. When a building is too hot, the coffee too cold or the parking lot too small, rest assured they will find a facilities person to tell. But when in comes to gauging indoor environmental quality (IEQ), assessing an occupant’s satisfaction becomes more difficult.
That, too, is changing.
David Lehrer of UC-Berkeley’s Center for the Built Environment (CBE) says there are new, effective ways of collecting and analyzing feedback from building occupants to assess IEQ and improve building operations in the process.
Lehrer, along with Leah Zagreus, a CBE research specialist, will present this information at the National Facilities Management and Technology Conference/ Exposition, taking place March 9-11, 2004, at the Baltimore Convention Center. One of the tools he will discuss is a CBE-developed, Web-based occupant survey that enables facility professionals to measure building occupants’ satisfaction with their workplace environment.
“A set of core questions is used to investigate environmental factors: indoor air quality, thermal comfort, lighting and acoustics,” Lehrer says. “The survey questions and open-ended comment fields provide a channel of detailed occupant satisfaction data, helping diagnose the cause of perceived problems.”
Survey results are presented via an automated online reporting tool that allows results from one building to be compared with data from other buildings.
“These occupant surveys can be used in a variety of ways,” Lehrer says. “Facility managers can compare the performance of facilities in a real estate portfolio, diagnose causes of occupant discomfort, evaluate the effectiveness of improvements, and monitor occupant perceptions of operations and maintenance effectiveness.”
Lehrer’s and Zagreus’ presentation will use examples from actual CBE field studies to show how the occupant survey has been used to evaluate the performance of building design features and to diagnose problems.
The presentation will also discuss a new Web-enabled tool for managing occupant complaints and requests: the Tenant Interface for Energy and Maintenance System, which was developed for the U.S. General Services Adminis-tration (GSA) and is being tested by CBE and GSA.
AFE Announces Credits Available at NFM&T 2004
In order to receive credits toward their recertification, holders of AFE certification (CPE and CPMM) attending NFM&T should complete the individual CEU form located on the AFE Web site.
Attendees should complete the form and submit it to AFE to the attention of the certification department. Attendees can submit the forms via fax at (513) 247-7422 or e-mail.
The National Facilities Management and Technology Conference/Exposition takes place March 9-11, 2004. Here are brief descriptions of some of the conference tracks. In all, NFM&T will offer more than 60 free educational sessions across seven tracks.
Strategy. Hear how facilities professionals can continue meeting facility challenges while staying fiscally responsible.
Operations. See what is needed for successful projects and to make buildings an engineering success.
Technology. Learn how the latest in building systems can improve a facility’s bottom-line performance.
Sustainable Design & Operations. Investigate how green buildings improve occupant satisfaction while reducing environmental impact.
Energy. Get insights into managing energy supplies and use while staying focused on efficiency.
Online Registration Going on Now.