How much time do we spend trying to find as-built drawings or some similar dated documents? While the building systems' data points can be part of a typical database, a significant portion of relevant facility management information is likely to be in other formats. These formats include paper, such as hard-copy drawings, submittals, O&M manuals, photographs, contracts, faxes, and forms, but, also electronic files in Word, PDF, Excel and Autodesk, all of which need to be managed. A document management system should be implemented to scan the paper documents into an electronic format and store all of the electronic files.
The system typically has an index with a format that may be similar to a building database, which either stores the document or directs users to another system where the document resides. Systems typically have a search capability allowing users to retrieve documents based upon different criteria. These systems compliment the data management plan and in order to truly integrate they need intuitive indexing with firm adherence to the administrative processes of indexing and document conversion.
With the flood of data potentially generated in a building it's not unusual or unexpected to feel overwhelmed. With the proper administrative processes the technology generating the data can be put to work tofind the valuable information we need to effectively manage our buildings.