Facility managers, electricians, and other service professionals oversee an fca.
Facility managers, electricians, and other service professionals oversee an fca.

Facility Condition Assessments

Tracking the performance of your buildings, assets, and equipment is the key to keeping your facilities and operations running smoothly. Not only should you know how your assets are performing, you should track where they’re located, when they were installed, when they were serviced and what for, the next anticipated maintenance date, energy usage, run time, and projected lifespan. That’s a substantial amount of information to track, but a facility condition assessment (FCA) can gather all of this information and more, putting your school or business on a path for success moving forward.

Learn more about what a facility condition assessment contains, why it is beneficial, and how to use it.

What is a facility condition assessment?

A facility condition assessment analyzes the data from asset and resource reports, along with other findings, to determine the physical condition and functional performance of buildings, assets, and equipment. These findings can inform investment and maintenance decisions, such as capital improvements, sustainability efforts, renovations, and handicap provisions. The bottom line is the more you know, the better you can plan.

Graphs depict Equipment Replacement Cost reports, cost projection, and equipment type.

What’s included in an FCA?

A complete facility condition assessment includes the following:

  • Assessment of function, cost, and performance of all physical assets and facilities
    • Including roofing, electrical, HVAC, plumbing, mechanicals, and more
  • Defined maintenance needs and timelines
  • Estimated lifespans of machinery, equipment, and buildings
  • Asset information, such as manufacturer, warranty, and serial number
  • Identification of facility storage capacities and inventory
  • Performance metrics and standards
    • Facility condition index (FCI)
  • Standards for energy usage and potential areas for conservation and sustainability
  • Asset or equipment locations
  • Current expenses, long-term costs, and estimated timeline for capital expenditures
  • Documentation of coding errors and technology inefficiencies
  • Report of all adherence or deviation from safety standards and code requirements
  • Cost breakdown for preventive maintenance, deferred maintenance, and repairs
  • Expense analysis for modernization, improvements, or renovations

The benefits of an FCA

A facility condition assessment provides valuable information and insights to the functionality of your facility. With this information, you can make calculated decisions about staffing, project timelines, prioritized task lists, specific budgets, and capital planning.

The benefits of conducting a facility condition assessment are as follows:

  • Provides more accurate and actionable data
    • FCAs are based on fact, experience, and educated estimates
  • Ranks and prioritizes budgetary needs and establishes maintenance and repair timelines
  • Creates a system and long-term plan for equipment and building maintenance
  • Enables better capital planning and forecasting
  • Provides more accurate forecasting for repairs, replacements, and other expenditures
  • Ensures compliance with industry standards and safety requirements
  • Gives project managers, contracted workers, and developers specific timelines and budgets
  • Helps estimate deferred maintenance expenses

Perhaps most importantly, an FCA can help with capital planning initiatives. According to a survey of facility managers and other leaders, facilities capital planning is extremely challenging without the support of an FCA.

How to create a facility condition assessment

When dealing with facilities and equipment, gathering the latest information is absolutely crucial if you wish to understand the current condition of your assets and potential trajectory of your facility at large. Whether you work in a manufacturing plant or manage a school district, if you oversee a substantial property with numerous HVAC units, buildings, or grounds, you need a way to track and oversee those assets. Not only is a facility assessment an invaluable tool used to collect and organize information, but it also creates a clear report to identify weak points, significant needs, and other priorities.

Download our Facility Condition Assessment Checklist here!

Who performs an FCA?

To get started with a facility condition assessment, the best thing to do is call on a professional. Most aspects of an FCA require a trained eye, and someone familiar with your equipment, software, facilities, and other technology will be the best equipped to provide an accurate assessment. Bringing in an outside expert can also help you avoid overburdening your internal resources with a project of this scope.

Our professional team at FMX can help you get started on a turnkey facility condition assessment. We can provide you with a suggested planned maintenance checklist and a capital forecasting report. These materials can reveal the condition, capacity, and lifespan of your HVAC, plumbing, and electrical systems, and once the assessment is complete, we can import all information directly into your FMX Software.

Why FMX? Our FCAs provide the following:

  • A watchlist of items in poor condition
    • Why? So you can plan ahead and prevent dangerous accidents and sudden failures
  • A professionally recommended planned maintenance schedule and instruction set
    • Why? To ensure critical assets receive the recommended routine maintenance, extend the life of your assets at a lower operational cost, and to monitor high-risk assets.
  • A log of individual asset capacities
    • Why? To measure asset capabilities and optimize their usage and performance, maximizing energy efficiency and productivity
  • A comprehensive asset log and map
    • Why? A complete list of machines, equipment, and other assets with a corresponding photograph, location, and QR code can save outside vendors and internal workers time and ensure accuracy

What is a facility condition index (FCI)?

You can’t discuss a facility condition assessment without looking at a facility condition index (FCI). When performing an FCA to gather intel about facility and equipment performance, you need a standard to measure your performance against–that’s where the FCI comes in.

A facility condition index is a standard metric used to benchmark the quality and condition of a facility. Used throughout the facilities management industry, the FCI is calculated by dividing the total costs of existing repair costs by the replacement value. A larger FCI deficiency indicates more extensive needs than a lower FCI deficiency. Ideally, facilities should aim for an FCI under 10%, (or 0.1).

A simple chart shows how the Facility Condition Index formula measures renewal needs, deferred maintenance, and CRV.

Facility condition assessment vs. Property condition assessment

While talking about facility condition assessments, you’ll likely hear about property condition assessments (PCA). While the two are similar in some respects, their purpose and scope differ. Whereas an FCA is a living document meant to be updated and changed as facilities and equipment change, a PCA is a one-time assessment meant to inform someone of a facility’s current physical condition.

The key differences between a facility condition assessment and property condition assessment are as follows:

FCA PCA
Completed for facility managers, executives, or other internal managers Completed for new property owner after a sale, typically
Provides overview of current conditions and projections, and should be updated regularly Provides overview of current conditions
Assesses each aspect of the facility, including operating systems and all components, to provide a more accurate projection of capital expenditures Assesses existing maintenance costs and provides an overview of projected repair and improvement expenses

Assessment findings: What to do next

Your FCA is complete and you’re ready to take action. Now is the time to make sure your next steps put that FCA to work for you. After the assessment is complete, use your findings to generate positive immediate and long-term change. To ensure you take the appropriate actions after the facility condition assessment is completed, follow these steps.

1. Report FCA findings

After the management team has reviewed the findings, analyze the information with the FCA administrator and relevant project managers or internal topic experts. You know your company, and your contributors know their roles. Reviewing the details of each suggested improvement and cost analysis can better ensure accurate estimations and projections. Consider specifics to your industry, market, location, system, and other relevant factors to fact-check. Once all information has been confirmed and understood, it should be shared with the appropriate teams.

2. Store FCA documentation

All information gathered from a facility condition assessment should be documented and stored appropriately. Not only is this important for guidance and implementation purposes, but it will also provide a reliable benchmark for comparison in future months and years as you add or upgrade assets. FCA documentation can provide invaluable insight and improve long-term planning accuracy.

Using a facilities management software like FMX to store your facility condition assessment information can help modernize and streamline your system processes. Our software provides a space for all relevant information gleaned from an FCA, including Preventive Maintenance, Equipment Maintenance, Interactive Mapping, and Utility Tracking.

After our team performs an FCA at your facility, we’ll upload all information to your FMX site, including details gathered from all inspected equipment, photographs, asset locations on Interactive Mapping software, QR codes for each piece of equipment for easy tracking via mobile, and more. With FMX, you can store all information from your FCA and follow the recommended maintenance standards to more accurately track and care for your facilities.

3. Incorporate FCA feedback

The assessment should provide enough information to indicate priorities in your maintenance, repair, and service lineup. Use the FCA findings to make recommended changes to improve safety, performance, and value. Any skilled facility manager knows the better you care for your facilities and equipment, the better they perform. And when your equipment performs well, you will be better equipped to meet production deadlines and retain investment value. Your FCA should indicate maintenance oversights, find facility weak points, and suggest areas for improvement to benefit your facility. Use these reports to create immediate action items and long-term initiatives, including regular maintenance, installation of safety features, energy-efficiency upgrades, etc.

FMX can help with your facility condition assessment

At FMX, our team of certified professionals can visit your property in-person to perform an FCA and upload all corresponding information to your FMX site. At the end of the process, you can export individual asset details surveyed in the FCA, including all asset notes, floor maps, pictures of equipment, corresponding asset QR-codes, a recommended course of action for asset maintenance, each asset’s remaining useful life (RUI), as well as capital planning data.

Your FCA should provide you with defensible data to justify funding for new assets, asset maintenance, or other facility-related investments. By using FMX’s tailored dashboards and fields, you can sort this data in whatever way best represents your facility’s interests.

The key to any good FCA is to create a model that is easily updated and builtable. When we set you up with the FCA data in FMX, we also show you how to continually upload data, add assets, input maintenance records, and more. Or, if you aren’t in a position to do upkeep internally, send the data to us and we’ll handle it.

Are you interested in learning more about facility condition assessments? Get in touch with our team for a custom quote for your custom facility condition assessment at FMX. Or, if you’d like to learn more about our facilities management software, book a demo!

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