Plan for tomorrow with the space you use today. That is a tactical strategy that many corporate owner organizations are using in relation to facilities management and space planning efforts. Technology comes to the forefront to help owners track space used within the organization, which subsequently helps cut operating costs.

The latest news comes from health benefits company Harvard Pilgrim Health Care, www.harvardpilgrim.org, Boston, Mass. This organization is using technology in order to more effectively track, analyze, and report facilities information. The idea is to use the technology, from FM:Systems, www.fmsystems.com, Raleigh, N.C., in order to help improve operational effectiveness while minimizing costs.

For Pilgrim, the potential exists in helping better plan for the more than 700,000 sq.ft. currently being managed by the facilities department. Processes that were manual in the past, like onboarding and maintenance requests, can now be entered in the new system. This enables internal resources to focus on more strategic projects for the company. The data centralization will be of great benefit, allowing for quick access and reporting, which should streamline communication across departments.

When it comes to space planning, one unique solution comes from PeopleCube, www.peoplecube.com, Framingham, Mass. In particular, its PeopleCounter solution provides real estate analysis that help owners make educated, cost-effective decisions regarding space utilization.

By using traffic and occupancy detection devices and interactive visualization dashboards the software will track, measure, and analyze occupancy and space utilization information across the entire facility, even down to such granular levels as the individual workspace.

According to the company, its use of image and desk-sensor technology provides greater than 95% accuracy to passively count the number of people entering/exiting a particular location or using a certain workspace. Capturing such data can help with a myriad of tasks regarding existing space planning, but also could help owners with regards to planning efforts around future facilities.