Obtain 70% or More Cost Coverage to Develop Your Building Automation System (BAS) Training Program
We certainly aren’t the first ones to say it, but it is worth repeating: “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” BAS training is a fundamental element of scalability, reliability, and a necessity when distributing authority to many individuals. Training increases reliability and decreases risk, and when you can obtain 70% or more cost coverage to develop your training program, there is no reason not to build it into your annual training program.
In this blog, we’ll be discussing the benefits of BAS training, the consequences of not training your team, how to ensure training is successful, and more.
The Consequences of Not Having Proper BAS Training
The lack of BAS training can have a significant negative impact on facilities operations, leading to various operational challenges and inefficiencies. Without proper training, facility staff may not have the necessary skills and knowledge to perform their job functions effectively. This can result in decreased productivity, increased downtime, and higher maintenance costs.
In addition, a lack of training can also result in decreased employee morale and job satisfaction, leading to high turnover rates and difficulty in retaining skilled workers. Ultimately, the absence of a proper BAS training program can severely hinder the overall performance and success of facility operations, affecting the organization’s bottom line and reputation.
Why BAS Training?
Training isn’t a silver bullet solution to prevent or address all the issues listed above, but it is a step in the right direction toward mitigating the potential for mishaps that could be considered contributing factors toward operational issues.
Since the building automation system is the primary instrument for manipulating and controlling your systems, training should be a vital part of your strategy to hedge against the risk of operational issues and to position your team for better operational reliability.
How Do I Get BAS Training to Stick?
When operational reliability is paramount, a successful BAS training program should be ingrained in the company culture and daily operational practices. The behaviors and desired outcomes from the training program should eventually become second nature for all team members.
Train Beyond the Seminar
Our view on training is a five-part process:
- Seminar: Introduction to new subject matter in an engaging presentation format
- Practicum: Simulated participation in a new behavior
- Homework: Self-practice to reinforce subject matter and new behaviors
- Test: Question-and-answer-style ‘proof point’ of knowledge retention
- Behavior: New daily operating practices
Unfortunately, society at large views training in a limited capacity, as merely the “seminar” portion listed above. Over time, we have seen that operations teams potentially won’t fully embrace new methods without the remaining steps to reinforce them.
To truly understand the new subject matter, the trainees need to master it and — in an ideal world — eventually become the trainers for future individuals. However, bandwidth, individual priorities, and time considerations have been rate-limiting steps in achieving the ultimate level of “trainee-to-trainer” mastery. The five parts presented above are the practical means by which to make the most of your training program.
Increase Reliability by Standardizing BAS Operations
Standardization is a key element to ensuring system reliability in building automation systems. Consistency — not only with the sensors, wiring, points, programming, and components, but also in the user methodologies and practices — improves your odds for reliable scalability in the future.
Use consistent protocols, interfaces, and communication methods. This standardization can help reduce the complexity of system operation and maintenance, improve interoperability, and ensure compliance with standards, all of which can improve system reliability. Inconsistent practices can threaten reliability.
For example, BAS point overrides are often considered trivial but can lead to severe missteps. Manual point overrides by building operators are clear indicators that there could be something awry with the automatic operation. They can also indicate a lack of operator trust to allow the system to operate in automatic mode. If the lack of trust is rooted in a fundamental misunderstanding of the system or the programming, training can help operators better understand the system and find a better way to address the problem.
Training Considerations for High Reliability Operations
In broad terms, training on the BAS is only one part of your strategy to hedge against missteps that lead to increased risk to operational reliability. Training by no means ensures that issues won’t arise. But educated stakeholders and informed workers help mitigate the spread of misinformation and propagation of non-standard practices than can lead to bigger problems.
Documentation created when developing the training program can serve as a reference for building operators and maintenance personnel, ensuring they have the information they need to properly operate and maintain the system. This can reduce the risk of user errors and improve overall reliability.
Lastly, trainees need to understand why the subject matter and new behavioral expectations are important to them and the organization. In order to embrace the subject matter or desired outcome, they need to know how it will impact them as individuals.
Summary: Keys to Success in BAS Training
- Train beyond the seminar.
- Define KPIs and establish performance monitoring criteria.
- Explain why processes are important to the organization and the individual.
- Be transparent with performance monitoring criteria and the use case.
Make Strides in the Right Direction with Proper BAS Training
Overall, if done correctly, training can be an important step in the right direction toward achieving your organization’s goals. You can also obtain 75% or more cost coverage to develop your building automation system (BAS) training program.
Interested in learning more? Contact Enica today to discuss how to customize a program that will put you and your team on the road toward better operation.