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  • Writer's pictureWill Gage

Single Source of Truth: What are the benefits for managing your building?

Wondering how to streamline your building management process? This article dives into the significance of establishing a Single Source of Truth (SSoT) in building management and its myriad benefits for building owners and professionals. With regulations tightening and buildings becoming more complex, having an SSoT isn't just an advantage; it's becoming a necessity.

1. Why is a Single Source of Truth Essential in Building Management?

1.1 What is a Single Source of Truth?

A Single Source of Truth (SSoT) refers to a centralised, accessible place where all building information is stored, managed, and updated. This concept ensures that everyone involved in the building's lifecycle — from architects and contractors to owners and facility managers — relies on the same, up-to-date data.

Why is SSoT crucial for you? First, it eliminates the confusion and mistakes that often occur when multiple versions of documents exist. Second, it saves you time and effort in sourcing the correct information, which can speed up decision-making and operational processes.

1.2 How does it Improve Efficiency?

By centralising all building information, an SSoT remarkably improves operational efficiency. For instance, when data is dispersed across different platforms or documents, teams waste valuable time searching for, or contacting others in the search for the right file or latest version of a document. The problem is exacerbated when you consider how long buildings exist for and how many different people are involved throughout it’s lifespan. With an SSoT, they know exactly where to look, but also where to store that information in th first place.

Key efficiency gains include:

  • Faster access to information: Data is stored in one location, cutting down search time.

  • Reduced errors: With one source of truth, the risk of using outdated or incorrect data is minimised.

1.3 What does recent legislation like the Building Safety Act say?

The Building Safety Act 2022, (drafted following the findings of Dame Judith Hackitt’s report on the Grenfell disaster) underscores the importance of making sure the right information is available to the right people at the right time.

Dame Judith highlighted the need for a ‘Golden Thread’ (essentially another name for an SSoT) for a building, and the legislation requires buildings in England falling under the definition of a ‘High Risk Residential Building’ to have this information immediately available to the Building Safety Regulator upon request, or face fines and even, in the worst cases, imprisonment.

1.4 What role does Building Passport play?

Building Passport serves as an exemplary tool for creating and maintaining an SSoT for buildings. It's designed to store, organise, and share your building information in a way that complies with legislation whilst being super simple to use. By using Building Passport, building owners and professionals can:

  • Ensure compliance with the data management elements in the latest regulations.

  • Save time and reduce costs associated with document management.

  • Enhance communication between all parties involved in the building's lifecycle.

Some of the benefits of Building Passport:

  • Streamlined data management: Centralise your building data to ease access and updates.

  • Support for compliance: Align with legislative requirements effortlessly.

  • Safety improvement: Provide essential information to emergency services for better-prepared responses.

  • Speed of sale: Prepare your sale pack in advance to save time during the transaction process.

  • Accuracy of insurance: Having all data to hand means risk is easier to pinpoint and therefore premiums are more accurate.

  • Hold people to account: Monitor who has added what, and when.

In essence, Building Passport represents a tailored solution that brings the concept of an SSoT into practical application, offering clear benefits for all stakeholders throughout the lifecycle of a building.

2. Key Benefits of a Single Source of Truth for Building Owners and Professionals

2.1 Enhancing Compliance

Staying on top of compliance is a relentless task for building owners and professionals, more so with the ever-tightening regulations. A Single Source of Truth simplifies this by centralising critical compliance documents and updates. For instance, Building Passport enables stakeholders to securely store and organise compliance information in one place, making it easier to remain compliant with legislation such as the Building Safety Act.

A systematised repository also means quicker access during inspections or audits, reducing the chance of non-compliance penalties. The result? You save not only on potential fines but also on the administrative burden of managing compliance across multiple channels.

2.2 Saving Time and Reducing Costs

Cutting down on redundant tasks is a significant advantage. A unified platform minimises the need for multiple data entries and searches across various databases and professionals for building information.

According to a study by McKinsey, the construction industry can boost productivity by 50-60% through digitisation, which includes centralising information. Building Passport aids in this by serving as the single go-to resource for all building-related data, from blueprints to safety certificates.

Efficiency leads to cost savings. By reducing the time professionals spend hunting for information, they can focus on higher-value tasks, leading to reduced overall costs for building and information management throughout the design, construction and occupation phases of a building.

2.3 Facilitating Better Decision Making

Immediate access to accurate and up-to-date information empowers building owners and professionals to make informed decisions swiftly. Whether it's putting an accurate price on a property, calculating renovation costs, safety improvements, or resolving maintenance issues - having all necessary data in one place eliminates guesswork.

This comprehensive view enhances strategic planning and resource allocation, ensuring investments are made wisely with a clear understanding of the building's current state and future needs.

2.4 Enhancing Communication

Streamlining communication among stakeholders is crucial during all stages of a building’s lifecycle. A Single Source of Truth ensures everyone from owners to contractors and emergency services has the same, consistent information. Building Passport's platform supports this by allowing authorised users to share information easily, ensuring that all parties are on the same page.

This not only improves coordination during design and construction phases, but also throughout the building management operation and any refurbishment projects.

2.5 Creating a Safer Built Environment

Prioritising safety is non-negotiable in the construction and operation of a building. A centralised information system allows for a better understanding of a building's safety features and potential hazards. For instance, Building Passport provides a unique advantage by making critical information freely accessible to fire and rescue services, thereby enabling a potentially faster and more informed response in the event of an emergency.

Additionally, it supports proactive risk management by maintaining detailed records of maintenance and safety inspections, whilst allowing the custom-monitoring of information on the platform, helping to mitigate risks before they escalate into major issues.

In conclusion, adopting a Single Source of Truth approach to building information management, spanning various ownerships and professional appointments, offers undeniable benefits. From enhancing compliance to facilitating better decision making and creating a safer built environment, the advantages are comprehensive.

Building Passport epitomises this by providing a platform that centralises building information, making it simpler for stakeholders to manage their properties effectively. For building owners and professionals looking to streamline their operations, improve safety, and ensure compliance, understanding and leveraging these benefits is essential.

Curious about how Building Passport can streamline your building information management? Discover how our platform centralises your building's information, simplifying compliance and enhancing safety. Explore more on Building Passport.


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