Written by Sean Cunningham, IT Director (Nashville, TN)
Bryan Monahan, Property Manager (Minneapolis, MN) and I traveled to San Jose, CA, to attend the Realcomm conference, and I think I can safely speak for Bryan when I say we both came back with our heads full of information and ideas. This was the first time that Holladay was represented at Realcomm since 2004, an event which led ultimately to the creation of RE-Lynx and a drastic shift in Holladay’s tech focus, and we expect similar results from this year’s conference.
Realcomm Conference Group, LLC is a worldwide research and event company at the intersection of technology, innovation and real estate operations. Through their annual conferences, webinars, workshops, CIO Forums and other strategic services, Realcomm provides networking and collaboration opportunities, while educating industry professionals about the latest business solutions and technologies to improve commercial real estate development, leasing, management and operations.
Cyber security was one of the focal points of the event and Bryan and I learned a great deal about where we stand relative to the rest of our industry. We discovered different tricks of the trade and new ways to keep our information safe - the most important being training. The security question extended even to the building automation system discussions that we attended. We were able to watch a few live demos of two automation systems that we hope to implement soon in a few of our properties to improve both our security and our overall energy management platform.
From a strictly IT perspective, we learned how to analyze our current suite of facilities management software and I have already started working with MRI to gain direct access to their databases that will cut down on the duplication of information that we have to do to keep things in sync. We’re also investigating Office 365, the cloud “software-as-a-service” version of Word, Excel, Outlook, and other Office applications, which will improve mobile productivity and offload some of the demanding IT support tasks.
Overall, Bryan and I were really blown away with the amount of information that we were able to pick up in just three days. We plan to make Realcomm a regular event for us in the future as technology in our sector changes nearly as fast as it does in Silicon Valley itself.
While at the Realcomm conference, Sean Cunningham and Bryan Monahan were interviewed by Richard Scheinin and quoted in his article titled “San Jose: Showcasing smart buildings: where technology meets real estate” for The Mercury News Business section, which can be read here: http://www.mercurynews.com/business/ci_30050589/showcasing-smart-buildings-where-technology-meets-real-estate