AKAM’s LifeCycle Platform: Addressing the Challenges of Aging Building Equipment (Florida)

Hi everybody, my name is Alexander Argento, and I’m Vice President of Operations here at AKAM Florida. With me today to present AKAM LifeCycle are Ken Greene, CEO of AKAM, and Ross Kellman, Principal of Life Cycle Facilitation Services. Good to have you both here. 

Alexander Argento: Thanks very much. We’re all aware that maintaining critical building components has become increasingly expensive, time-consuming, and complicated. To future-proof our properties, the LifeCycle program uses physical QR tags to generate a digital asset inventory, tracking the necessary repair and replacement of physical assets over time. This program leverages our network of vendors, improves pricing, automates invoicing, and documents and retains critical asset history. 

I want to ask Ken a couple of questions. For anyone who has questions, please use the Q&A below. Ken, great to have you here. Why LifeCycle? 

Ken Greene: Thanks, Alex. This is an exciting initiative for us. AKAM now manages almost 500 properties, giving us great scale and leverage to benefit our customers. Board members often ask how we can lower risk, reduce expenses, and do things more efficiently. This program addresses those needs. We’re investing in something industry-changing, making us the only management company in our space doing this right now. We hope to walk into a board meeting 18 months from now and say we lowered your risk profile and saved you more money than you paid us in management fees. That’s the goal. 

Alexander Argento: When you speak to boards, do they often mention issues that this program addresses? 

Ken Greene: Absolutely. Boards frequently ask about capital replacement plans, whether to repair or replace parts, and what future costs to expect. This program answers all those questions, managing capital assets in a smart and thoughtful way, optimizing expense decisions, and maximizing warranties on equipment. 

Alexander Argento: Buildings start aging from the minute they go into service. This program addresses that, right? 

Ken Greene: Yes, it does. It’s very exciting for us. 

Alexander Argento: Ross, why don’t you take us through the details? 

Ross Kellman: Thank you, Ken and Alex. Over the next 15 to 20 minutes, I’ll explain what this program means for property boards and owners. We start by tagging critical assets in the building with QR codes. This process begins on the roof and covers every part of the property, creating a catalog of all assets. We then evaluate service providers, review contracts, and ensure the right preventive maintenance services are in place. We connect your vendors to our technology, negotiate contracts, and manage warranties and certificates of insurance. This process helps achieve significant savings while maintaining high service standards. 

Just to reiterate, we work with your existing vendors. We don’t replace them unless necessary. This program is about improving efficiency and cost-effectiveness, not dictating which vendors to use. We aim to reduce overall costs by negotiating better contracts and improving service efficiency. Our technology allows for easy management and tracking of work orders, even from mobile devices. The system captures all relevant information from the moment a work order is created until it’s completed and invoiced, providing a comprehensive history of all maintenance activities. 

Alexander Argento: This digital footprint is incredibly powerful, especially for board members who need to approve invoices or understand the history of equipment on their property. 

Ross Kellman: Yes, all this information is also available on desktop, making it accessible from anywhere. This ensures that properties are well-maintained and that there are no surprises when it comes to budgeting for repairs or replacements. 

Alexander Argento: This reporting structure helps with transparency and documentation, which is crucial for compliance and future planning. 

Ross Kellman: Correct. Our system tracks warranties and ensures that properties are not billed for services covered under warranty. The financial reporting aspect of our program helps boards plan and budget effectively by providing detailed insights into maintenance and replacement costs. 

Alexander Argento: Can the replacement threshold be adjusted to suit the needs of individual properties? 

Ross Kellman: Yes, it can. We use a 45% threshold, but this can be adjusted based on the property’s preferences. The goal is to give properties enough time to plan for replacements without facing unexpected costs. 

Alexander Argento: This comprehensive approach is something we’ve never had before, and it helps boards make informed decisions. 

Ross Kellman: Absolutely. We need participation from the properties to provide us with necessary information like warranties and vendor details. It takes about 12 to 14 weeks to get a property live on our system, depending on the level of participation. 

Ken Greene: AKAM is investing in the asset tagging process because we believe it’s a significant differentiator and an important risk management tool. The cost of the service is covered through a percentage of the invoices processed through the system, ensuring net savings for our clients. 

Ross Kellman: We aim to offset management fees through the savings achieved, making this program cost-neutral at worst. Our goal is to show net savings for all properties we work with. 

Alexander Argento: Thank you, Ken and Ross. For those at home, any further information about the program can be obtained by speaking to your property managers. They will get in touch with us to schedule a detailed presentation if needed. Thanks, everyone, for your time today.