Building With Vision

Written By: Dale Klein, CEO

Building a great company begins with vision. Vision provides direction on where we are going and why everyone is important.

At Parallel, our vision is to provide intelligent building solutions for our clients in order for them to experience safety and security, reliability, energy sustainability and operational efficiencies. That said, vision is nothing without execution.

In 2018, we executed well with our customers and are thankful for continuing to develop long term client partnerships. We believe that if we strive to exceed our customers’ expectations, they reward us with growth and success. Here are a few behind the scenes highlights from 2018:

  • Consistently received high client Net Promoter scores
  • Grew the company 50% over last two years
  • Grew our Nebraska office 350% in revenue
  • Earned a spot on the Star Tribune Top Workplaces for the 3rd straight year
  • Launched our Emerging Business team featuring Distributed Antenna Systems (DAS) practice
  • Promoted internally to key positions to support growth
  • Hired a lot of really talented people to our team

Similar to having a vision for building a great company, our clients desire a long-term vision for their building technologies and infrastructure. With a well thought out building infrastructure strategy, a company can position itself for future intelligent building systems while avoiding expensive missteps like having to rip and replace technologies.

Many building blocks of the intelligent building market are here with open, interoperable building systems like communication, security, and automation systems. Despite these big advances the intelligent building market is still very young. As the building technology rate of change continues to dramatically increase this will put more pressure on our clients to make the right decision for today and tomorrow.

By creating the right vision, it is helpful to work with business leaders to understand how their buildings can support their overall business strategy. In developing a vision we recommend answering two key questions:

  1. What are the company’s business objectives?
  2. How can building infrastructure technologies support those business objectives?

The first answer can usually be found in most companies relatively easily. The second is much harder to answer but provides more clarity around what investment in infrastructure should be made and why it is important. Without really connecting these dots much of the building systems become an expense rather than an investment.

When fleshing out your building infrastructure vision, questions to consider are around how to improve safety and security, energy sustainability, reliability and operational efficiencies.  A few important questions are:

  • How important is communication within the organization? Cell phones, like it or not, are part of our world now. They must work or business is interrupted. Consider 5G and what is required for the building network.
  • How can technology enhance employee productivity? We have lots of building technologies controlling a lot of different end points, such as signage, access, heating, cooling, communication, video, etc. Are they part of your vision?
  • How can surveillance camera and door access data inform operations on how to achieve more with less? We have seen several instances where access to relevant video or door access at the right time have had a big impact in managing operations.
  • How can energy consumption be managed more efficiently? Understanding the cost and how to better manage energy can lead to significant improvements.
  • How important is security in the building, and where are the areas with most risk? Mission critical areas require different security levels from other building areas.
  • How can sensor data inform business operations to drive efficiencies? All kinds of sensors are available in the marketplace now to help support better, faster decision making.
  • How can IT, Facilities, and Security departments work together to deliver more value? Building systems are complex and will require integration with IT and networking. Working closely with IT could reduce infrastructure expenses with converged networks. Not to mention strongly encourage for cyber security on the building systems.

A strong vision doesn’t guarantee success, but without it, it is easy to lose focus on what is really important. Now it’s all about execution.

Thank you for your business and partnership. We look forward to helping you with your intelligent buildings and reliable data centers in 2019.

-Dale Klein, CEO

Madison Olson