Sir, I read with interest the previous edition of Housing Technology (January 2016), especially the articles on the internet of things and smart asset management, and felt compelled to write with my observations on a couple of points raised.
Being already involved in the delivery of an IoT project at Two Castles Housing, I wholeheartedly agree with the observation from Zonr’s Robert Dent that, “Where the new generation of asset management software encompasses a technology shift such as IoT meters and sensors, housing providers will benefit significantly from the accurate real-time data delivered by on-site asset monitoring,” and I’m really excited about the initial results we are seeing coming through. This collaborative project was covered in November’s edition of Housing Technology (still available online) and I look forward to sharing the results (some surprising!) in future editions.
However, I do challenge the assertion in the smart asset management feature from Civica’s Jan Maes that, “At the moment, housing providers will benefit most from having separate asset management systems. This is mainly due to the fact that the IT suppliers have been focusing on separate housing management or asset management systems but haven’t provided functionalities to do both together.”
As one of the main IT suppliers to the housing sector, Capita has, in its OpenAssets solution, direct integration to its housing management system, OpenHousing. It was built that way. No doubt, being part of the same system does provide unique benefits such as not having to rely on third-party integration or interfacing, a single version of the truth, true offline mobile working, and responsive online access for compatibility with smartphones. OpenAssets was also built to work as a standalone solution and, like many other asset solutions on the market, offers interfacing to other housing software. The real beauty of a system which offers a complete solution, as part of an established housing management system, but also as a solution designed to work as a standalone, is the proficiency, flexibility and choice it provides for the housing sector.
Roger Birkinshaw is the housing director at Capita.