Utilities Group Virtual Networking Meetings
Traditionally we have held regional networking meetings (Eastern and Western Utilities Group (EUG/WUG) to make it easier for participants to get together. Held at member sites, these meetings allow staff from participating companies to share best practices, network with regional peers, develop professionally/be mentored, and benchmark data/practices. These regional meetings have high participation levels because they are short, the smaller group allows a lot of interaction, and more than 90 percent of our attendees repeat each year.
The challenges in both hosting and attending on-site meetings in 2020 resulted in Facility Issues scheduling some web events in lieu of the traditional best practices meeting, and we will continue this practice for 2021 since it is likely than many participants will not have travel authorization or visitor limitations limiting the options for our regular on-site meetings.
These online meetings and workshops will allow an opportunity for networking, discussion of best practices, and some technical content throughout the year in lieu of the EUG/WUG meetings.
These are virtual meetings, not webinars – there may be some prepared content but these are opportunities to network and share with your peers: approach to the meeting topic, lessons learned, questions, and general discussion. These events will use the GoToMeeting or Teams platform and attendance may be limited so all participants can be seen on one screen and contribute to discussions. Each meeting will be 1 to 1-1/2 hours long with a typical agenda of:
- topic or theme which will be the initial subject of discussion,
- 1-2 mini-presentation* by sponsor or participant (related to topic),
- general town hall time (anyone can ask the group a question and share their experiences)
*As part of the benchmarking program, all participants are encouraged to share a mini-presentation during at least one of the meetings. (These are 10-20 minute presentation, case study, virtual facility tour, or sharing of something of interest going on at your organization/facility that take little or no effort for you to prepare.) Sessions are typically not recorded to allow for free discussion, but any prepared content will be made available as possible.
Utility Group Practices & Networking Meetings – Schedule and Tentative Topics
The focus of the 2021 online networking meetings will be on three areas:
- sharing the new standards and operations for post pandemic (new normal, next normal, better normal, whatever),
- discussion and update of the best practices in facility operations, and
- exploring new technologies and ways of working.
All meetings will be on the fourth Wednesday of the month at 4:00 pm ET unless otherwise noted. Use the form below to “register” or find the meeting invite in the member area. Here are the tentative topics – subject to revision based on interest and steering committee input!
|Feb||Reopening issues (space changes, new cleaning practices, other items of note) & Town Hall|
|Mar||Space standards, the hybrid workplace, implementation of space reservation, occupancy & visitor tracking systems & Town Hall|
|Apr||2021 initiatives for sustainability, wellness, resiliency (carbon neutral objectives, well building, zero waste, energy/water conservation) & Town Hall|
|May||Building technology and FM systems: CAFM, CMMS, IWMS, BMS, EMS, BIM, etc. what are we using and how Meeting TBD – Utilities Council Spring Meeting May 11-12|
|Jun||Planning the Hybrid Office environment – General Town Hall discussion|
|Jul||How do we use our facility data for better Cultural Facility operations, management, and planning – General Town Hall discussion|
|Sep||Metrics and practices for major projects & renovations|
|Oct||Automation in facility management or other topic TBD & Town Hall
Meeting TBD – Utilities Council Fall Meeting
|Nov||Topic TBD & Town Hall|
The meetings are open to all staff from organizations participating in any of our utility benchmarking programs – use the form below to register up to 1 week in advance.