My name is Andrew Chee. I work at Switch Automation as a Digital Performance Building Engineer.
At Switch, I work on building and configuring logic modules through our analytics platform that runs across the ingested data points from buildings. From that output, we package the analytics into Events and present our findings to clients, mainly focusing on energy savings, general maintenance issues, and optimizing how the HVAC systems operate.
I studied Mechanical Engineering for my Bachelor’s degree. Sean Reed, the Director of Smart Building Services at Switch, was my frisbee coach at the university and referred me to the intern position in the company. Now, he is my mentor at Switch! The PropTech industry is very engaging to work in, and I haven’t looked back since.
As an intern at Switch, I learned the day-to-day operations and already owned some projects, which allowed for a natural transition to a full-time position. The company culture, the ability to communicate openly between all levels of seniority, and the feeling of a group of friends working towards accomplishing a common goal were all good incentives to join.
During my internship at Switch, I realized how inefficient buildings can be and that people don’t utilize their data. In response, smart building technology, such as Switch, can help building owners capture the data in one place, leading to energy savings, cost reductions, and savings during a building’s defects liability period.
Switch is a digital platform, created to ingest data from multiple sources throughout the building, such as BACnet, APIs, Internet of Things, and flat files. From here, it standardizes the data and makes it visible and accessible to our clients, who can utilize the data for their benefit. Our end goal is to make buildings more cost and energy efficient and have less impact on the environment.
I think our main difference is in our good collaboration with clients. We are not merely displaying a solution; we take feedback onboard and actively work alongside the clients to improve the product. Our flexibility and ability to import data from different files is another strength – we can adopt additional drivers to ensure we can ingest data from various data formats.
As a company, we are open and collaborative – the general feedback we receive from our clients is how easy we are to work with. This applies not only to the digital platform we create but also to the engineering services we provide, and our daily interactions with clients.
The ability to provide concrete evidence to all stakeholders, such as portfolio and site managers, to ease their decision-making process. For example, with the help of data-driven maintenance programs, we can easily identify problem areas, and point to which equipment needs fixing. Our portfolio benchmarking feature helps people in the higher portfolio management positions understand which buildings are performing well, and which buildings need help. Most of the time, clients are unaware of the existing data so we allow them to back their decisions with concrete data.
Taking the first step toward digitization is hard and some stakeholders in real estate fear change. However, asset managers are noticing how their competitors utilize technology to improve their buildings, which creates inertia; those who had feared change are now joining and adopting innovation and automation, indicating that the industry will grow even further. Technology should be utilized, especially to capture data and to help optimize the buildings.
It is a constantly growing industry, full of opportunities. In fact, with the climate crisis we are facing globally, there will be a greater demand. So join us, be part of our growth, and help asset managers leverage technology such as Switch to decarbonize buildings. If you love data and utilizing it to improve the world, then PropTech is the right place to be!
Talk to a smart building expert to learn more about how Switch helps portfolio managers reach their sustainability goals.
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