Typical commissioning management processes can quickly become mired in the reams of paperwork they produce which makes information management of the activities difficult and inefficient. In 1997, Facility Dynamics Engineering began using a database-driven approach to managing the many tasks, tests, documents, and communication associated with the commissioning process. This has provided us with a consistent, efficient, and well-managed approach to the process involving all members of our company across all projects. FDE web-enabled these internal processes in 1999 and as technology has evolved, we’ve updated and maintained this approach to commissioning.
FDE’s exclusive project Cx Portal provides a web-based interface that is used by members of the project team as the focal-point of all commissioning activities and related communication from design review through detailed functional testing, training, and warranty activities. Within the Cx Portal, FDE develops a detailed ‘tree-based’ representation of all commissionable systems and components of the facility. This representation ranges from whole systems to subsystems to component devices such as sensors, valves, and actuators. The Cx Portal also provides web-based commissioning information management features including action items (commissioning issues log) and corresponding reports, FPT and start-up tests, and FPT database reports. Additionally, the Cx Portal can be used to track submittals, upload/store/download project files, enter/store nameplate documentation, and other uses as needed by the team.
Our Cx Portal has become very popular with many of our clients and has transformed our work into an extremely efficient (and almost paperless!) process that can be searched, sorted, and filtered to provide only the information needed at any given time. Documentation and reporting requirements throughout the process become streamlined and efficient since information is not lost or forgotten across various document revisions. Because the Cx Portal was developed specifically by FDE to serve the specific tasks and informational needs of the commissioning process, its functionality far exceeds commercial construction management software that is more applicable to scheduling and design management.