Q&A with WeMaintain's Heads of Fire Safety in Paris and the UK, Olivier Comets and Dave Martin

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How are you integrating WeMaintain’s IoT into FAS maintenance? 

Olivier:

IoT is already part of our offer. When an engineer comes onsite to do his pre-planned maintenance routine, he uses a suite of apps and an IoT module (that connects to the panel). The result is a smoother and more accurate operation for the engineer, more reliable maintenance and a more competitive pricing for the client. We also use IoT in  a different offer: remote fire panel monitoring.

Dave:

Our aim is to showcase the benefits of IoT on Fire Life Safety systems as well as our other verticals as a PropTech company. We also want to emphasise the role IoT and our other tech can play in reporting and compliance. 

And what are the benefits of this? For engineers and for customers? 

Dave:

We see IoT as an enabler. You still need our engineers to come to site and rectify problems that have occurred, but our IoT helps our engineers diagnose an issue by supplying the raw data. So before they arrive on site, the engineer has an idea of what the potential issue is. The IoT gives us real time data, smart maintenance and provides customers with the next generation experience and visibility of their assets. 

Olivier:

The benefit is twofold. The client is notified in real-time (on his phone, his computer, etc) about the events happening on his panels, which could be across different sites and regions. Analysis of the data on our side allows us to offer pro-active support to our customers and help us diagnose intricate situations such as intermittent faults.

Does incorporating IoT make operations safer? 

Dave:

Fire and Life Safety is an ever evolving industry. We feel that to keep pace with this and to remain ahead, IoT is a game changer. IoT is used to raise awareness of issues that we can get real time information from, which gives us a quicker repair and response time to faults and activations on systems to keep things operational.

Olivier, when you were designing the concept of Shokly and the IoT in FAS maintenance, was safety a key factor to you? 

Absolutely!! Safety was and still is at the core of the product:

-> Safety of the information: we gather and crunch sensitive data from equipment. When a customer reads in their report that we have tested ‘manual call loop2, address 3’, they can trust it has been done. We have devised specific code writing practices and set up automatic tests to ensure this point.

→ Safety of the transmission of information: the information we get is critical, the stake is property damage or even more serious, people’s lives and wellbeing. We monitor the communication link from the fire panel connector to your phone, email and app, and design it to keep it as robust to external interferences as possible. Our modules run on all mobile operators (3G and 4G), WIFI, and ethernet. 

→ Safety against cyber-risk: we use state of the art encryption in communication, secure provisioning and micro-service (server side) architecture to reduce the risk of intrusion and limit its impact.

Dave, how has your previous background in the navy helped in your Fire Safety career? 

It’s helped tremendous amounts. My background has taught me important skills of how to improvise, adapt and figure out how to swiftly work around problems that arise. Having started work on installations and servicing of life safety security systems, it has given me a great understanding of my engineers' issues when on site. This means I can help to resolve problems and empower them to improve their skill sets to advance to a higher level of maintenance.

How has the collaboration between you and the two countries’ developments in IoT & FS worked?

Dave:

The collaboration between us has been seamless, we both have the same goals to improve life safety standards. We have bounced many ideas back and forth, talking about the issues affecting the fire industries in each country we want to tackle. We may be across the channel, but we are one company with one goal, to put the best of people and technology at the heart of the built environment, while displaying Grit, Uniqueness and Care. 

Olivier:

In spite of the difference in regulations and equipment between our countries, the underlying philosophy of designing, installing, commissioning, maintaining and repairing a fire alarm system is very similar, and so are the operations and the tools we can use. 

To overcome any remaining hurdles, we share knowledge, best practice, tools, troubleshooting electronic faults etc., but still remember that we need local teams because of specificities in regulations and operations.

We are very much looking forward to sharing all of this with WeMaintain Singapore and beyond!

Find out more

If you want to learn more about our Fire Safety solution, please send an email to dave@wemaintain.com 🤝

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