ARCHIBUS Success Story

Austin Independent School District Grows with ARCHIBUS
Austin Independent School District During the past decade, the city of Austin, Texas has experienced phenomenal growth. The Austin Independent School District (AISD) serves this bustling community with 13 high schools, 17 middle schools, 77 elementary schools, and four alternative programs. Over the years, AISD has consistently upgraded its ARCHIBUS system to support its vision of providing ready access to secure, accurate data. Today, the district has a comprehensive facilities and infrastructure management system that not only tracks space and space usage, but also the condition of that space and its support systems—along with the technological tools to accommodate future growth.

Tracking Demographics
When AISD first considered a facilities management solution, its main goal was to develop a reliable database that would include accommodation details on its 100+ buildings. By tracking room areas by code, the district can see at a glance the intended use of a classroom (to prevent trying to fit a classroom of teenagers into desks designed for second-graders); a room’s capacity; and how frequently it’s used. Information like this helps the district effectively assign classroom space and consolidate as needed.

In addition to these classrooms, AISD has over 600 portable buildings that are not represented on the school’s original floor plans. With the help of ARCHIBUS Business Partner SDM Enterprises of San Marcos, Texas, AISD uses the ARCHIBUS Space Management application to accurately track how these portable classrooms are used and where they are located. For example, a special federal grant required that AISD set up two portable buildings as kitchens to accommodate culinary arts classes. The district can now easily generate reports— including AutoCAD® drawings of these classroom spaces—that detail its compliance with the grant’s stipulations. Not only has AISD cut the time it takes to generate such reports, but the district can now post these reports on its intranet to simplify interaction among various departments, including Construction Management, Maintenance, and the schools’ administrative personnel.

Maintaining Schools from the Ground Up
In arid climates like Austin’s, rainfall is a commodity. Therefore, the state requires that 75% of an organization’s land be permeable. With site plans easily accessible in the ARCHIBUS Real Property & Lease Management application, AISD easily tracks and reports its permeable surfaces using defensible information.

Some of the district’s most significant rewards have come in the form of improved maintenance operations. AISD generates over 80,000 work orders per year through the ARCHIBUS Building Operations Management application. Both on-demand and preventive maintenance requests are processed through FM Works, a Web-based system from ARCHIBUS Business Partner FM Resource Group that acts as a front end to ARCHIBUS. Reports on everything from scheduling labor to tracking inventory to assigning budgets are generated via ARCHIBUS Web Central and can be shared with other departments, such as Finance. As a result, the maintenance staff is working with accurate numbers, which helps contain costs.

Such maintenance features have been put to unusual use in the case of the district’s roof tracking initiative. An SDM customization focuses on AISD’s 1,600 roof sections. The application tracks who installed the roof, how old it is, its associated warranties, and its most recent inspection. The ability to check on the status of assets such as roofs helps AISD accurately plan its maintenance tasks, while gaining a better understanding of the total cost of ownership.

Increasing Accountability
AISD has also added enhanced quality control features to its housekeeping and maintenance operations. Standardized inspection surveys—including weighted questions—are loaded onto PDA devices and given to maintenance staff. During their field inspections, staff members use the devices to rate how well the facilities are maintained. These surveys are automatically scored, and results are forwarded to the district’s upper management. In addition to enforcing accountability among maintenance supervisors, the district also uses the survey results to conduct follow-up work and troubleshoot customer concerns. In the past, these inspection surveys were conducted manually, and there was no clear audit trail. Today, the process is faster, smoother, and ratings are consistent among surveyors. Plus, these results help generate a historical maintenance record that can be sorted and reported on in any number of ways through ARCHIBUS.

Condition Assessment Savings
In an effort to keep its facilities and grounds in prime condition for its students, faculty, and staff, AISD is using a Condition Assessment application developed by SDM that taps into the district’s existing ARCHIBUS data. The benefits are already apparent. After paying a consultant to assess 45 of AISD’s 130 buildings a few years ago, the district was left with reams of information that quickly went stale—and a bill for $3 million. With the new Condition Assessment application, AISD can easily collect and maintain this information on its own, avoiding exorbitant consultants’ fees. This application will soon be married to other condition assessment functionality in ARCHIBUS to further streamline the process and ensure quick resolution of potential hazards. AISD also plans to add asbestos remediation and mold remediation tracking capabilities to its system, ensuring that this important life safety information is maintained in a single, dynamic repository.

According to AISD, this single source of information helps users accomplish all their facilities needs—fast. “Every day, we make gains in our productivity, from locating equipment to scheduling classroom space and more,” says Curt Shaw, Director of Construction Management at AISD. “The power of organized, consolidated information cannot be overestimated.”

Vital Statistics

Austin Independent School District
Austin, Texas
Facilities Facts:
130 buildings measuring approximately 10 million square feet, all of which is managed with ARCHIBUS

ARCHIBUS Applications:
Space Management
Overlay for AutoCAD® with Design Management
Real Property & Lease Management
Building Operations Management
FM Web Central

3rd Party Applications:
Condition Assessment (from SDM Enterprises); FM Works (from FM Resource Group); Palm-based inspection surveys (from Microview); Autodesk AutoCAD
Impetus for Implementation:
Needed easy, instant access to space usage and maintenance data for scheduling and reporting purposes
Benefits Gained:
Fast, easy regulatory reporting helps collect federal grant money; ability to efficiently consolidate classroom space helps manage growth; cost-effective condition assessment keeps facilities and grounds compliant with local and state regulations
Future Plans:
Incorporate preventive maintenance functionality; add asbestos and mold remediation tracking capabilities
Business Partners:
SDM Enterprises
Web Site:
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