Case Studies

Nova Southeastern University Discovers the Power of a Facilities Solution

When Nova Southeastern University (NSU) had to write their third facilities services request for proposal (RFP), they felt frustrated. The previous two facilities service companies they had worked with had not met their needs. It was beginning to seem hopeless.

The Encompass Team


When Nova Southeastern University (NSU) had to write their third facilities services request for proposal (RFP), they felt frustrated. The previous two facilities service companies they had worked with had not met their needs. It was beginning to seem hopeless.

But, along came Encompass. NSU was moving their existing Tampa Bay campus to a new 325,000 square-foot building in Clearwater, Florida, and needed facilities support at the new campus.

Once they saw what Encompass could do, NSU knew they wanted Encompass in the running to be their third and last facilities services provider.

Why NSU needed a new facilities solution

Previously, NSU had contracted with two different facilities services companies, and they were ready for a different experience.

Even with a dedicated facilities company, weeds overran the campus grounds, and they had to replace floors every couple of years. In addition, NSU was over budget on facilities management and maintenance. Unfortunately, the cost-plus contract with their service provider didn't allow them to budget accurately or control costs.

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Case Studies

Nova Southeastern University Discovers the Power of a Facilities Solution

Industry
Education
Location
Tampa Bay, FL
Size
314 Acres
The Encompass Team


When Nova Southeastern University (NSU) had to write their third facilities services request for proposal (RFP), they felt frustrated. The previous two facilities service companies they had worked with had not met their needs. It was beginning to seem hopeless.

But, along came Encompass. NSU was moving their existing Tampa Bay campus to a new 325,000 square-foot building in Clearwater, Florida, and needed facilities support at the new campus.

Once they saw what Encompass could do, NSU knew they wanted Encompass in the running to be their third and last facilities services provider.

Why NSU needed a new facilities solution

Previously, NSU had contracted with two different facilities services companies, and they were ready for a different experience.

Even with a dedicated facilities company, weeds overran the campus grounds, and they had to replace floors every couple of years. In addition, NSU was over budget on facilities management and maintenance. Unfortunately, the cost-plus contract with their service provider didn't allow them to budget accurately or control costs.

How Encompass came into play

Encompass had exceeded NSU's expectations on the new building move. Encompass created an impressive structure for the project: a dedicated director of operations, on-campus staffing, and proprietary software, which kept the project organized and running smoothly. Coupled with a preventative approach to maintenance and asset management, the outcomes proved to NSU that they should expand their relationship with Encompass.

NSU chose to scope out the project for bidding with Encompass's performance in Clearwater as a benchmark. They had two goals for all their campuses through this RFP: 1) to get out of the cost-plus model to accurately budget and control costs, and 2) to work with Encompass and obtain the same service reliability and quality that made the Tampa Bay campus project run so smoothly.

How did Encompass help NSU meet its facilities goals?

Encompass understood what issues NSU wanted to address: 

1. Constant floor replacements

2. Weedy grounds

3. Disjointed facilities staff

4. Surprise costs

5. High number of overdue work tickets

Encompass built a strategic plan for NSU to address all of these issues and improve their facilities budget.


Issue #1 — Floor replacements

The school’s floors had been getting costly replacements every few years. In addition, anytime floors needed maintenance, facilities staff created a work ticket that required approval before moving forward. This issue took up significant time and resources and resulted in the decreased visual quality of the space with these procedural delays.

The Encompass Team created a five-year preventive maintenance plan for the floors. The preventative maintenance was built into the contract, so it didn't cost the school extra money. And, it was managed through the Workflow management tool in its proprietary platform, which provided the programmatic controls and validation that the NSU team required. With an effective maintenance program in place, NSU has not replaced any floors.

Issue #2 — Overgrown grounds

The campus grounds were covered in weeds and were hard to maintain. It seemed you could pick a weed and turn around, and it had already regrown! In addition to revamping the entire Grounds program, training the staff, and restructuring management, Encompass partnered with a lawn chemical company to create a new weed killer formula. Encompass also replaced the existing machinery with more efficient technology, allowing for greater team productivity.

With these changes, Encompass reduced the necessary maintenance team from five to one and redeploy team members to other critical areas. The grounds have been transformed from a problematic fight with the weeds to an efficient team orchestrated program for maintaining the beauty of the landscaping.  The weeds stay gone longer, the team was less scattered, and their projects gained stability, enabling more proactive maintenance.

Issue #3 — Disjointed facilities staff

NSU’s facilities staff has stayed the same from one facilities service provider to the next. Still, their ability to do their job well has consistently improved since they began working with Encompass.

Encompass takes a different approach to managing the team. It's about open communication, feedback, training and development, and building a great culture of collaboration. Encompass designed a complete training and safety program with monthly meetings for staff. Part of the training is on communication to improve handoffs and collaboration. This training allowed Encompass to partner with the current team and use their skills more effectively and efficiently.

Using Encompass’s proprietary platform, the staff is given clear direction and effective technology to process work tickets faster. The team receives recognition and rewards, better communication, and they are now a cohesive unit pulling toward the same goals.

Issue #4 — Surprise costs

Unplanned services and outsourced projects were commonplace with previous facilities service providers, resulting in frequent budget overages. 

To resolve this issue, Encompass did three things:

  1. Brought in dedicated staff to manage ongoing projects like window washing
  2. Created preventive maintenance programs for recurring issues
  3. Hired an in-house equipment repair person to ensure projects weren't being held up or outsourced due to equipment failure

By reducing exceptions and supplemental services, Encompass was able to save NSU a significant amount of expenditures, helping to improve its budgetary performance.

Issue #5 — High number of overdue work tickets

When Encompass began as NSU's facilities service provider, there were 500-plus overdue work tickets in the system. This was likely due to a lack of preventive maintenance and training for the facilities staff.

Encompass’s priority for NSU was to get their facilities to a healthy baseline and then improve from there. With an initial heavy focus on delinquent work tickets and preventative maintenance in place to reduce work tickets, Encompass reduced work tickets down to no past-due tickets

The team has been trained to manage work tickets responsively and be efficient in using their time through better logistical planning and coordination. NSU's team, in turn, receives faster resolution to their requests, with more consistent quality outcomes.


Encompass, and NSU Make a Great Partnership

Today, NSU's facilities are thriving. They have met facilities goals and are implementing new initiatives to improve their campus and deliver on their mission to provide students with an innovative, dynamic, lifelong learning environment.


Encompass reduced their overall facilities costs by streamlining and strategizing to meet their immediate needs.

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