Facilities Matters

Why Outsource Facility Management?

June 25, 2019

Years ago, facility management meant keeping the lights on. It meant keeping a building, or a shopping center, or a hospital at a comfortable temperature year-round. Much of facility management focused on nuts and bolts – as facility managers, we were the “fix it” folk.

Today, the picture is changing. Oh, sure, we’re still fixing everything from broken toilets to complex HVAC systems, but our responsibilities extend far beyond that. Facility management is increasingly important to the C-Suite, and the increased attention has made outsourcing a far more viable option.

CEOs, CFOs and other corporate leaders are beginning to better understand the strategic function that facility management plays in everything from employee productivity to corporate culture to the bottom line. They’re realizing that facility management requires a well-trained team, working with continually updated technology.

You can’t get budget-critical predictive maintenance insights from a wrench.

With all that in play, outsourcing facility management has become a budget-friendly option preferred by CEOs and facility managers alike. For the leadership team, outsourcing helps them connect facility management to the strategic plan, moving the company closer to its goals.

If you’re a facility manager, outsourcing is a huge stress-reducer – and we’re not just talking about taking something off your plate. We know it’s not one plate. At any given time, you have 100 spinning plates in the air and you need to stay on all of them before any situation escalates, and any plates fall.

Outsourcing helps by:

  • Providing immediate access to the latest technology
  • Improving service delivery
  • Cutting costs

Lee Company has been providing facility management services for customers for decades. We’re happy to talk with you about your specific needs, and how our experienced professionals can help.

Facility Managers: 10 Reasons the CEO Should Boost Your Budget

June 18, 2019

When budget time rolls around at your company, there’s a good chance the CEO isn’t looking at Facility Management as a critical part of the strategic plan. There’s a really good chance the CEO isn’t looking at Facility Management as a revenue generator.

It’s true. Facility Management is a cost center. And yet, we can easily give you 10 reasons why the CEO should boost your budget:

  1. Today’s facility management goes far beyond nuts and bolts.
    As an industry of its own, facility management is relatively new and starting to gain traction as it delivers results. Moving beyond building maintenance, today’s facility managers are brought into strategic discussions earlier, offering expert input on everything from real estate to design to relevant budgeting.
  2. Investing in facility management is investing in the future.
    As a relatively young field, facility management is attracting some of the best and brightest future industry leaders, people who want to contribute to organizations that value their expertise.
  3. The way the building space is managed impacts employee productivity on a daily basis.
    The nuts and bolts of facility management will always matter. If the elevator is broken or the bathroom is out of order, employees spend more time away from their desks. And we all know what happens to productivity if your building is too hot or too cold.
  4. Facility management impacts employee morale.
    Want employees to be proud to work at your company? Give them workspace that builds pride. It takes resources to fix scuffs, repair broken tiles, handle paint touch-ups. But those little maintenance issues add up to a big difference. And, staying on top of these minor repairs can help your company stay ahead of major, disruptive projects.
  5. You only get one chance to make a first impression.
    Employees aren’t the only people who walk in your front door. Facility management is directly connected to image control. What kind of culture are you projecting? If customers visit your facility, everything from plumbing to HVAC issues shape their view of you.
  6. Strategic facility management helps in budgeting.
    Facility management includes preventive maintenance on major systems. However, it also includes predictive maintenance, helping you anticipate major, necessary expenses so budget can be appropriately allocated.
  7. Technology is changing.
    If you keep facility management in-house, it’s important to invest in rapidly changing technology. Real-time facility data is invaluable.
  8. Your team needs training.
    To keep a facility running securely, you might use automated control systems, data systems, camera systems, etc. Your team needs ongoing training to run and repair these systems.
  9. Dedicating the right budget creates breathing space.
    No one likes unexpected expenses. If you know you’re going to need a new roof next year, now’s the time to budget for it.
  10. Last, but certainly not least: Increasing your budget decreases executive stress.
    With a proper budget, you can staff appropriately; plan maintenance, repairs and replacement for minimum downtime; and help boost productivity and job satisfaction.

If, even with all these logical reasons, you don’t receive the budget boost you want, consider a completely different cost-saving approach to facility management. Outsource with Lee Company. We have the professionals, experience and technology you need to make facility management a strategic advantage.

The Rubik’s Cube solver runs in your web browser and it finds the solution for your puzzle in seconds.

With 505, Lee Company Makes History

May 19, 2017

Residential high-rise is the tallest building Lee Company has constructed in its 70+ years

If you’ve been watching the construction of 505, the high-rise residential complex going up in downtown Nashville, it’s easy to see that the new building will change the skyline. What you might have missed is that it already broke a record: When the Lee Company Construction team completed the 33rd floor and went on to floor 34, the crew surpassed all company records. Even before completion, 505 is the tallest building Lee Company has built.

Today we celebrated the “topping out” of the 505. A huge project milestone – where the last structural beam was placed on top of the building. It is an honor to be part of a prominent local project and work alongside Developer, Tony Giarratana and Contractor, Archer Western Construction.

With an expected completion date of January 2018, 505 will stand 573 feet tall, with 45 stories, 550 residential units, and a 34,560 square-foot amenities deck. While it won’t technically be the tallest building in Nashville – that honor will remain with the AT&T building – 505 is expected to look like the tallest building in town, thanks to its location.

“All of us at Lee Company are incredibly proud of the construction team and abilities to go beyond to create buildings destined to be Nashville landmarks,” says Gerry Vance, Executive Vice President. “With everything we do – we’re dedicated to making our community stronger. We’re honored to be part of Nashville, and appreciate all the opportunities for growth and success.”

Along with reaching record-setting heights with 505, Vance says Lee Company has recently:

  • Been named the ACCA 2017 Residential Contractor of the Year, a national honor
  • Surpassed the 1,000 employees mark

About Lee Company

Lee Company, a $225 million comprehensive facilities solutions and home services company with over 1,100 employees, was founded by Leon Lee in 1944. The company’s home services include: heating and air conditioning, plumbing, electrical, home security, home improvements, window replacement and appliance repair. Lee Company also offers facilities services and solutions for companies and organizations in the government, institutional, commercial, health care and industrial areas.


 

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Helping employees thrive

April 12, 2016

 

Ever since Leon Lee founded this company in 1944, we’ve been dedicated to helping both customers and employees succeed.

Now, we’ve found a new way to do both. With the world’s largest roll-out of smart safety glasses – part of our Insight technology platform – Lee Company is giving customers a new view of their facility equipment. The wearable technology allows service technicians in the field to send back high-definition photos, video and audio. You see what we see.

Lee Company customers love this innovation – and so do Lee Company professionals.

For our younger service technicians, the smart glasses give them a chance to use the same kind of technology they enjoy “playing” with at home. It’s like a virtual reality tool. Our more experienced technicians love it too. They’re now serving as mentors, looking at the images sent back from the field and guiding the technicians on site. Thanks to the smart glasses, the experienced pros can extend their careers and we all benefit from their time-tested wisdom.

You win. We win. Now that’s what we call smart.

Lee Company HVAC wearable technologyOur smart glasses. Your smart move.

Smart glasses are just one of the technology-driven tools Lee Company provides with INSIGHT, our comprehensive technology platform for facility managers. Move forward with Insight. Call Lee Company today: 615-567-1000.



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Now you see it: transparency and INSIGHT

March 09, 2016

In business – as in life – solid, long-lasting relationships are built on trust. Integrity matters.

How do you establish trust? At Lee Company, we’ve spent more than 70 years building a reputation for exceptional, reliable service. But we’re not resting on our laurels. We give customers another reason for confidence by taking them with us as we examine their facility equipment.

What? You don’t want to climb onto the roof in the winter? We understand. Lee Company has deployed 500 pairs of smart safety glasses into the field – the world’s largest rollout of this innovative, wearable technology. Armed with these amazing glasses, Lee Company service technicians can climb a roof or shimmy into a tight space, and send back high-definition photos, video and audio.

You’ll see it all from the comfort of your office. And, as they say: Seeing is believing.

Innovation. Integrity. Trust Lee Company to lead the way.

 

Our smart glasses. Your smart move.

Smart glasses are just one of the technology-driven tools Lee Company provides with Insight, our comprehensive technology platform for facility managers. Move forward with Insight. Call Lee Company today: 615-567-1000.



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Move to the front of the class

March 03, 2016

In five years, in 10 years, in 20 years, will there be enough plumbers to handle demand? Will you be able to find a skilled electrician? How about a construction pro? As critical trades face labor shortages, Lee Company continues to demonstrate industry leadership, providing and promoting educational opportunities for our employees at Lee Company University (LCU).

We think LCU is great. But we’re not the only ones.

Burns Phillips, Commissioner of Tennessee’s Labor and Workforce Development, recently sat in on an LCU class – HVAC 1 – at our manufacturing facility in Nashville. Commissioner Phillips, along with a group of Tennessee workforce leaders, got a firsthand, front-row look at Lee Company’s innovative approach to education, which includes classes at our corporate sites and outreach work at Middle Tennessee high schools.

“The Commissioner and his team were especially interested in our relationship with the schools and the NCCER (National Center for Construction Education and Research) curriculum offered to juniors and seniors at the high schools,” says Corey Driggs, Lee Company Training and Education Manager.

LCU logo w correct colors

The Lee Company University approach earned top grades with the state leaders; now, they want to learn more! Corey has been invited to speak to the Tennessee State Workforce Development Board in May.

 

Want to attend Lee Company University?
Our mission at Lee Company is to create a workplace where employees can thrive – and LCU is part of that! We’re always looking for great employees to join our team. Check out current job listings here.

LCU Grads Summer 2015

 

Fighting Brain Drain with Massive Smart Glasses Rollout

February 22, 2016

February 16, 2016

 

It’s a looming question for many field service organizations: How do you keep your brain trust of experienced technicians from retiring early? Often they leave after a couple of decades due to the physical demands of the job, such as climbing ladders or spending hours working on rooftops and in basements.

For Nashville’s Lee Company, the answer has come in the form of wearable tech, thanks to the recent rollout of 500 pairs of smart glasses. The idea: Retain experienced technicians as virtual supervisors who, from the comfort of the office, can help smart glasses-wearing techs in the field triage and fix problems.

Founded in 1944, Lee Company provides facilities services for home and commercial customers in Tennessee, Alabama and Kentucky. The company closely watches technology innovations that can help it stay competitive, says Steve Scott, Lee’s vice president of facilities solutions. “If we’re going to be a sustainable company for another 70 years, we’ve got to figure out how to stay relevant,” Scott says.

Experienced Eyes in the Field

Recently, Lee Company equipped technicians from its commercial service division with smart glasses from Vuzix to wear as they traveled to customer sites to maintain complex HVAC, electrical and plumbing systems. The glasses are equipped with software from XOEye that allows telepresence videoconferencing between on-site technicians and off-site supervisors, and also lets technicians in the company’s “triage center” access and view project documents like wiring diagrams and maintenance manuals.

“We use the glasses so we can see what the technician sees,” Scott says. “If technicians get into the work and find they need guidance, they can call in and talk to a supervisor [who] can offer support to the person on-site in real time, and suggest repairs and equipment changeouts.”

Before the smart glasses, if on-site technicians hit a roadblock at a customer location, they’d have to phone the triage center and verbally explain the problem. A senior technician would then jump in a truck, drive to the site and spend time troubleshooting (and climbing ladders, working in hazardous conditions, and so on).“That was the hard way,” Scott says. “There would have been delays, and the longer that equipment is down, the more it’s costing customers.”Now experienced staff can see video from the on-site technicians’ perspective — and they don’t need to leave the triage center to solve tough challenges. Onsite technicians can get systems up and running much faster, allowing them to move on to new customers and get more calls done in a day.
Customers See Clear Benefits
The smart glasses don’t just help connect senior technicians with their junior colleagues — they also help connect customers to the intricacies of the repair work being done to complex commercial systems. Software lets technicians attach video clips from the repair site, captured by the smart glasses, to service tickets so customers can see what was done to solve the problem. “Customers want more transparency. They want to know what we were doing in the places they can’t see, like on the roof of a building,” Scott says. “It creates more accountability.”

If we’re going to be a sustainable company for another 70 years, we’ve got to figure out how to stay relevant. — Steve Scott, Lee Company

And while they might not make the connection themselves, customers like the fact that smart glasses connect them to the most knowledgeable talent at Lee Company, even if the technicians aren’t there in person. “Customers always want the most experienced technicians to deal with their systems,” Scott says. The smart glasses help Lee Company meet this request, without demanding that the technicians be required to perform feats of strength and agility that might not be attainable.

The combination of smart glasses and smarter technicians is also helping Lee Company get more business. “It’s easier to get customers to make decisions on projects when we’re giving them a compelling narrative,” Scott says. “We’re showing them how it looks on the roof, or we walk through a mechanical room that has damage, and we can talk through the repair process. That kind of data helps decisions get made faster.”

So far, technicians see the smart glasses as a boon to their work, not a barrier. “Morale is good,” Scott says. “We didn’t just say, here’s the tool and start using it. We tried to get everyone to understand our vision for why we’re doing this.”

In the end, the company hopes that keeping creative and smart technicians on the job longer will raise its service levels across the board. “We’re retaining intellectual property and creating more career mobility,” says Scott.


Christine Kent brings more than 20 years of writing and journalism expertise to her work for technology, consumer and corporate organizations.


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Climbing the ladder of success

February 18, 2016

 

When you’re climbing the ladder of success, it helps to have someone holding it steady.

At Lee Company, we believe in doing what it takes to help our team and our customers succeed. As a perfect example, we’re now using smart safety glasses to enable longtime service professionals to mentor younger pros out in the field.

Using this innovative technology, Lee Company technicians can climb a ladder onto a facility rooftop – or shimmy into a tight area – and send high-definition photos, video and audio back to service mentors at Lee Company headquarters. If our on-site professionals have any questions about next steps, the experienced advisers are ready to help. Facility managers also have the chance to see what we see.

With everyone on board, there’s no delay in action and no need to reschedule repairs. The work gets done right, the first time.

No wonder so many customers are climbing on board!

Our smart glasses. Your smart move.

Smart glasses are just one of the technology-driven tools Lee Company provides with Insight, our comprehensive technology platform for facility managers. Move forward with Insight. Call Lee Company today: 615-567-1000.

insight



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Good enough never is

February 16, 2016

For years, the accepted philosophy in facility management has been: “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

With today’s technology, that approach simply isn’t good enough. Lee Company is now leading the industry with the use of smart safety glasses – wearable technology that helps our technicians enhance repair work and preventive maintenance. Lee Company’s smart glasses empower our professional technicians to:

  • Capture high-definition photos, video and audio – taking you virtually “on site” as we check facility equipment. We catch issues before they become problems.
  • Consult immediately with service mentors at Lee Company headquarters. Tapping into their expertise helps our younger professionals provide the best service possible.
  • Deliver greater transparency and confidence, along with enhanced service. Ever wonder what’s really going on with equipment you can’t see? Now, you’ll know.

 

Our smart glasses. Your smart move.

Smart glasses are just one of the technology-driven tools Lee Company provides with Insight, our comprehensive technology platform for facility managers. Move forward with Insight. Call Lee Company today: 615-567-1000.


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Lee Company Names Richard Perko President & CEO

February 05, 2016

 

Bill Lee remains Chairman of the Board for this third-generation family-owned company

  • Perko and Lee to continue collaboration as company continues to grow
  • Leadership move precedes physical move into new corporate headquarters

 

Richard Perko

Lee Company has announced that Richard Perko has been named CEO, a position that has been held by Bill Lee, who will remain as Chairman of the Board for the facility and residential services company his grandfather launched in 1944.

“At Lee Company, our mission has always been to create a workplace where employees can thrive, and Richard is a perfect example of that,” says Lee. “He joined our company back in 1996 straight out of college, and worked hard, growing into a leadership role. As president of Lee Company, he has done an exemplary job, as our results over the past 6 years testify.”

In 2015, Lee Company made national headlines with the world’s largest roll-out of wearable technology in enterprise– innovative smart glasses that enable service technicians in the field to provide facility managers with real time view and audio of their work, leading to improved service, repair and maintenance. The company is also in the midst of constructing a new, larger headquarters facility to accommodate its growth.

“This is the most exciting time in our company’s history. Our customers continue to seek our services and are rewarding us with unprecedented growth in all of our business units.” says Perko. “Lee Company is now recognized as a firm that provides comprehensive services for facilities and homes and is known to have the best, brightest people in the industry. Now we have added the latest technology available to expand our ability to provide solutions to our customers in ways they once only imagined.”


About Lee Company Lee Company, a $165 million comprehensive facilities solutions and home services company with over 950 employees, was founded by Leon Lee in 1944. The company’s home services include: heating and air conditioning, plumbing, electrical, home security, home improvements, window replacement and appliance repair. Lee Company also offers facilities services and solutions for companies and organizations in the government, institutional, commercial, health care and industrial areas. Among its many recognitions, Lee Company was recently honored by the Associated General Contractors of America with the 2015 Subcontractor of the Year award in the $10 million+ category.

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